All Inducted In US Ski and Snowboard Hall of Fame.

Hints: Photo from Feb. 1941, Sun Valley. One of these men later enlisted in the 10th Mountain Division and was killed in action. Can you name them all?

Thanks to Alan Engen for contributing this photo from his four-volume scrapbook series, The Engen Skiing Dynasty, currently at the University of Utah, J. Willard Marriott Library Ski Archives.

Last Week

Yes, Rip McManus. We were surprised to see so many correct entries, and even anecdotes from commentators about his colorful, but much too short career in the ski business and sport.

We remember meeting Rip at an SIA Ski Industry Trade Show, back in 1970 or so. He was a smiling, fun-loving guy with a lot of energy who left a positive impression with everyone he met.

Rip was born in Boston, raised in Connecticut, and raced in the East until he went to Denver University. In 1964, we was a member of Bob Beattie’s US Olympic team. He was a three-event racer who captured North American and Canadian GS and downhill titles. At one time, he ranked 11th in the world in FIS points.

Rip left racing in 1965 and joined the Head Ski Co. as product manager and director of racing. He later moved to Lange as director of the boot division. He also consulted in marketing, ski testing, racing and product development with the Olin Ski Company.

Rip (r) in his role as TV sports commentator in Downhill Racer.

You may remember Ripper as a commentator and technical advisor to ABC-TV for the 1968 Winter Olympics, also covering the 1970 World Alpine Ski Championships for NBC-TV. He was an associate editor of Ski Racing magazine. What most people probably don’t realize is that Rip did the downhill racing sequences for the Robert Redford classic, Downhill Racer. He also played an onscreen role as a TV commentator.

He was clearly a unique character, coming up through the ranks of ski racing with few connections, little money, working on the trail crew at Stowe to earn entry fees and lift money. He did it all by himself.

Rip McManus’ life so full of potential was cut short by a traffic accident in 1982. As veteran journalist John Henry Auran wrote in a 1965 profile of McManus, “He’ll be remembered because he may be the last of his kind.”

[Note: This article was adapted from January, 1983 SKI magazine]


  1. love the photo open neck shirt and 1 with a tie,bet their run down the hill would still be faster than mine on mod kit…thats life,, enjoy John

  2. Spent several years testing Olin skis with Rip at Olin ski co.,yes he was one of a kind and still miss him , cheers , franz hsmmer

  3. I met Rip at the state ski dorm in Stowe, VT in 1959 when he was working as a “ski bum” to keep his ski life cooking. I had skied at Stowe before and knew the trails. We talked enthusiastically about the place and we sized each other up as capable skiers, so we agreed to ski together with another friend of mine the next day. Got to the top and as my buddy and I were adjusting our goggles and gloves Rip took off. We didn’t see him again till dinner back at the dorm. He wondered where we were. Well, later that year at a race he and I were in that he was a much higher-ranked skier than me and I got to see him for the first time. He was fast and aggressive. After the race, I was near him some distance uphill from the lodge at the bottom where many folks were enjoying lunch on picnic tables on the shoveled-off patio on the uphill side of the lodge. I heard him say “Let’s do it.” to a couple of his buddies and they shot straight for one side of the berm around the patio, made a sweeping arch, hit the berm, and one after another they went airborne over everyone and landed on the other side of the patio on a flat landing. Uphill, I was slackjawed at what I just saw. Those on the patio were likely slackjawed as well. Then Rip went off to ski for Denver University and eventually the US Olympic team and develop his career in the ski industry. RIP Rip

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