Athletes from around the globe are in Vermont for this weekend’s Women’s Audi FIS Ski World Cup races at Killington Resort—and 40,000 fans or more are expected to descend on Rutland County for the festivities.
The racers will compete for points on the World Cup tour, and also for one-of-a-kind trophies crafted by the team at a company famous for its glass creations.
“It’s definitely fitting for the World Cup,” said Mark Williams, a Simon Pearce master glassblower, describing the Killington Cup trophy’s design that resembles a blizzard.
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Inside the Windsor workshop of Simon Pearce, Williams and fellow glass master Jeff Pellerin turned out the trophies for the World Cup winners at Killington.
“It’s really a great privilege to be asked to share our craft and to be asked to make something for them,” Williams said.
Simon Pearce also produced the prizes when Killington hosted the competition in 2016, 2017, and 2018. Racing phenom Mikaela Shiffrin has those years’ creations in her trophy case.
The 2019 design is a modification of the brand’s new Sterling Pond Hurricane, with icy droplets of glass all around the exterior.
“When you put a candle in there, it really makes a cool design on the walls and ceiling and your table,” Williams said.
Killington Resort spokeswoman Courtney DiFiore said partnering with the Vermont-based retail business is part of its larger effort to promote the state as a destination to the World Cup’s international audience.
“We really want to showcase our wonderful state,” DiFiore said of Vermont. “It’s amazing, and we want to bring in the unique parts of it so that the athletes from around the world can see what we have to offer.”
The first-place trophies weigh eight or so pounds apiece. They’re labor intensive to make, and require two master craftsmen to team up for the job.
“Growing up in Vermont, my whole life, skiing and snowboarding most of my life, when I was asked to do this I was actually very honored to do it,” Pellerin said of the assignment to craft the World Cup trophies. “Making something for some of the top athletes in the world — it’s truly amazing.”
Pellerin said he likes Shiffrin’s chances at taking home another Killington Cup, considering she’s an expert in East Coast ski conditions.
Williams and Pellerin said they will be cheering for Shiffrin and all the athletes competing at Killington.
“It’ll be really cool to see that and say, ‘Hey I made that,’” Williams said of knowing elite athletes will take home his handiwork.
For more information on the Killington Cup, click here.