New program director and head coach for Ski & Snowboard Team

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald
Brian Santos, left, is the new head coach of the Mt. Shasta Ski & Snowboard Team and Alyssa Winkelman is the new program director. Submitted photos

Two locals with long and impressive alpine racing resumes are taking on key positions with the Mt. Shasta Ski & Snowboard Team.

The team announced last week that it has hired Alyssa Winkelman as its new Program Director, while Brian Santos is taking on the role of Head Coach.

Winkelman was born in Siskiyou County, raised in Mount Shasta, joined the Ski Team at the age of seven, and earned numerous All-State awards during her four years on the Mount Shasta High School ski team.

Santos, a former Winter Paralympics champion and member of the National Disabled Ski Hall of Fame, has been with the Ski Team for 20 seasons coaching advanced programs.

“We are proud to have Alyssa re-join the team,” states Ski Team Board of Directors President Chris Chase in a press release. “Her ski racing skills took her all the way to the California/Nevada State Championships in her high school years. Those who know Alyssa will agree that she is positive, energetic and passionate about alpine education and the mountain community.

“She has extensive qualifications in outdoor education instruction and emergency medical training. In addition to being a lifelong skier, she has served for eight winters as a Ski Patroller at the Mt. Shasta Ski Park. She is involved with many community non-profits, including Bike Shasta and the Mt. Shasta Nordic Center. The team welcomes her and looks forward to a successful and snowy program season,” said Chase.

Winkelman was a member of Mount Shasta High School ski racing teams that won back-to-back combined boys and girls CNISSF state championships in 2009 and 2010, and she placed 2nd on the girls All-State team as a senior, 3rd as a junior and 5th as a freshman.

“I am thrilled to be leading this organization into the future,” Winkelman states in the press release. “Mt. Shasta Ski Team raised me and taught me the value of being part of a team and working hard. I am so excited to pass along what I learned as a ski racer to all our young athletes. I have big plans for making our programs more sustainable and can’t wait to see what we can do.”

Chris Chase says Brian Santos’s “racing and coaching expertise is unparalleled in our region. Local skiers and racers have benefited from his skills for many years and this promotion will enable Brian to mentor our coaches and help Alyssa build our program.”

The Ski & Snowboard Team states in the release that it is “excited to have Brian Santos take on the role of Head Coach. He has been with the ski team for twenty seasons coaching advanced programs. Brian is a highly qualified coach being a level 400 ski instructor. As a ski racer he won many medals at the US Championships and at two Winter Paralympics, as well as being named to the National Disabled Ski Hall of Fame.”

Since 1987, the non-profit organizations Mt. Shasta Ski & Snowboard Team and the Mt. Shasta Race Association have been organizing youth snow sports education programs, coaching high school Alpine racing and providing the adult skiers Master’s Program. With the help of the Mt. Shasta Ski Park they provide training venues and race course set up.

In March, the Ski Park and MSRA will host the California Nevada Interscholastic Ski and Snowboard Federation Championships.

The Mt. Shasta Race Association’s goal is “to promote the benefits of a community oriented mountain lifestyle by building strong skiing and riding skills and fostering a lifelong passion for winter sports. Under its guidance, athletes learn to maintain high standards for personal, athletic and academic achievement.

“MSRA is committed to providing the highest quality coaching and training environment. The team emphasizes safety, fundamentals, sportsmanship, discipline, camaraderie and fun while maintaining an affordable program that will lead each athlete to reach his or her potential.”

Registration for the 2018-2019 season is open and features a new registration system, Team Snap. For more information about MSRA and MSST, visit mtshastaskiteam.com, contact 530-859-3600, or email to mtshastaskiteam@gmail.com.