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XC Burke

Burke Mountain Academy

Burke Mountain Academy (BMA), located in East Burke, VT was founded in 1970 by Warren Witherell. The ski academy was developed to give aspiring alpine ski racers the opportunity to maximize their ski training during the morning hours while studying for academics during the afternoons. 

In 1981, BMA hired John Sackett of Lyndonville, VT to start a cross-country ski program. The program was relatively small compared to the alpine counterpart but offered equal nordic training opportunities for the cross-country ski racers. Sackett coached some of the east’s top junior racers including Olympian Laura Wilson. A few years following Sackett’s departure, Matt Whitcomb took over as head nordic coach and was instrumental in the development of Liz Stephen, the USST’s top distance skier. Whitcomb is currently the USST head women’s coach. 

Over the years, the BMA program has had nordic skiers in the 1992, 1994, 1998, and 2010 Olympics. Vermont Nordic Olympians from BMA included Laura Wilson, Brenda White, and Liz Stephen.