FIS Open Tech series at Snow King
FIS athletes traveled to Jackson Hole for an Open Tech series at Snow King; over the course of four days, skiers competed in two slalom and two giant slalom races. SVSEF athletes walked away from the event with multiple podiums and winning runs; a good sign of things to come this season. Notably, Jack Smith claimed victory in both of the men’s giant slalom races (December 17 and 18). Lily Fitzgerald also skied onto the podium in the women’s giant slalom on December 17, finishing third behind Isabel Grondin and Zazie Huml. Bridger Harrison and Bennett Synder each had winning runs, in the giant slalom and slalom, respectively. Sage Curtis, a first year who made the flip this year from the USSA team, had a significant result in the first giant slalom, finishing 23rd overall. Alison Rathfon broke the top 10 twice (seventh in December 15th slalom, eighth in December 17th giant slalom). In an extraordinary instance of familial coordination, brothers Bennett and Will (alum) Snyder tied for seventh in the men’s opening slalom on December 15. Will also scored a top result in the slalom on December 16, taking bronze. “It was a good weekend; our skiers approached their races with good attitudes, despite tough conditions,” said SVSEF Alpine Program Director Will Brandenburg. “There was better skiing out there than results, and we had really good results – it shaped up to be a nice series.”
Alum Chase Josey found the podium a second weekend in a row, this time in the Dew Tour modified superpipe at Breckenridge on Saturday, December 15. In the new Dew Tour event, which included slopestyle jumps at the beginning and end of the run, Josey finished second in the event, behind Australian Scotty James (who also won last week’s Grand Prix event at Copper). The alum scored 88.33 on his second run, securing his silver medal at the event.
SVSEF, along with Galena Lodge and BCRD, hosted its annual Winterstart race at Galena to kick off the local competition season. The event drew 80 participants, most of whom were SVSEF athletes. Leading the charge in the four-lap (roughly 8km) category was Gold Team skier Peter Holmes, who finished in 19:07. Behind him were Adam Witkowski (20:05) and Scott Schultz (20:31) to round out the podium. The three-lap category was dominated by SVSEF skiers, as well; Bjorn Halvorsen won with a time of 16:03, followed by Anja Grover in 17:49 and Sammy Smith one second behind Anja in third. In the group that completed two laps, Prep Team skier Holden Archie topped the field, finishing in 12:33. Berkeley Canfield was second in 12:43, and Teddy Hobbs third in 14:10. Sven Halvorsen, McCallen Campbell and Zach Quesnel went one-two-three on the single lap, and Levi Reuner, Duncan Freyberger and Anne O’Sullivan did the same in the mini loop category. SVSEF athletes head to Bozeman this weekend for their first JNQ of the season. Gold, PG and Comp athletes are also gearing up for U.S. Nationals, which will be held at Craftsbury, Vermont, in early January. Kevin Bolger, who narrowly missed qualifying for heats in the final sprint race of Period 1 on the World Cup circuit in Davos, Switzerland, has a break from racing before Period 2 picks up in Toblach, Italy.