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USSA Coaches Honored by USOC

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
April, 6 2012


COLORADO SPRINGS, CO (April 6) – Two U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association coaches are among finalists for the U.S. Olympic Committee’s 2011 Coaches of the Year. U.S. Snowboarding halfpipe coach Rick Bower is one of three finalists for National Coach of the Year.  Chris “Hatch” Haslock, founder of AXIS Freeride in Park City, UT, is among three nominees for Developmental Coach Year for his contributions to developing junior freeskiing athletes. Both Bower and Haslock were recognized in 2011 by the USSA as International and Development Coaches of the Year. Winners will be announced June 19 as part of the 2012 National Coaching Conference at the NCAA Hall of Champions in Indianapolis. 


  • U.S. Snowboarding’s halfpipe coach Rick Bower and AXIS Freeride coach/founder Chris “Hatch” Haslock have been honored with nominations from the U.S. Olympic Committee for National Coach of the Year.
  • Bower, the 1999 halfpipe World Champion, is in his sixth year of coaching and credited with playing a key role in the progression of women’s snowboarding. In 2011 he led his athletes to 31 major event podiums.
  • USOC has nominated Bower for National Coach of the Year Award for coaches  on an elite-level club or national teams.
  • In 2011 Bower was awarded the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association’s International Coach of the Year.
  • Haslock has been actively coaching for 27 years and is a respected coaching force with his club assisting developing recreational and competitive athletes from a young age.
  • USOC has nominated Haslock for its Developmental Coach of the Year Award which requires that the coach is responsible for coaching youth athletes.
  • In 2011 Haslock was awarded the Development Coach of the Year from the USSA.
  • U.S. Olympic, Paralympic and Pan American sports organizations selected their 2011 Coaches of the Year as part of the USOC Coach of the Year Recognition Program. A panel of coaching and sport education professionals chose the finalists in each category.
  • USOC will announce winners on June 19 at its National Coaching Conference at the NCAA Hall of Champions in Indianapolis.


Rick Bower

I am incredibly honored to be a finalist for the USOC Coach of the Year award. I feel this nomination speaks for the overall progress of the sport of halfpipe snowboarding and I feel very fortunate to be a part of that progression.  

Our U.S. Snowboarding athletes make my job easy - they are all so internally motivated, and on such a high level of performance collectively, that they are able to continually push each other to achieve athletic success. This dynamic is equally fun to be a part of seeing as most of these athletes are great friends on and off the snow as well as being each other’s top competition.  

Chris “Hatch” Haslock
By design and creation AXIS Freeride was meant to be a grassroots program. This is our sixth season of AXIS and now some of the kids that were ten are now 16 and breaking into the pro ranks. This (2014) Olympics might be it for them, but realistically the 2018 Olympics are when they will be there. It is has been an absolute pleasure to watch athletes find their way through this. It is a really exciting time for freesking. I was fortunate to be an athlete in 1988 (Olympics) when freestyle was a demonstration event. To help this new genre, see it get Olympic acceptance, and help kids find their way there is super exciting.

There are always a couple kids that come out of the ranks, that are starting to get involved and I love to see them get that fire. They have a love and drive for it; we have kids that grow up with us and in three or four years it clicks for them. They start to really progress. Every time that happens it makes you glad you are out there doing what you do. 

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