PARK CITY, UT (News Release-April 9, 2003) - Jim Tracy, a member of the U.S. Ski Team coaching staff since 1987 and women's downhill head coach for the past seven seasons, has retired from World Cup coaching, Head Coach Patrick Riml announced Thursday.
"I had two things I wanted to do when the time came to move on," said Tracy. "I wanted to leave the team in good shape, so we had more than one person ready to win, ready to win medals, and I'm confident this group is ready to do that."
Tracy, a graduate of Pierce College (B.S. in geology and forestry management) who lives in Hood River, OR, joined the coaching staff in 1987 after nine years at Ski Club Vail. He coached with the men's speed team until the spring of 1996 when he took over as women's downhill/super G head coach. He retires as the senior coach of any U.S. Ski Team.
Among the athletes Tracy has coached are Olympic champions Tommy Moe and Picabo Street, 1997 downhill world champion Hilary Lindh and World Cup winners Kirsten Clark (Raymond, ME), AJ Kitt and Kyle Rasmussen. At the 2003 World Championships, Clark earned the super G silver medal while Jonna Mendes (Heavenly, CA) was the bronze medalist. That group has won six World Cups and compiled seven medals at the Olympics or World Championships with Tracy as coach.
"Ever since Theo Nadig (then men's DH head coach) took a chance on me, I've been incredibly fortunate to work with some outstanding athletes through the years, and to be part of some great staffs," Tracy said. "It's very gratifying to know I'm leaving the team in good shape, but I'm also ready for another challenge, whether it's within USSA or elsewhere."
"Where do I start? Jim's been with the team for so many years, and he's been an incredible asset through those years," said U.S. Alpine Director Jesse Hunt. "He's among the great American coaches who have been part of the World, Olympic and World Championships success by the alpine team, including success on both the men's team and then the women's team. He has brought consistency and expertise where it was needed. He'll be missed."
Riml said he expected to name a new women's downhill/SG head coach shortly.