US Ski & Snowboard JUNIOR RACING - FAQ's AND BASIC INFORMATION

This information sheet covers CXC Junior Cup Races and Junior Nationals. If you are an advanced racer and are interested in pursuing 2020 U.S. Cross Country Championships, as well as potential selection to the US Ski Team World Junior and U18 Scandanavian Cup Teams, please contact Liz Peterson at liz.peterson@enduranceunited.org.

What is US Ski & Snowboard, and what are CXC Junior cup races, and Junior Nationals (“JNs”)?

US Ski & Snowboard is the national governing body for skiing in the United States, and the parent organization of the US Ski Team.  As part of the US Ski Team development pipeline, US Ski & Snowboard sponsors Junior Nationals each year – a week-long competition in March with skiers from different regional teams.  Each US Ski & Snowboard region (Minnesota is in the Midwest division) holds Junior National Qualifier races (CXC Junior Cup) to determine selections to their respective teams.

Do I have to be a top skier to participate in Junior cups?

No!  Most Junior Cups are part of larger race events and not limited to “top skiers.”  Even if you do not feel fast enough to qualify for Junior Nationals this year, the experience of racing Junior Cups will help you become a better ski racer! Plus there are opportunities to qualify for other trips such as the U18 Trip and U16 NENSA Trip.

Why should I try to qualify for Junior Nationals?

Junior National results are the primary tool used by college ski coaches to evaluate prospective college recruits.  Most importantly, Junior Cup weekends are a lot of fun, a great way to ski at different venues in the region, and an opportunity to meet other junior skiers outside your high school team.

How does Junior National qualifying work?

Here in the Midwest Region, the Central Cross-Country Ski Association (CXC) administers the JN qualification process.  In general, skiers earn points based on Junior Cup results.  The Junior National Team consists of approximately equal numbers of skiers from each age group based on results from the four Junior Cup weekends.

How can Endurance United help?

We provide coaching, waxing, and logistical support at Junior Cup races.  

When and where are the Junior National Qualifiers this season?

Click HERE for 2019/2020 schedule. Be sure you are looking at SUPER JNQ’s or Midwest Qualifiers and NOT Great Lakes Qualifiers.

How do I sign up?

If you are new to Junior Cups, please email Liz Peterson (liz.peterson@enduranceunited.org) to discuss your goals, and decide which Junior Cup weekends will be best for you.  Then, Junior Cup sign-up for everybody is as follows:

  • Click HERE to sign up with EU for all four or selected Junior Cup weekends. The fee will cover all your waxing and coaching for the weekend.

  • In accordance with U.S. Ski and Snowboard sanctioning requirements, all non youth skiers (ages 14 and over) must be registered with the U.S. Ski & Snowboard to enter the CXC Cup races. You will need to purchase a Cross Country General Membership at the very least ($55). With this membership, you will be provided Divisional Ranking List points, but will not receive National Ranking List (NRL) points. NRL points are required to at Junior Nationals. Click HERE for details on membership and to register.

  • Consider a US Ski & Snowboard cross country competitor (U16+) membership ($155). If you qualify for the Midwest Team, and plan to attend Junior Nationals, you will need a competitor membership. Early and annual competitor membership allows advantageous accumulation of NRL points. Lower NRL points based on improving results will give you better starting spots in Junior Cup and JN races (especially helpful in mass start races). NRL points are cumulative throughout an athlete’s entire ski career. In addition to JN results, college coaches do look at accumulated NRL points when evaluating prospective recruits. Click HERE to purchase a US Ski & Snowboard cross country competitor (U16+) membership.

  • Sign up for each Junior Cup race at the website of the ski club hosting each Junior Cup weekend. You must individually sign yourself up for each race in which you want to ski (this is not part of the Endurance United coach/wax support fee). NOTE: DO NOT sign up for any race that says "high school." These races are for the high school racers in that area, they are not Junior Cup races. Make sure anything you sign up for says Junior Cup, US Ski & Snowboard, or something of that nature.

For out-of-town Junior Cups, how do I get there and where do I stay?

Athletes either travel and lodge with their parents, or arrange to travel with another athlete’s family.  You are also welcome to contact the EU junior coaches for assistance in coordination with other families and athletes.