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Sun Valley’s Dasha Romanov Tests Her Speed in the Arctic Circle
Dasha Romanov earned a silver medal—and a box of giant Idaho potatoes—at the 2023 U.S. Alpine Championships in Sun Valley as her father Oleg watched.
Sunday, November 12, 2023


Dasha Romanov made her World Cup debut on Saturday in Reindeer Land. The Sun Valley Education Foundation ski racer was Mikaela Shiffrin’s teammate in the Levi World Cup Slalom amidst “full-on winter conditions” in Finnish Lapland.

Olympic champion Petra Vlhova of Slovakia dominated the first women’s World Cup slalom of the season, winning both runs and chalking up a comfortable 1.41-second finish ahead of second-place finisher Lena Duerr of Germany. Austrian Katharina Liensberger finished third and Shiffrin fourth, coming back from a training crash in which she straddled a gate incurring a bone bruise.

While Romanov did not finish in the top 10, just racing in the World Cup fulfilled a longtime dream. She thought she’d have to create her own World Cup start by chalking up good finishes in the NorAm races so the opportunity to compete in the first World Cup Slalom of the season came as a surprise.

Romanov told that she’s 100 percent healthy after having surgery in April to remove an inflamed bursa—a small sac filled with lubricating fluid--on her inside ankle bone. She had already had reconstructive surgery on her ankle to repair years of wear and tear from skiing and gymnastics several years ago.

“I found out the news officially on a Tuesday or Wednesday night. Then I flew out on a Saturday so it was a pretty quick turnaround,” she told Edie Thys Morgan of

Romanov, who medaled at the 2023 U.S. Alpine Championships in Sun Valley last April, comes from skiing stock.

Her grandparents were avid ski mountaineers in the Soviet Union where her grandfather and father Oleg were ski racers. Her mother Elena was a gymnast who learned to ski after she met her husband. Her cousin Anna Romanova raced for the Russian national team.

Dasha was sliding around on plastic skis at 16 months. She competed in gymnastics for 12 years before deciding to concentrate on ski racing. During high school she left her family in Colorado to attend the Sun Valley Community School’s Sun Valley Ski Academy and after one post-grad gap year was named to the US Ski Team’s D Team in 2021.

She told Eye on Sun Valley during the U.S. National Alpine Championships that moving to Sun Valley was the right decision for her skiing, even though it felt seemed like she did it on the spur of the moment.  She praises Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation coaches Pat Savaria and Will Brandenburg and the support of others in Sun Valley for helping her get to the world stage. Her World Cup teammates include Paula Moltzan, AJ Hurt, Zoe Zimmermann and Lila Lapanja.

Romanov considers napping to be her super power. She sleeps at least 10 hours the night before a race. And, true to form, she snoozed before her winning her silver medal at last year’s U.S. Alpine Championships in Sun Valley.

Romanov is one of 10 Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation athletes and/or alumni representing U.S. National Teams in 2023-24.

They are:

  • Chase Josey, U.S. Snowboard Halfpipe Team (SVSEF Snowboarding Alum)
  • Colin Hanna, U.S. Alpine Development (D) Team (SVSEF Alpine Alum)
  • Dasha Romanov, U.S. Alpine C Team (SVSEF Alpine Alum)
  • Finnigan Donley, U.S. Alpine Development (D) Team (SVSEF Alum)
  • Jack Smith, U.S. Alpine C Team (SVSEF Alpine Alum)
  • Jake Adicoff, U.S. ParaNordic Team (SVSEF XC Gold Team)
  • Jesse Keefe, U.S. ParaAlpine A Team (SVSEF Alpine Alum)
  • Johnny Hagenbuch, U.S. Cross Country B Team (SVSEF XC Alum)
  • Sammy Smith, U.S. Cross Country Development (D) Team (SVSEF XC Gold Team)
  • Sydney Palmer-Leger, U.S. Cross Country B Team (SVSEF XC Alum)

The Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation, founded in 1966,  will field more than 850 athletes this winter  on 31 teams across seven disciplines: Alpine, Big Mountain, Cross Country, Freeski , Freestyle, Mini X and Snowboarding. To learn more, visit

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