It is certainly a rare occurrence to earn All-America honors four times by an athlete’s junior season.
However, for junior alpine men’s ski team member Matt Couture, first-place finishes have become routine.
Couture has had a tremendous amount of success in his first two seasons at Castleton including six first-place finishes, three second-place finishes and one third. And one of his victories was the slalom title at the 2015 USCSA Eastern Regional Championship.
The combination of finishes helped elevate Couture to the 2015 ECSC MaConnell Division skier of the year as well as being named to the USCSA All-Eastern Regional Team.
Many skiers would be content with that, but Couture isn’t done yet.
“I would like to win the overall for the division this year as well as going back to nationals and having success,” Couture said.
Teammate, Tyler Smith isn’t hoping for more success for Couture; he knows its coming.
“He already has a few wins under his belt this season and I don’t think he’ll be letting off the gas anytime soon,” he said.
Couture has become the king of consistency on the slopes, but many wonder how?
Head Alpine Skiing Coach, Chris Eder attests that Couture’s success is no surprise.
“He does all the right things as far as training goes. Matt is always one of the guys trying to get faster and faster by getting an extra run in,” he said.
Couture feels his abilities have a lot to do with his background in skiing.
“I am different from other skiers in the division because of how I look at ski racing. I’ve been doing it my whole life. When it comes to this time of the year it’s all I really focus on,” he said.
Eder also said Couture clearly has talent on the course, but he said his best attribute is not so common.
“Matt is smart. He understands the fine line between being fast and finishing his two runs. That’s what sets him apart; he’s smart but he can ski fast,” Eder said.
After six races, Couture is in fourth place in the ECSC MacConnell division, but it’s a very slim margin between Couture and his competitor sitting in first place.
If Couture can continue to ski at a high level, Eder and others believe he will certainly be able to make it back to Nationals where he thrived last year finishing 10th overall.
Couture and the Spartans are back on the slopes on Feb. 20 at Pat’s Peak.