XLR8 ALPINE RACING COACHING STAFF
The XLR8 Alpine Racing Coaching Staff is comprised of Individuals and United States Ski Association (USSA) Certified Coaches with over 100+ years of combined experience. The XLR8 Alpine Racing Staff is dedicated to bringing a heightened level of enthusiasm and innovative teaching techniques to benefit your racer.
Eric started skiing at the age of two and hasn’t stopped since. He began racing at Mt. Brighton at the age of nine with the Jr. Expo program which quickly lead to racing USSA in Region 3 at the age of ten. He worked his way through what was called at that time, the select program and moved up to the elite program by age thirteen with the Bay Race Academy out of Traverse City. He qualified for the Junior Olympics as a J2 in 1985 and 1986, which was followed by FIS racing at the age of 15 at the Central Mid Am Series. As a FIS racer, he raced all over the country from Michigan, the East Coast, Rockies, the West Coast, all the way to Alaska and into Canada. At the age of 19, he qualified for US Nationals in all events.
He spent his post-grad year in Aspen, CO with the Aspen Ski Club. That season, he qualified for US Nationals in SG. After returning to Michigan, at 22, he raced back in Region 3 and the Central Mid-Am series until he blew-out his knee and retired from competitive ski racing, which started his coaching career. Eric began coaching at Apple Mt. in Midland Michigan for the Bay Race Academy. After graduating from Northwood University, he returned to Brighton and continued to coach at Mt. Brighton for 3 years as the southeastern group for Bay Race Academy. With the retirement of the Bay Race Academy director, Ted Lockwood, the southeastern group ended. Eric returned to racing for himself and a short time later joined the XLR8 program for his daughter Jo. Over the last 6 years, he has become a Level 200 USSA coach and has been working as the traveling coach with the USSA program for XLR8 Alpine Racing.
Known as “DTrean.” I subscribe to the XLR8 philosophy of teaching our athletes technically sound fundamentals first along with developing great ski race competitor’s.
Don grew up skiing and racing throughout Michigan. After college, he moved to Aspen and joined the Aspen Ski Racing Club participating as an individual in Colorado Amateur races along with competing in the Colorado Town Race Series. After two years, Don relocated to Utah and had a three-year opportunity to train alongside the US Ski Team in the ski team training area. After gaining a tremendous amount of experience, Don headed west to join the Sierra Tahoe and Peugeot Pro Tours located in Lake Tahoe.
After four years of what I call an “average pro career”, I had the opportunity to coach Far West ski racers at Bear Valley, Mt. Reba, CA. This really stoked my coaching fires. Experiencing first-hand, athletes who develop as ski racers, grow as solid individuals and continue to commit to their educational goals is an incredible situation to be a part of.
Job opportunities brought me back to Michigan where I continued my passion for ski racing and coaching serious minded ski racers. I joined the coaching staff of Alpine Race Team who catered to CUSSA and elite high school racers. I was pleased to join XLR8 2 years ago, after a 9-year stint as assistant coach at Milford High School.
I realize there is no single approach to maximize every racers potential. I believe in focusing on each racer as an individual who has a unique personality, a different way of learning and level of motivation. I am convinced, sharing the visions of each racer, understanding family goals combined with our attentive coaching staff will lead to a life-long positive experience for everyone.
XLR8 will teach team members to respect our competitor’s, coaches and officials. We will encourage an honest effort to do our best. Team XLR8 racers will learn sportsmanship, to be humble in victory and gracious in defeat. We will teach them winning is not everything, but trying to win is nothing to be ashamed of. We will teach being part of a team XLR8 is …. awesome!
Lastly, when we work collectively toward a positive setting, stressing safety and encouraging a supportive atmosphere, ski racing can and will be a life-long enjoyable experience for all.
See you soon.
DTrean’s motto: ski fast, take chances
DTrean’s approach; low key
Elaine learned how to ski at Mt. Brighton when she was three years old. She raced for Pinckney High School and was on the varsity team for all four years. She qualified individually to race at States. She
was also on the varsity cheerleading team.
She attended Michigan State University and graduated with a Bachelors degree in Political Science (Pre-Law). While at MSU, she was on the ski team and spent many weekends racing at Crystal Mountain. During her senior year, she drove down from East Lansing to Mt. Brighton a few nights a week to coach for XLR8. After college, Elaine’s love for skiing brought her to South Lake Tahoe, CA to teach at Heavenly. She was a children’s ski instructor there last winter and is back in Michigan this year to help coach with XLR8.
Steve started skiing when he was 2 years old. His parents were both avid skiers and got him started at a very young age on the slopes of Schuss Mountain. He grew up in Brighton and started ski racing in middle school. He raced on the Brighton High School ski team and was on the golf and tennis teams. He graduated from Michigan State University and while in college he spent every Christmas and spring break on ski trips out west.
Steve was the head coach of the Pinckney High School ski team for 20 years at Mt. Brighton. He attended several MHSAA state ski finals both as a competitor and coach. Steve also is a veteran snowboarder and cross country skier. He joined Vail Resorts and XLR8 in 2014. He has the heart of a teacher and loves to share his knowledge and passion for the sport. Steve lives in Brighton with his wife and 2 daughters, all skiers of course.
Ashton grew up in Brighton, MI and began her skiing career at 2 and a half years old. Ashton began racing when she was in 6th grade with her Dad, aka Coach Street. In high school Ashton was a 4 time state qualifier and individual district champion in 2012. On the weekends, you would find Ashton up north racing CUSSA. Ashton was a two sport varsity athlete at Brighton High School. Not only did she race, but she also was a lacrosse player. In 2011 she experienced winning the State Championships with her lacrosse team.
Matt is a Brighton native who began skiing at age three and got his first taste of ski racing in sixth grade. Matt went on to ski Varsity for Brighton High School all four years and was team captain for his Junior and Senior seasons. Matt was both a High School racer and CUSSA athlete and competed in USSA and FIS sanctioned races all over Region III. At the High School level, Matt’s race history includes multiple Regional and Divisional wins, top 15 State finishes, All-State team appointments and a trip to the State finals all four years at Brighton High School.
Competing as a USSA athlete, Matt scored FIS points for slalom, GS and Super G while qualifying for several Mid-AM and FIS level races. In addition to Brighton High School, Matt also skied for the Bay Race Academy program based out of Traverse City, where he was coached by our very own Eric Cook.
2016/2017 will mark Matt’s 4 th season with XLR8 and is currently a USSA Level 100 certified coach. His favorite aspect of coaching is watching the progress athletes make over the season and year over year. He also loves the work aspect of ski coaching and is always happy to toss a bundle of gates over his shoulder.
Sally’s passion for skiing really ignited while working at Yellowstone National Park the summer after her second year of college. While watching a ski video one evening, she realized she really wanted to get more involved in skiing. Sally spent the next year, working at Boyne Mountain, MI and then moved to Steamboat Springs, CO for 3 years. After moving back to MI to finish school, she started instructing at Mt. Brighton and received her PSIA (Professional Ski Instructor Association) Level 2 Certification. PSIA-C has provided her with valuable training, great ski experiences, and wonderful friendships. Sally has over 30 years of teaching experience at Mt. Brighton where she helped to start up a children’s program and currently works with the XLR8 Alpine Racing program. Sally also has over 20 years of teaching experience at Boyne Mountain. This past year she received her USSA Level 100 Coaching Certification.
Currently, Sally has a position on the PSIA board of Directors, which has been a great opportunity to work with an enthusiastic and great team of ski teaching professionals. This past May, Sally retired from a career as an IT (Information Technology) professional, where she spent 20 years in the Automotive Industry and 10 years in the Health Care Industry. She is really looking forward to having more time to spend on the hill and working with XLR8!
Devon grew up skiing Mt. Brighton almost every day after elementary school and into high school competing in CUSSA races on the weekends. Devon attended Brighton High School where she was a two sport varsity athlete: Skiing and Track. Being a multi-sport athlete herself, Devon understands and values the importance of being a well-rounded athlete.
While attending Green Mountain College in Poultney, VT, Devon spent as much time on snow as possible while earning a degree in Resort Management. During her college years racing USCSA, Devon was All-Conference and Team Captain her senior year. She was also named Captain and earned the title of NCAA Division III All American soccer player. Since graduating, Devon has worked at Okemo Mountain School (year round ski academy located in Ludlow, VT) coaching U 16 athletes and at Pico Ski Club in Killington, VT coaching U16 & U12 athletes. She has helped several athletes reach such accolades of being named to the Junior Olympic Team, Eastern Cup Team, and Can/Am Team. Her passion for the sport is not confined to the race course. Devon promotes a strong fundamental foundation, good technical mechanics, and an overall love of skiing in her athletes.
Matt spent grade school through high school free-skiing at his hometown ski areas, of Mt. Holly in Holly, Michigan and Chestnut Mountain in Galena, Illinois. Although he played competitive baseball and basketball throughout his school years, it was only after college that Matt took up ski racing. Ski racing was a way to step up the thrill of skiing in Michigan and to fuel his competitive spirit. Quickly, Matt fell in love with the sport. He dedicated himself to improving by training at every opportunity he could find from lower Michigan resorts (primarily Mt. Brighton) to northern Michigan resorts (Boyne Mountain, Nubs Nob, Brule, Searchmont) to western resorts (Breckenridge, Copper Mountain, Mt Hood). For more than 10 years, Matt participated in the Michigan Alpine Competition Committee (MACC) adult racing program. Matt ascended to the top class in the MACC and won the overall title in the Elite-1 class in 2007. Since, work, family and coaching have become the leading priority in his life over competitive ski racing. For the past 12 years, Matt has shared his passion for ski racing and skiing by coaching adults and kids in the Mt. Brighton race program. Matt takes particular joy in helping skiers improve not only their racing ability, but also their overall skiing ability and confidence.
Art lives in the suburbs of Cleveland, OH and grew up in the suburbs of Chicago, IL. He is an Eagle Scout with a MBA from the University of Phoenix and a BS in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University. BOILER UP!
Art didn’t get into skiing until the age of 31 after moving from Michigan to Ohio where he needed “something to do during the winter.” In 2012, at NASTAR Nationals, Art and his Family were introduced to the XLR8 Alpine Racing Team.
Since, Art has been active in XLR8. He is the XLR8 web-site editor/creator, a member of the Board of Directors, and assumes various other tasks as needed. He can even be found helping at dry land training. Art has continued his development by getting his USSA Level 100 Coaching Certification. Art is excited and passionate about developing young athletes, skiing, coaching and being a member of XLR8 Alpine Racing.