The famed Kelly Brush Race Arena (KBRA) is home to GMVS training and racing today, but did you know that before KBRA had two dedicated training trails (Inverness and Brambles), GMVS athletes trained on numerous trails at Sugarbush. 

At Mt. Ellen, athletes trained on Elbow, Rim Run, Cliffs, Exterminator, Upper FIS, Northstar, Cruiser, Which Way, Sugar Run, Riemergasse, Graduation, Looking Good and Tumbler. Some days, they would venture to Lincoln Peak and train on Spring Fling, Snowball, Racer’s Edge, Lexi’s Twist, Organgrinder, Waterfall, and Hot Shot. As safety standards evolved, so did our list of trails to train on and we’re lucky to have the world-class venue that we have today.


GMVS is thrilled to announce that it was recently presented with three awards for its outstanding performance in Alpine and Nordic programming. For its junior (Club) programming led by Lorant Gudasz and Sally Utter as well as its work with the Mad River Valley BKL program, GMVS received the 2023 Development Club of the Year Award, and Nordic Program Director Colin Rodgers received the 2023 U.S. Ski & Snowboard Coach of the Year and 2023 Cross Country International Coach of the Year Awards.

Introduced in 2019, the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Development Club of the Year Award is an award presented to a U.S. Ski & Snowboard member Club which has distinguished itself in providing outstanding youth development programs. This year, the nomination committee stated, “Green Mountain Valley School provides exceptional programming for athletes ages 6 – 13, focused on skill development as well as age and developmentally appropriate gate training – all in the spirit of building strong skiers who have a lot of fun. To reduce barriers and encourage participation, they have a robust financial aid program and supplement equipment as needed. In addition to the outstanding alpine program, the GMVS Ski Club is deeply engaged with the local Bill Koch Youth Ski League, introducing young people to the lifelong sport of cross-country skiing with its recreational, social, fitness, and competitive opportunities.”

Nordic Program Director Colin Rodgers received the 2023 U.S. Ski & Snowboard Coach of the Year and 2023 Cross Country International Coach of the Year Awards. U.S. Ski & Snowboard Coach of the Year Awards are given in each sport to a U.S. Ski & Snowboard staff or U.S. Ski & Snowboard Competition Club coach based on outstanding contribution to either the domestic program or international program, resulting in high-level performance of his or her athletes in domestic or international competition during the past season. Each U.S. Ski & Snowboard Sport Committee makes selections.

This year, the Cross Country Sport Committee submitted the following nomination: “Colin has now been the Nordic Director and Head Coach at the Green Mountain Valley School for many years. Under Colin’s leadership, the program has blossomed to one of the best cross-country development academies in the U.S. Colin’s extensive knowledge of the sport, his passion for developing ski racers, and his enthusiasm has been magnetic in building the GMVS roster and program. This season, Colin led the U18 Scandinavian Championships trip for the USA to Finland. The U18 Scandinavian Championships is an elite-level competition featuring the best U18s from Norway, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, and the USA. As a nation, we’ve been participating in this Championships for nearly 25 years. This season, one of the GMVS athletes under Colin’s tutelage, Tabor Greenberg, won the individual distance race. This is the first time in history that a USA athlete has won the competition. The following day, the USA men’s relay team also grabbed gold – another historic first. These types of results are indicative of the extremely good work that Colin is doing each day at GMVS.”

Colin and Lorant attended the 2023 U.S. Ski & Snowboard Congress Awards Dinner, in Park City, Utah on the evening of Wednesday, May 17th where they were presented with the awards.


When was the last time you photographed a goat or a chicken? How about a cow? GMVS students have been photographing live animals year after year. What started with a dark room in the basement of Clark is now a digital and outside operation. Housed in the DPC Art Center, you can see photographs of handsome Goliath the Goat and beautiful Gloria the Chicken opposite glamorous pictures of past human theater stars. The animals may lack the makeup and lighting of the actors, but they are still stars.


In the early ‘80s Spring Term at GMVS was packed with experiential learning opportunities, famously highlighted by the legendary four to six week western outdoor “Senior Trip.” For younger students, the spring schedule offered academic classes Monday through Thursday,  followed by three day adventure-based outdoor educational trips every weekend. Some groups traveled in vans or staff cars, while others students embarked on their trip in the school’s traditional yellow school bus. One weekend Steve Utter and Ashley Cadwell were assigned the bus for their adventure trip. They developed a vague plan (those on this trip may consider this characterization generous) of where they were going to take the kids, through Central Vermont, near Ashley’s childhood home in the southern Champlain Valley, but didn’t share details–scant as they were (if they even existed!)–with the kids. Steve and Ash assembled the kids and teed up their adventure by playing the iconic 60’s rock song Magic Bus by “The Who”, then boarded the bus and left. From that moment, students and staff alike dubbed the school bus as ‘The Magic Bus’.

GMVS owned several ski buses in the first ten years of its existence, most known colloquially as the Magic Bus. The final Magic Bus met its end with Steve at the wheel, driving kids to Lincoln Peak for a morning of skiing. Ascending German Flats Road, with the motor billowing smoke, Steve pulled into the Common Man parking lot and unloaded the kids as the engine caught fire. Motor blown, the bus was towed away–and we’ve only used vans for transportation since that day. There is some GMVS bus lore that may or may not be true–doing donuts in the Spruce Peak parking lot, ripping the facade off the Waitsfield Village covered bridge, the senior class entering their graduation ceremony riding on a modified version of the bus that died earlier that year with Steve at the helm, and the City of NY towing the bus in Manhattan while on an all-school trip, stranding students and staff. There may have even been a bus named Hugo, named after Hurricane Hugo that hit the eastern United States in 1989, or was the Magic Bus actually Hugo?  We can haggle and reminisce over those details when we all gather next month for the 50th!

Three GMVS Athletes Nominated to the Stifel U.S. Ski Team

GMVS congratulates three athletes who have been nominated to the Stifel U.S. Ski Team: Sawyer Reed ‘23, Ben Ritchie ‘19, and Brian Bushey ‘21.

Sawyer Reed, a senior at GMVS, has been nominated to the Stifel U.S. Alpine D-Team. Sawyer comes off a season of incredible results, including winning the GS at the 2023 National Junior Championships in March at Mittersill.

“Sawyer has a strong work ethic and keen focus that has paved a path to success athletically and academically,” notes Head of School Tracy Keller. She continues, “We are proud to offer talented, hard working athletes like Sawyer the opportunity to train and compete at the highest level while also maintaining focus on academics.” Sawyer came to GMVS in 2019 as a 9th Grader, is currently finishing off his senior year, and has been accepted to Middlebury College.

GMVS alum Ben Ritchie is also on the list of nominations for the Stifel U.S. Alpine C-Team. Ben is a multi-year member of the U.S. Ski Team, and hails from Waitsfield, Vermont, just down the road from the GMVS campus. Ben’s top three athletic accomplishments so far have been winning the World Juniors Slalom in Bansko, Bulgaria, in 2021, a thirteenth-place finish at the 2021 World Championships in Cortina, Italy, and two 2nd place finishes at World Juniors 2019.

“I want to congratulate all nominees to the Stifel U.S. Ski Team. We couldn’t be more proud to have Ben and Sawyer among those nominated. Over the years, our coaches have helped them sharpen their technical and tactical approach on the hill, and refine their mental skills so that they can embrace the rigor it takes to be ranked among the top athletes in the world,” notes GMVS Alpine Program Director, Steve Utter.

Also representing GMVS on the Stifel U.S. Ski Team for the 2023-2024 season will be Cross-Country athlete Brian Bushey, who currently skis for the University of Utah. Based on his consistent top results throughout the season, including nine top-10 finishes, Bushey has been nominated to the Stifel U.S. Ski Team’s Cross Country D-Team. 

“Everyone from the GMVS Cross Country family is excited by Brian’s nomination to the D-Team, but we are in no way surprised. He has been knocking on this door now for several seasons and to see his hard work, dedication and patience pay off is so well deserved. Keep your eye out as this is just the beginning for Brian!,” states Nordic Program Director Colin Rodgers.  

Congratulations, Sawyer, Ben and Brian!

The Hobartenkamm – Fact 32 of 50

Conceived by students for students, the Hobartenkamm was an evening competition where students (and coaches) would race down a narrow trail from the Hobarts’ home, about 500 feet above the GMVS campus, to the school, then leap over Moulton Road for a grand finish. The portmanteau name combined Al Hobart with the Hannenkamm race of Kitzbuhel. 



Did you know that GMVS is home to Olympic champions in ski racing and beyond? Randy Will, Class of 1982, like many GMVS student-athletes, arrived with the ultimate dream to top the Olympic podium. Little did he know at that time that he would achieve the dream, but not in ski racing.

Randy reflects, “The Olympic games was my ultimate goal, I had thought, why not ski racing! I remember talking to Al Hobart about my goals in 1982 and he told me, ‘If you believe in yourself in such a way, you can not fail.’” 

Randy’s ski racing career didn’t take him to the Olympics, but he was fast at the 100m. He was recruited for bobsled and made three Olympic teams – competing in the Calgary Olympics (1988), Albertville Olympics (1992), and Lillehammer Olympics (1994). In Randy’s words, “GMVS taught me that I CAN!”

The Green Mountain Valley School community is deeply saddened by the loss of Al Hobart, GMVS founder and long-serving leader in the ski racing community who guided the school through its beginning years and lasting institutional change since the school’s founding in 1973. Al passed away surrounded by loved ones in the comfort of his home.

“Al will forever be remembered for his passion for ski racing and dedication to the entire GMVS community. He was undoubtedly GMVS’s true north, guiding GMVS as an all-time great leader, and transforming the School into an international model of ski racing excellence. He was fearless in his work, driven by a passion for ski racing and a belief in the power of education to improve lives and the world,” Head of School Tracy Keller said.

“Al believed that ski racing was a humane discipline – where becoming a world class skier must start with being intentional and deliberate about being a world class person. This belief guided him throughout his life and his work as Headmaster, alpine coach, and Trustee, overseeing all aspects of the school and truly holding it in trust,” noted Alpine Program Director, Steve Utter.

GMVS Board of Trustees Chair Jamie Preston ’80 offered condolences, on a personal level and on behalf of the board. “This is a tough loss for anyone who knew Al, but particularly those of us who were lucky to have had his guidance while we were at GMVS. Al literally changed the lives of many of those who decided to go to GMVS, and not many people can make that claim, or have that ability. Moreover, given his quiet and humble nature, Al would never acknowledge his impacts, but I, and many others, know them to be true,” said Preston, who was a student at GMVS while Al was Headmaster. “Al was an incredibly kind and thoughtful person, and while he was usually the quietest person in the room, when he spoke, his words had meaning. Al had a deep love of sport, and he was a fierce competitor, on the ski hill, on his sailboat, and on the soccer field – and that drive certainly underlies the legacy he leaves as one of the founders of GMVS. I will miss his guidance, counsel and the twinkle in his eye when we got into deep discussions about sport in general and ski racing in particular. Al may be gone, but GMVSers’ lives will be forever influenced by him and his school.”

If you’re interested in learning more about Al, check out the excerpt below and click HERE for the full story released this fall to kick off our 50 facts about GMVS.

An alpine racer from New York City, Al moved to the Mad River Valley in 1963 with an undergraduate degree from Tufts University and an MBA from Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business. When he arrived, he was an active racer in the Master’s series, winning many national championships in GS and slalom. He continued to pursue his passion for ski racing and surrounded himself with like-minded individuals – the kind of people who had the fortitude to not only believe in a shared vision, but also make it come to life.

His vision began at the Mad River Glen Slalom Hill, where he installed a rope tow dedicated to alpine race training, then he founded the Valley Junior Racing Club which he ran from 1966 – 1972. It was at that time that Al recognized the need for more full-time, in-depth training which necessarily required a focused, college preparatory academic component. He, along with John Schultz, Bill Moore, and Ashley Cadwell, founded Mad River Valley School, “Mad Acad” for short (which would come to be known as Green Mountain Valley School) in his home.

When he and his wife, Jane, first opened up their home to 11 winter-term students in January 1973, the Hobarts began a life-long commitment of service to GMVS. Over the last 50 years, GMVS has been blessed with a number of highly passionate, dedicated teachers, coaches, administrators, and Trustees – all of whom have left an indelible mark on the school. But none have been as devoted as Al and Jane Hobart who have served the school for the bulk of their adult lives, in fact Al was a GMVS trustee until June of 2022 – guiding GMVS through his board service for some 40 years.

“Al Hobart leaves a profound legacy through his accomplishments and the many lives he touched. He will forever be remembered for his remarkable accomplishments,” Tracy Keller said.

GMVS is planning to celebrate Al at the 50th Anniversary Celebration June 9-11. The family requests that donations be made in Al’s honor to the GMVS Scholarship Fund.

To view the full obituary, click HERE.


Since the very beginning, GMVS alumni have gone on to the highest levels of their sport, and for many, earning All-American status has been part of that process. NCAA All-American status is earned by those who finish in the top-10 in a single event at the NCAA Championships each year. Since 1981, 62 GMVS alumni have earned All-American status representing GMVS at the NCAA Championships almost every single year. Congratulations to the following GMVS NCAA All-Americans:

Sources: The U.S. Ski Team, Ski Racing Magazine Annual Redbook of Ski Racing Results, and NCAA results

*If anyone knows of errors or omissions in any of the listings provided, please contact [email protected] to help us improve our records.


Remember standing in line waiting for Brunch to begin? The smell of bacon wafting down the stairwell? The door finally opening and the front of the hungry mob quickly flowing up the stairs. Heidi and Sandy, behind the counter, pretending to be cranky but smirking behind their scowls at the excited GMVSers. On special days, the word traveled quickly to the middle and even to the bottom of the stairs. Cries of “It’s Disney Toast!” were repeated over and over down the line. 

Describing Disney Toast as French toast is a little like saying a Lamborghini is a car. It started with slices of well-preserved, doughy, gluten-rich, white bread, which was then dunked in an egg mixture and deep fried to golden crisps and finished with dustings of cinnamon sugar. Topping their pieces were ladles of real maple syrup, squirts of whipped cream, and for the health conscious perhaps a side of fresh fruit to go with the bacon before sitting down to inhale the breakfast treat. Often the GMVSers would consume a piece and return to the line for a second or third piece. If memory serves, Cody Transue ‘06 holds the GMVS Disney Toast eating record at 11 pieces in one brunch.

Looking to relive Disney toast? Check out THIS RECIPE.