USSA has approved an online (actually take home) Competition Official training packet and test. Click on the link above and save the pdf file to your computer. Read through the material and take the test at the end of the packet. To get credit for completing the online CO course, scan the completed and signed test and e-mail it to: Stephen Schowengerdt, IMD Alpine Officials chairman.
USSA officials work in the most beautiful offices on the face of the Earth, this one at Snowbird, Utah.
A frequently asked question at the alpine official training sessions each fall is, "How do I get to be a Level I, Level II or higher official in USSA?"
Here is how you do it:
The first step you must take is joining USSA as an alpine official. With this registration you receive the USSA Competition Guide and the Alpine Officials CD. The Comp Guide is a handbook for athletes, parents, coaches and officials that provides a roadmap to USSA programs. The guide contains information on rules, rankings and races. The CD contains the Comp Guide, the Alpine Officials Manual, the gate judge video, the FIS rule book and precisions, the master packet of race forms and more.
Just signing up and paying your fee to be an official will get you on the hill, but how much help are you going to be to a race organizer or jury if you don't know what to do and you don't know the rules?
An important ingredient in the Alpine Officials Program is education and in Intermountain Division we hold several alpine official training sessions each fall in the north and the south segments of the division. The seminar dates and locations each year, usually in October and November, are announced toward the end of the summer. Watch for them on this web page.
The quizzes and discussion area here in Alpine 101 are also good opportunities to learn about ski racing and its rules. All of the quizzes include references to the rules so they can easily be looked up in the USSA Competiton Regulations, which are also included in the Comp Guide. Jury problems are posted in the Alpine 101 forum so they can be discussed and analyzed away from the pressure of race day.
As high as you can go the Salt Lake Olympic Winter Games men's downhill jury begins a meeting at Snowbasin.
Gain experience as an alpine official by volunteering at competitions on the Intermountain Division and USSA calendar. There is no better training ground than actual on-hill or race shack work experience under the tutelage of an experienced race official.
If you want to achieve higher levels of ranking as an alpine official, you must track your work experience and report it to your divisional alpine officials chairman. In Intermountain you can find out who that person is in the "About" section of this web site.
You should send your work history to the AO Chairman at the end of each season. He sends his certification level updates to USSA in the first two weeks of May each year.
Alpine officials are certified in nine specialty areas:
There are five certification levels for officials in USSA called Level 1, Level 2, etc. For specifics on what is required to move from one level to the next in each of the eight specialty areas, see the USSA Alpine Officials Certification Guidelines.
If you have questions about becoming or working as an official in Intermountain Division, feel free to post them in the Officials Forum on this web site. Knowledgable alpine officials visit this web site each day and they are happy to help. You can also send your inquiries to the IMD Alpine Officials Chairman if you would rather not take your question public.