Like a certain other Minnesotan (namely Olympic champion Lindsey Vonn), Paula Moltzan made the move to Colorado's famed Ski and Snowboard Club Vail from her roots at Buck Hill. That was in August 2010. Fast forward five seasons and she has World Cup starts under her belt and a sure shot at gaining more high-profile race experience in 2015.
Moltzan made the big leap to the World Cup circuit during the 2015 season, and though she had glimpses of brilliance, it proved to be difficult for her to put two runs together. The one-month break for the World Cup tech skiers enabled Moltzan to travel on the Europa Cup circuit and ski some FIS races that helped her to regain confidence and at World Championships, she snagged her first top 30 result, landing in 20th in slalom in front of a big crowd full of family and friends. From there, Moltzan took the momentum to Junior Worlds and became the first American woman to win a slalom gold. She capped the season off with two second place finishes at U.S. Alpine Championships in Sugarloaf, ME.
“My Mom started me skiing early. I would tag along with her while she was giving other young kids skiing lessons at Buck Hill. By age five I was eager to join Buck’s Development Team. I’m very competitive and had lots of fun winning D-Team races on the weekends at Buck Hill and other local slopes. I think I started dreaming about becoming an Olympic ski racer after wining NASTAR Nationals in Park City and meeting all of the U.S. Ski team members that were setting pace times and hanging with all the athletes.
When I was 11 years old I joined the Buck Hill Ski Racing Club, where the world-renowned coach Erich Sailer instilled his passion for ski racing in me. He taught me how to train hard while riding the rope-tow almost every night. I can’t even begin to tell you the number of times he told me that I was ‘skiing to slow and that I needed to go faster if I wanted to win.’ Because of Eric I had great success as a J4 and J3 racer winning Medals at the USSA Junior Olympics, Canada’s Whistler Cup, and Italy’s Topolino Cup.
When I turned 16, I moved to Colorado with my dad to train with Ski and Snowboard Club Vail. While at Vail, coach Dan Strip helped me polish my technical and speed racing techniques. Within the year, just after my 17th birthday, I was invited to the U.S. Ski team.“
- Buck Hill Ski Team/Ski and Snowboard Club Vail
- University of Vermont
- University of Vermont
- Years on Team: 1
NCAA First Team All-American, SL, 2017, 2018
NCAA Individual National Champion, SL, 2017
NCAA First Team All-American, GS, 2018
EISA All-East First Team, 2017, 2018
EISA Rookie of the Year, 2017
National Collegiate All-Academic Team, 2017
1st, SL, Junior World Championships, Hafjell, NOR, 2015
2nd, GS, U.S. Alpine Championships, Sugarloaf, ME, 2015
2nd, SL, U.S. Alpine Championships, Sugarloaf, ME, 2015
4th, SL, Junior World Championships, Jasna, SVK, 2014
6th, GS, Junior World Championships, Jasna, SVK, 2014
First World Cup start, Aspen Winternational, 2013
2nd, SG, U.S. Championships among juniors, 2013