Steve Nyman: the “other American”Bode Miller and Daron Rahlves earning trips to the top of the podium is not the only pattern developing here at Beaver Creek. Steve Nyman is beginning to make a habit of scoring World Cup points. While his teammates hogged the spotlight (and the podium), Nyman quietly delivered another solid result, and was the only other American in the points. His 23rd place finish may not earn him headlines, but it comes on the heels of a 25th yesterday in super G, and a 14th in the Lake Louise downhill. It’s also impressive considering Nyman ran 44th, a better start position than he had in the super G, but none the less, nowhere near the top seed.
‘[I] Felt pretty good’ he said after his run. ‘I actually thought I’d be faster. But no worries.’
As the American men search for depth, young skiers like Nyman and Ted Ligety are vital if the American team is going to be more than a dynmaic duo. And according to Nyman, Rahlves and Miller would welcome the company at the top. ‘Bode definitely [radioed] up and told me to charge all the way down, and that’s what I did. â€¦ Our team is good like that. We’ll radio up and help each other, and give each other pointers because we want to be there as a nation.’
As Rahlves basked in the glory of his tenth World Cup victory, it would have been easy for Nyman’s finish to slip beneath his radar. But Rahlves did not forget his teammate. ‘The kid’s got skills for sure’ Rahlves said at the post-race press conference. ‘He knows how to find speed. â€¦ It’s good to see one of our teammates coming in as a rookie and getting points.’
Nyman is taking his relative success in stride, and his ‘awe, shucks’ attitude can’t quite hide a rapidly building confidence. ‘I’m going to just keep trying my hardest’ he said. ‘Chip away at it and get in there and one day luck will run on my side along with my skill.’
The tall 23-year-old Utah native is also not short on quirks. He sports colorful goggles designed by Japanese World Cup slalom skier Akira Sasaki, called Emusi, and has taken up a new habit, one that seems a good fit for his baritone voice. ‘I wear black on race day’ he said after the downhill. ‘That’s my new thing after watching Johnny Cash, Walk The Line.’