Maddy’s Journey to the Podium
To herald the beginning of a new fiscal year, Systemscope presented its new vision statement at our staff retreat this summer. We took great care to recognize our value proposition as well as our plans for growth. One of the pillars of our value proposition was realizing social responsibility by Giving Back: sponsoring events in our professional communities, making charitable contributions to a number of worthwhile causes, and supporting excellence in youth athletics. On the last point, Systemscope has been sponsoring a talented young woman in her Slalom/Grand Slalom goals and in this blog post, we are pleased to showcase her achievements, and what Systemscope’s support has meant to her during a challenging phase in her “journey to the podium”. – Denis Barbeau, Partner
My name is Madison Hollington and I am a 15 year old competitive alpine ski racer. I am on the regional elite race team called NCOST (National Capital Outaouais Ski Team). The regional team is a development team designed to transition to the provincial teams.
I first learned how to ski at 3 years old and I started to race at the age of 6. I started taking ski racing seriously when I was 11. From that point, I have been extremely committed to the sport.
There have been many sacrifices made for me to race at such a high level; including countless hours of training in the gym and on snow. This year, my biggest challenge was actually academic because I changed to a specific sport study program at a completely different school. Although I will miss my teachers and friends this new environment allows me to manage my training and my academics together as one.
Whether you ski race or ski recreationally, alpine skiing is a very expensive sport. Systemscope has been sponsoring me for 2 seasons now. Without the help of Systemscope, I would never have come as far as I have or have been able to attend ski camps crucial for my development, train and race on new equipment each season and attend provincial events. I am so grateful to have Systemscope as a sponsor because they support me through thick and thin. A great example of that is when I tore my ACL this past season and they stood by me throughout the process. The partners at Systemscope, namely Denis Barbeau and Steve Karam, sent encouraging messages that helped me get back on my feet. They have always been encouraging at big races, communicate well with me and show interest in my development and results.
A bit about ski racing:
U16 is the highest age group before FIS. This season will be my last in U16. FIS which is an international race circuit for racers 17 and up. In FIS, you can ski out of a ski club or out of the provincial team if you have been selected. After that, I will continue racing in FIS with hopes of making the Quebec provincial team. World Cup racers have been selected from their provincial teams to race for their country against other racers from all around the world. Currently we have 2 alumni of the NCO on the National team competing at the world Cup level; Dustin Cook and Mikaela Tommy. These two have been very inspirational to not only me, but everyone in
the region because they proved that coming from a less known club or a small town doesn’t mean you’re not as good as other racers from more exclusive clubs.
NCOST (National Capital Outaouais Ski Team) is the regional ski team which provides a high intensity training environment for elite racers in the region. The members of the team are selected based on their skiing ability and athletic ability. The perks of being on the NCO team are being in a competitive environment with other great skiers that I can learn from. I also have the opportunity to attend many different training camps only available to elite teams. I also have amazing coaching from ex alpine Olympian Jean-Philippe Roy and NCAA champion Rebecca Nadler.
My goals for this season:
My goals for this season are to really push myself and to be the best ski racer I can be while dealing with my ACL repair. I want to show everyone that coming into the season after an injury does not make you the underdog, it only makes you stronger. I have been using my time off snow this summer to train in the gym so I can regain the muscle I lost in my injured leg and to gain more muscle in my whole body so I can be an even stronger skier this season. My goal in the zone would be to finish in the top 3 and make the Can-Ams where the provincial teams are watching.
How Systemscope helped me accomplish my goals:
Systemscope’s sponsorship has helped me improve immensely. Because of the help, my family is able to afford to send me on important training camps and buy me the right equipment that is necessary for my success. Most importantly, I was able to join the NCO ski team where I am surrounded by expert coaches. Systemscope’s generosity and support is continuous and I am truly grateful for everything. I have seen spectacular things and skied in amazing places Like Whistler and Sun Peaks, both in British Columbia.
This past season, my results improved a lot from the previous season thanks to all the extra training and time on snow with my coaches. I am extremely happy because better results means I’m one step closer to achieving my dreams.
I look forward to this ski season and I have lots of exciting things (camps, gym work, etc.) planned with my new team! To finish off I would like to say one HUGE thanks to all of the Systemscope team for helping me on the road to success.
-Maddy “ Mad Dog”
Scott Duncan is a senior consultant with Systemscope. He has nearly 20 years experience as an information architect and communications strategist.