Johnny Hagenbuch, Ben Ogden, Luke Jager and Gus Schumacher, photo courtesy U.S. Ski & Snowboard
Comp/Gold, U23/Junior World Championships, Lahti
The biggest news of the week from U23 and Junior World Championships racing in Finland involved SVSEF’s own Johnny Hagenbuch, who, with teammates Ben Ogden, Luke Jager and Gus Schumacher, won the men’s U20 4x5km relay event on January 26. This was a historic accomplishment; it was the first time the U.S. has won the relay at World Junior Champs. The relay was mixed, with two classic legs followed by two skate; Johnny skied the third leg. The team completed the race in 45:34.7, beating Russia by 3.8 seconds. Johnny also had a great individual effort two days before, skiing to 17th in the men’s 30km classic mass start.
Also racing for the U.S. in the relay was Sydney Palmer-Leger, who also skied the third skate leg in the 4x3.3km competition. Sydney’s team just missed the podium, finishing 40.5 seconds behind Norway’s winning team. She also skied a solid race four days prior, coming in 20th in the 5km skate. Teammate Sophia Mazzoni skied the women’s 15km classic mass start on 1/24, finishing 48th.
Peter Holmes represented SVSEF and the U.S. for U23s. Following his 27th place finish in the 1.6km classic sprint, he was 48th in the 15km skate on 1/23 and 33rd in the 30km classic mass start on 1/25.
Gold Team, SuperTour, Lake Placid
The Gold Team and PG athlete Scott Schulz continued racing on the SuperTour circuit, traveling to the East Coast for three races at Lake Placid: a distance skate, classic sprint and classic mass start. In the women’s 5km skate, Katie Feldman finished in the top 10 in ninth. Cate Brams was 23rd and Maddie Morgan 29th. Adam Luban was 13th in the men’s 10km race, and PG Scott Schulz was 17th. All three SVSEF women made heats in the classic sprint the next day; Katie Feldman and Maddie Morgan both made it into semifinals, where Katie finished fifth in her heat and Maddie sixth. Adam Luban and Scott Schulz also made heats for men, but were knocked out in quarterfinals. The final day of racing was a 10/15km mass start classic. Katie skied a strong race, finishing eighth in the field of 84 racers. Cate also had a good race; she finished 13th overall. Maddie Morgan was 25th. In the men’s 15km, Adam was 13th and Scott 16th.
Max Durtschi, IBU World Cup, Antholz
SVSEF alum Max Durtschi continued racing on the IBU World Cup circuit for biathlon. He finished 62nd in the 10km sprint in Antholz, Italy, on January 25th; he was the third American finisher.
Sydney Palmer-Leger and Sophia Mazzoni in Finland, photo courtesy Sophia Mazzoni
SVSEF athletes had an opportunity to compete on their home turf at the Sun Valley Freestyle Spectacular. Sun Valley hosted a great event on Roundhouse slope, with two moguls events and one duals. Highlights from the weekend included Sammy Smith taking the win in all three events for women, Luke Rizzo skiing to second in the second moguls event, and Rainey Wilson finishing sixth for women on day one. Thanks to all the volunteers and staff who made it happen!
Nick Rubenstein, photo by Hillary Maybery
The team at Snowbasin
Snowboard Team, USASA Slopestyle, Snowbasin
By Andy Gilbert
The Snowboard Team made its first road trip of the year to compete in the USASA Big Mtn. West Series slopestyle at “Sun Valley South” – Snowbasin Resort.
The team traveled 10 riders to take part in the event. Standouts included Jack Verhaeghe in the Breaker Boys 12-13 group, throwing a Half Cab into a smooth frontside 360 and using the more difficult rail feature to end up in 2nd place. Channing Curci also used the bigger jump line on the course in the Youth Women group 14-15. A nice method air and good style also put her in 2nd place, followed by Maddie Hothem in 3rd with a nice rail section on her runs.
Chase Josey Fourth at Aspen X Games
Alum Chase Josey competed in the men’s superpipe event at the Aspen X Games, following a hip strain at the Laax Open in Switzerland. Despite this, Chase finished fourth overall, behind Scotty James, Yuto Totsuka and Danny Davis. He scored a 82.66 on his third and best run. Chase next competes at the 2019 World Championships in Park City.
Freeski Progression, USASA events, Snowbasin
By Gui Mattheis-Brown
The SVSEF Freeski Progression Team traveled to Snowbasin, UT, this weekend to compete in two USASA events; slopestyle and rail jam. On Saturday, eight of our athletes took to the rails and jumps to showcase their ability. In the Grommet Boys division (8-9 years old), we had Walker Woodring take the gold medal with a very solid run, and Barrett Beyer right behind him in second with a strong showing as well. Anton Holter placed first out of 12 athletes in the Breaker Boys division (12-13 years old), with George Corkery narrowly missing out on the podium. Zeppelin Pilaro came in 3rd place in a very competitive group (10-11 years old).
Sunday’s competition produced some more podiums for the Freeski Progression Team, the sun was shining as the athletes took to the rail jam course. Barrett took home the gold in the 9 and under age group, while Zeppelin ended up on top of the podium as well in the 10-13 age group.
Summit County Colorado Camp
Freeski athletes spent a week in Colorado, taking time to focus on skills and technique in the halfpipe and terrain parks. See the edit from the week here:
Anton Holter in first for Breaker Boys
Big Mountain athletes took to Jackson Hole and Snowbird for a second consecutive weekend of competition, with 22 athletes in total on the road. It was a big weekend for the team, with success across the board: at Snowbird, SVSEF had six males in the top 10, all four females who competed on Sunday broke the top eight, Maile Dorland took home first place for her age group both days, Fletcher Stumph earned second on day one and Toby Rafford skied to third on day two. At Jackson, Brian Heekin finished third in the 15-18 age group, and the two other athletes from the SVSEF contingent gained a lot of valuable experience from the competition.
IMD, U14 Speed Camp, Grand Targhee
15 athletes traveled to Grand Targhee to participate in the U14 Speed Camp, aimed at developing and growing skills for Intermountain athletes. Four SVSEF athletes were awarded Most Improved throughout the camp: Drew Kogelman, Faith Cooke, Sacha Stern-Pre and Bridgette Normand made significant strides. Lowie Watkins also received an award for most Intermountain Division Team Spirit.
Mini World Cup
The Mini World Cup raced on Otto’s on Sunday; on a day with great weather and great conditions, there was a lot of good energy and effort from the athletes.