Designed as a stepping stone for aspiring Alpine, Snowboard and Nordic racers, the E-Team is a scholarship program for youth ages 13-25 designed to Elevate and Empower them to compete to the best of their ability. Since its inception in 2012, the E-Team has provided scholarships and race camp opportunities for more than 30 young athletes to help them achieve their dream of competing at the highest level. Next week, five alumni of the E-Team will see their hard work come to fruition at the 2014 Sochi Paralympic Games. NBC will air more than 50 hours of coverage of the Sochi games so you can cheer on these athletes and all of Team USA.
E-Team Members on the U.S. Paralympic Alpine Team
Hometown: Rochester Hills, Mich.
Disability: Right Below Knee Amputation
Starting Point: I got involved with skiing when I was three years old in Michigan. My parents took me skiing the first several years. I began racing when I was 14 and began competing with other disabled athletes when I was 17.
Training Ground: Winter Park, Colorado
Challenges: I have overcome numerous obstacles. It began when I was young and realized I was different from the other kids by having only one leg. That didn’t stop me! I worked longer and harder than every one of them and was able to always put myself on top of whatever I put my mind to.
Achievements: 2013 Giant Slalom National Champion; 2013 Slalom National Champion; 2013 University of Denver Freshman of the Year; 2013 New Zealand Winter Games 3rd Place in World Cup slalom (my second world cup race ever); 2013 giant slalom in Australia – 2nd place at World Cup; 2013 Slalom in Australia – 2nd Place at World Cup
Influencer/Hero: I have two. Steve Yzerman is definitely a huge hero in my eyes, but the second would have to be my dad, Michael Stanton. He has always taught me to never give up, be strong and push myself to the limits.
Home Chapter: Pennsylvania Center for Adapted Sports
Hometown: Harding, Pennsylvania
Disability: Born with Congenital Hemidysplasia with lcthyosis and Limb Defects Syndrome (CHILDS), a rare birth defect that left my left arm and leg underdeveloped. My leg was amputated shortly after birth.
Starting Point: When I was 9 years old, I received a letter to participate in an adaptive ski program for children with disabilities from the Pennsylvania Center for Adaptive Sports.
Training Ground: U.S. Paralympic Ski Team, U.S. Olympic Training Centers, Danko’s All American Fitness in Plains, PA
Challenges: There were/are challenges around every corner. From completing school with high grades to injuries. Also the pure stress and pressure of competing on such a high level.
Achievements: 2013 Australian World Cup gold, silver and bronze medalist; 2012 U.S. National Champion, gold medal slalom, Waterville Valley, NH
Hero/Influencer: My mother for her strength and courage even through the most difficult situations. Also for never giving up on me.
Home Chapter: Pennsylvania Center for Adaptive Sports
Disability: Right Below Knee Amputation
Achievements: Carter is relatively new to international competition, having raced in his first ever-world cup race in January of 2014. His top-20 finish in giant slalom, however, was strong enough to land him a spot on the 2014 U.S. Paralympic Team.
Starting Point: Carter had his leg amputated as an infant after being born without a fibula. Growing up, he played tennis and skateboarded, but he fell in love with skiing after attending the Pennsylvania Center for Adapted Sports camp when he was only 8-years-old.
Disability: Left Leg Amputation
Achievements: Parnell is a technical specialist, as he owns the 2012 National Championship title in slalom and earned a top-15 finish in slalom World Cup competition this year.
Starting Point: Parnell was competing in a mountain bike race with his father when he first saw a sign for an adaptive ski program at Mount Snow in Vermont. He asked his dad to bring him back to the mountain in winter. Parnell was racing locally by the age of 13 and made his first national team when he was just a college freshman.
Home Chapter: Challenge Alaska
Disability: Partial Paraplegia
Achievements: 2013 Canada National Downhill, Super G and Slalom champion, 2013 Copper NorAm Super G and Giant Slalom silver medalist
Starting Point: In 2007 a physical therapist saw how much I loved sports and said she had something I needed to try. I’ve been hooked ever since and couldn’t be more thankful.
Challenges: There have been many challenges, and now they’re what I use to fuel me. First I had to overcome the injury, and then I set small goals and worked to do what it took to reach them.