Two-time Olympian Leanne Smith followed her older sister Laurel into skiing, latched onto racing and continues to shave microseconds from her time. A NorAm champion and topflight junior skier, she inked a spot on the World Cup elite after finishing 23rd in her career first World Cup start, which also happened to be the first downhill of the 2008 season. It was only five years before she was standing on the World Cup podium in Val d'Isere.
Again plagued with injury in 2016, Smith was out much of the season but is spending the summer in Park City working hard in the Center of Excellence gym and well on her way to recovery and being stronger than ever. Talk about fighter. This athlete is the defiition of the word. When Smith is healthy and confident enough to put it all on the line, she’s a contender for the podium in every race she starts. Look out for her in 2017, when her Live Free or Die Granite State mentality will be back in the start gate.
On skis at six, Smith skied at Cranmore, the heralded Mount Washington Valley ski area made famous when instructional legend Hannes Schneider arrived there from Austria in 1938. Smith skied for Cranmore’s race team until she entered Kennett H.S., where she continued racing. She spent a year at UNH and took leave for winter ’07, when she moved to the Mount Washington Valley Ski Team. She then erupted, having a breakout season as a double NorAm champion, which led her directly to the World Cup and the U.S. Ski Team.
OFF THE SNOW
Smith loves mountain biking, fly fishing, rock climbing–sometimes all in the same day, especially in the Mt. Washington Valley. When not stomping around the Granite State, check for her in Park City training at the Center of Excellence and taking in all that the Wasatch has to offer. Music wise, it's across the board with Smith: The Roots, Tallest Man On Earth, Modest Mouse and every now again, she'll throw some "trashy hip hop song" on the iPhone playlist. "I've been known to throw in a little Wu-Tang from time to time...and country music."