Four skiers to represent St. Mike’s in Alpine and Nordic at NCAA Championships

March 1, 2024
Izzy Quam '25

This year, Saint Michael’s College is sending four skiers to the NCAA National Collegiate Championship in Steamboat Springs, CO. Three of the skiers will represent Saint Michael’s Alpine team and one skier will represent Saint Michael’s Nordic team.  

Simen Strand (Photo by Gil Talbot)

Senior and captain, Simen Strand ’24, from Nedre Høvik, Norway, is heading to his third NCAAs for alpine skiing. He said he is excited to experience Colorado.  

“I will probably pack a camera to take some photos and swimming shorts if there is a cold plunge or jacuzzi available,” Strand said. He is also looking forward to competing against the best skiers in the country and seeing his friends.  

Strand’s warm-up routine consists of memorizing the course and said his favorite post-race snacks are banana bread, Idaho potatoes, and Kombucha. Strand said a fun fact about himself is that he loves dancing to ABBA.  

Gray Flanagan (Photo by Gil Talbot)

Gray Flanagan ’26 from West Burke, VT, is heading to his second NCAAs for alpine skiing. He said he is looking forward to the Slalom night race, which starts at 9:30 p.m. He is also looking forward to skiing in sunny Colorado and is planning to pack sunscreen.

Helene Kristoffersen (Photo by Gil Talbot)

Helene Kristoffersen ’25 from Rælingen, Norway, is also heading to her third NCAAs for alpine skiing. Kristoffersen is looking forward to experiencing Colorado.  

“I’ve never been there before so I’m super excited to go there and see how it is, as well as see my friends who go to colleges on the West Coast!”  

Kristoffersen has more of a specific pre-race routine.  

“I always put on Saint Michael’s College tattoos and glitter when we get to the hill. Other than that, I like to do a free run before I go up for my run,” Kristoffersen said. “I listen to music at the start while I warm up for my run.”

She always wears the same purple and gold hair ribbons— Saint Michael’s colors— that she made with the rest of the Alpine team.  

Like Strand, Kristoffersen’s favorite post-race snack is banana bread specifically baked by Michelle Jordan, the Marketing and Communications Manager at Saint Michael’s. Kristoffersen said she might also pack her mom’s Norwegian cake mix to bake for fun. A fun fact about Kristoffersen is that she can juggle.  

“I can do it a little, but I’m not great at it. Still trying to improve the time of how long I can juggle,” Kristoffersen said.

Henrik Wist (Photo by Gil Talbot)

First-year Henrik Wist from Trondheim, Norway, is the lone Nordic skier representing the Purple Knights. He is Saint Michael’s first NCAA Nordic qualifier since 1999. He is looking forward to seeing the West and racing against a competitive field. Wist will be racing both 20k classic and the 7.5k skate but said he “definitely likes classic better.”  

Wist’s fun fact is that he does not like skate skiing. 

Wist explained that he does not have a specific pre-race routine the day of the race, but he eats a lot of ice cream and drinks a lot of chocolate milk the day before. He had the most unique post-race favorite snack of the group: oysters.  

The skiers head to Steamboat on Sunday, March 3. The Alpine races begin with Giant Slalom on March 6 followed by Slalom on March 8. The Nordic races begin on March 7 with a 7.5k skate followed by a mass start 20k classic race on March 9. 

The NCAA Championship will be webcast live on Complete multimedia links will be available through

Follow us on social.