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USS Names the 2021 Short Track Development Skaters of the Year

April 27, 2021, 6:20 p.m. (ET)

Name: Louisiana Stahl
Age: 16
Club: Flushing Meadows Speedskating Club
Coach: Serhiy Lifyrenko 

Who inspires you in speed skating?
I look up to Suzanne Schulting because she is untouchable when she races. She built her strength from training and worked her way up to the top of the list. 


Where will you be in ten years?
In ten years, I hope to be an accomplished Olympian. I also hope to have graduated from college and be working in the STEM field. 


What other sports do you play?
I recently joined the track team at the Bronx High School of Science. 


What are your other hobbies?
I enjoy darkroom photography, and specialized in film photography in my middle school. When I have free time, I like to run, as well as bake. I’ve also been in the girl scouts since I was five. 


How did you get involved in speed skating?
I had been a figure skater for eight years and the Speedskating club always had ice right after me. They let me try on skates once for free, and the rest is history. I think I always loved being on ice, I was just waiting to find the right sport. 


What would you consider your greatest accomplishment?
Making it onto the Junior Development team and being named the Skater of the year definitely takes the cake for my top accomplishment. 


What is your favorite subject in school?
I enjoy math the most because every part of it is logical. There is always one concise answer, and even though the formulas can be tricky, and the answer can be convoluted, once the reasoning clicks, the math comes easy. 


What are your goals for speed skating in the next few years?
I hope to skate well in the next Junior Nationals so that I can make it onto the team that goes to Junior Worlds. 


What is your favorite exercise during dryland training?
During dryland, my favorite exercise is crossovers, because it best replicates the lean and control (as well as lack thereof) that you feel on the ice. 


What’s your favorite post-race snack?
I’m always hungry after race weekends, and usually crave bagels.


Where is your favorite place to race?
Utah Olympic Oval is my favorite place to race. There really is no ice like it on the East coast, where I skate. 


What’s your craziest hidden talent?
I also do taxidermy, which most people find either thrilling or revolting. 


Anything else you’d like to share?
Throughout the past year, I feel grateful that I was able to continue skating and training to the extent that I have been. With the pandemic came endless red-tape for athletes all over the world. After having been isolated without racing or having camps for so long, I feel accomplished to have been able to improve the amount that I did. 



Name: Ray Shim
Age: 14
Club: FAST Team (Utah Olympic Oval)
Coach: Geng Li

Who inspires you in speed skating?
I was inspired by Victor Ahn since I was little, and when I saw Victor Ahn skate in the recent World Cup in Salt lake City, I felt the urge to want to become like him.


Where will you be in ten years?
I can’t imagine myself in 10 years. I’m still 14. Hopefully, I’m skating internationally. (?)


What other sports do you play?
I started to dip my toes into breakdancing.


What are your other hobbies?
I love to ski in the winter. Skiing is a hobby of mine that I think has lots of different ways of having fun. I guess I gear towards the winter side in sports.


How did you get involved in speed skating?
My mother has been a big fan of Victor Ahn since I was very little, and got my brother to start skating. After seeing my brother skate while I was watching, I begged my mother to start skating.


What would you consider your greatest accomplishment?
My biggest accomplishment so far would be that I placed 2nd in 500m at the Am cup March 2021.


What is your favorite subject in school?
None… I like all subjects. haha….


What are your goals for speed skating in the next few years?
I want to be able to join the Junior team in the next few years.


What is your favorite exercise during dryland training?
If I were to choose one, I would choose power jumps and sprints.


What’s your favorite post-race snack?
Soy milk?


Where is your favorite place to race?
Of course the Utah Olympic Oval.


What’s your craziest hidden talent?
It’s hidden, so I don’t know...