Photo: Dustin Satloff

Women will join men at 2024 Stifel Birds of Prey

2024-2025 calendar is confirmed: men’s and women’s alpine racing will return to Beaver Creek for first time since FIS 2015 Alpine World Ski Championships

It’s official: men’s and women’s Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup races will be held on the famed Birds of Prey course in Beaver Creek on back-to-back weekends for the first time ever this December.

The racing will be paired with a multi-day festival including concerts, family activities, the Beers of Prey beer tasting, gatherings, celebrations, and more in Beaver Creek December 6-15.

The approved men’s and women’s racing calendar includes:

Dec. 3-5 Men’s downhill training
Dec. 6 Men’s downhill
Dec. 7 Men’s super G
Dec. 8 Men’s giant slalom

Dec. 11-13 Women’s downhill training
Dec. 14 Women’s downhill
Dec. 15 Women’s super G

The announcement was made today by the nonprofit Vail Valley Foundation, which leads the event Local Organizing Committee (LOC), together with the International Ski Federation (FIS), U.S. Ski & Snowboard, Vail Resorts, Beaver Creek Resort, the Beaver Creek Resort Company, and other sponsors and partners. The announcement came after the FIS calendar was confirmed today at a meeting in Iceland.

“This will be a celebration not-to-be missed. Our community has hosted and organized FIS Alpine World Cups for over 50 years and we are home to some of the best alpine ski racers in history,” said Mike Imhof, President of the Vail Valley Foundation. “We are grateful to our friends and partners at U.S. Ski & Snowboard, Beaver Creek, and Beaver Creek Resort Company for their support this year in adding women’s racing and we want to express our sincere thanks to the FIS for this opportunity. We look forward to joining together with our partners to once again welcome the world to the iconic slopes of Beaver Creek and the legendary Birds of Prey racecourse.”

“We are thrilled to welcome a women’s speed World Cup this year, combining with the men’s racing, to showcase Beaver Creek Resort as a world-class destination,” said Bobby Murphy, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Beaver Creek Resort. “Our Birds of Prey racecourse at Beaver Creek is iconic, and we’re proud to offer a truly inclusive resort experience with both men and women competing in the same venue.”

“We are so excited to bring a women’s speed World Cup to the United States,” said President and CEO of U.S. Ski & Snowboard Sophie Goldschmidt. “The opportunity to showcase the world’s best women alpine skiers in Colorado is an incredible opportunity for our community and fanbase.”

“Beaver Creek has always been an important stop on our World Cup tour. Now, being able to return not only with speed races but also with a giant slalom—the first one since 2019—adds a great value,” said Markus Waldner, FIS World Cup Men’s Chief Race Director. “We are all looking forward to skiing this challenging slope across three different disciplines.”

“I am very happy and proud to return to Beaver Creek with the Women’s World Cup after more than 10 years,” said Peter Gerdol, FIS World Cup Women’s Chief Race Director. “The summer inspection will take place the second week of July and we will analyze the key sections of the Bird of Prey to arrive at the first speed event of the season in the best possible way. The slope is challenging but I am confident that our female skiers will manage to face the slope and provide a great show.”

Women and men haven’t raced together at Beaver Creek since the Vail/Beaver Creek 2015 Alpine World Ski Championships.

Racing on home soil

Top Stifel U.S. Alpine Ski Team athlete, Vail Valley local, and the winningest skier of all time, Mikaela Shiffrin, is slated to compete in front of her hometown fans.

“I love racing at Beaver Creek,” Shiffrin said. “I have a lot of great memories skiing there, particularly from World Champs in 2015. It’s an iconic World Cup speed track with a best in the world course crew – The Talon Crew – and the surface is always incredible. It’s been inspiring to watch the men ski on one the best speed tracks on the World Cup tour, and I’m excited the women will get a chance to ski on it this year too. Plus, we’re on the road for more than half the year, so it’s going to be a treat to be racing so close to home and be able to sleep in my own bed. Can’t wait to see all of the fans out there cheering!”

The men’s races will once again feature a giant slalom for the first time since 2019, which is good news for another locally-born-and-raised Stifel U.S. Alpine Ski Team athlete, River Radamus.

Radamus, a tech specialist who also races speed events, has been a fan favorite at the Birds of Prey races in recent years.

“I’m so fired up about the newest addition to next season’s World Cup at Birds of Prey,” said Radamus. “Adding women to the schedule is going to give fans an opportunity to see even more of the best skiers in the world, and I’m personally so excited about the return of one of the best giant slalom tracks on the circuit.”

The women’s race provides the first time that the younger generation of speed-event racers on the Stifel U.S. Alpine Ski Team will have an opportunity to compete on home snow, including top downhiller Bella Wright.

“I am so happy that I get to ski on home snow next season!” said Stifel U.S. Alpine Ski Team athlete Bella Wright.

In 2015, Vail and Beaver Creek hosted the Alpine Ski World Championships, but the last time that women have competed on the slopes of Beaver Creek in an official World Cup (as opposed to a Championships) was in 2013. In 2011, women raced a modified version of the Birds of Prey super G course to make up a Val-d’Isère race; Lindsey Vonn (USA) was victorious in that contest.

This December, top USA and international athletes will compete on the iconic Birds of Prey course, known as one of the most difficult in the world. All the world’s best racers will all have a chance to experience the thrill of racing at the Stifel Birds of Prey Audi FIS Ski World Cup in 2024.

Surrounding festivities throughout 10-day event window

The dual-weekend of racing provides an opportunity for the Vail Valley Foundation and its partners to host a multi-day festival of winter culture, concerts, VIP parties, sponsor activations, and much more in Beaver Creek throughout the Dec. 6-15 timeframe.

Organizers are already into the planning stages to welcome concerts to Beaver Creek Village, as well as the always-popular “Beers of Prey” beer tasting event, giveaways and prizes, sponsor activations, and many other fun and exciting activities.

More information will be available soon on this site, and on Instagram and Facebook.

Learn more about the nonprofit Vail Valley Foundation, which hosts the Birds of Prey races each year, at vvf.org.

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