Nordic skiers Simi Hamilton and Noah Hoffman are headed to Europe to compete on the World Cup circuit and then on to Pyeongchang for the 2018 Winter Olympics. Hamilton is the top male Nordic racer in the U.S., ranked 9th in the world.
The U.S. Cross Country Ski Team does not receive federal funding. It’s the only team on the international circuit that doesn’t. The team operates on a significantly smaller budget than it's competitors. Top-ranked Norway has $11 million, while the U.S. team budget doesn’t crack one million. That means athletes need to chip in on fundraising efforts.
Hamilton and Hoffman kick off the winter competition season with a fundraiser at the Belly Up on Friday at 5:30 p.m. The first World Cup races are in November in Finland.