Sports Illustrated writer Tim Layden wrote in his profile of Mikaela Shiffrin prior to the Sochi Olympics in 2014, “When Shiffrin was six her parents had a poster autographed for her by three-time U.S. Olympian Heidi Voelker, who wrote beneath her signature, “A.B.F.T.T.B.” and translated: “Always Be Faster Than the Boys.” Shiffrin wrote it on her skis as a junior racer, and now it’s a decal on her Atomic racing helmet, connecting the small child to the grown-up racer.” Prior to the PyeongChang 2018 games, NBC took the ball and ran and created a commercial to air during the Super Bowl that featured the young phenom and her now-famous mantra.
Just as US Olympian Heidi Voelker inspired a young Mikaela Shiffrin to ski faster than her competition with the mantra Always Be Faster Than The Boys (A.B.F.T.T.B.), Mikaela is now inspiring a new generation of young ski racers with the mantra as well. A couple of these young ski racers we happen to know and admire.
Vermont ski racer Chloe Avery
The cover photo for this post is of 11 year old Smugglers Notch Ski and Snowboard Club racer, Chloe Avery. This photo is from a series of photos from her dad, where you can clearly see she is attacking this lip harder and jumping higher than her brother did!
Chloe has been skiing since she was 3 and racing since 5. She has 3 older brothers (all athletes) and she is as tough as they come. After every race, this young ski racer makes sure to look at the boys times and where she stacks. This kid totally lives by the mantra A.B.F.T.T.B. and we think she rocks!
Snowbird Ski Team racer Emily Grace
On skis for the first time at age 2, in ski programs by age 4 and racing at age 7, Emily Grace just loves to ski! Emily is a first-year U14 ski racer on the Snowbird Ski Team. She has always been inspired by Mikaela Shiffrin’s mantra. In fact, Emily has A.B.F.T.T.B. written on her helmet as a constant reminder to Always Be Faster Than the Boys.
On race days, she has her teammates get her mad at the start. She even has her coach tell her that boys are stronger skiers than girls to light a fire in her belly. This gives Emily the extra push to have a strong start. Making bets with her teammates on candy on who can ski the fastest. This girl has a passion and dedication to the sport that is second to none.
These two girls are an inspiration to us and we hope to young girls everywhere. Be strong, ski hard and Always Be Faster Than the Boys!
Watch the NBC Mikaela Shiffrin Commercial:
Mikaela Shiffrin is starring in a Super Bowl commercial this year. So, that's amazing. 🏈🇺🇸🎿
Posted by U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team on Monday, January 29, 2018
Video courtesy of US Ski & Snowboard Team