Aug. 21, 2012
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - The University of New Mexico and Lobo Skiing head coach Fredrik Landstedt are pleased to announce the hiring of Josiah (Joe) Downing as the Lobo alpine ski coach.
Downing comes to the Lobos with over six years of head coaching experience and plenty of passion for ski racing.
Landstedt says Downing's enthusiasm will make an instant impact on the Lobo ski program.
"He really wants to give 110 percent to the Lobo ski team and wants to make the team better," Landstedt said. "He knows what it takes, having been an RMISA (Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Association) regional champion and two-time All-American. He knows how to coach skiers from the ground up and can teach skill and technique from the very basics to top levels."
Downing is looking forward to working with Division I student-athletes, especially at an institution that historically does well in RMISA and NCAA competition.
"The opportunity to work for the University of New Mexico and to work with athletes at this level is really cool," Downing said. "The prospect of having national championship is very exciting. UNM has always been a strong team."
He and his wife Bwryn are also excited to become residents of New Mexico.
"My wife and I really love it here," he said. "We are looking forward to experiencing the culture, environment and we enjoy the architecture."
The Puyallup, Wash., native joins UNM's ski staff after having spent the past year as an International Ski Federation (FIS) coach at Aspen Valley Ski Club in Aspen, Colo. As part of his coaching duties, Downing served as the divisional and regional project coach as well as an event coordinator and operational lead.
From 2009-11, Downing was the lead FIS coach at Schweitzer Alpine Racing School (SARS) in Sandpoint, Idaho where he also served as divisional and regional project coach. Four of the six elite athletes he worked with at SARS are currently members of Division I ski teams at NCAA institutions.
Downing spent nearly five years (2005-09) with Loveland Racing Club as the head alpine coach/FIS ability lead coach. His goal was to create a sustainable FIS program while at Loveland. He managed several aspects of the club, including overseeing all other lead coaches and their training/education in addition to managing all on-hill operations.
Downing got his coaching start right out of college. After graduating from Western State College in 2002 with a degree in business administration, he accepted a position as an FIS coach with his home ski club, Team Alpental Snoqualmie (TAS). During the three years he spent with TAS, Downing worked with a strong group of skiers who won the Northwest Cup Team Title twice.
A two-time NCAA All-American and Western Regional Champion in Giant Slalom (2001) for the Mountaineers, Downing's passion for ski racing was sparked by his father, who raced for the University of Denver in the 1960s.
Downing also has experience in coaching with the US Ski Team (Development Team) and has served as seasonal coaching staff with the Western Region Development Project, including every summer session since 2001.
Downing replaces former alpine coach Tyler Sheperd who took a position with the University of Denver.