The local ski racing season is well on its way and local athletes have had top finishes in several races. Last Sunday, January 29th, DCWST hosted over 140 racers from Pennsylvania, Maryland and West Virginia ranging in age from 7 to 20. The event, sponsored by Taylor Made, was a giant slalom format with the winner posting the best combined time in two runs down Squirrel Cage. DCWST had a dominant field and took home a number of trophies. The team had a podium sweep in both the U8 girls and boys with Josie Haigh (1), Sage Eckel (2) and Sawyer Guidera (3) taking the top three spots for girls and Benjamin Goodier (1), Chace Niesslein (2) and Landon Hoffman (3) for boys. In the U10 age group, athletes Emma Easterday and Lillian Flesch took the girls silver and bronze while Eliot Eckel and Miles Diffenderfer took gold and bronze. Troy Bray took the bronze in boys U12 while Chase Desjardins took bronze in boys U14. DCWST had another podium sweep in girls U16 with Maraid Johnson (1), Ashylnn Anderson (2) and Avabella Perfetti (3), while on the boys side Brice Roche and Gavin Nolan took gold and silver. For the senior set, the U18 women’s gold and bronze went to Nicki O’Donnell and Madeline Allen while Finn Roche picked up the men’s silver.  Rounding out the field was Marcus Schmidt taking the men’s gold in the U21 category.

The previous day, January 28th, the U12 and U14 athletes traveled to 7 Springs for a U10, U12, U14 slalom race with podium finishes by DCWST athletes Troy Bray (silver U12 boys), Chase Desjardins (silver U14 boys) and Trent Bray (bronze U14 boys).

On January 22, Hidden Valley Race Club in Pennsylvania hosted 120 athletes aged 8 to 13, from three different clubs for a Skills Quest Competition. This is not your usual ski race where the first one across the finish line is the winner, rather this competition focused on the development of skills for skiing control and effective turns.  Each athlete completed four separate skills assessments that would have them one foot skiing, slide slipping, jumping over poles or linking progressively tighter radius turns on an intermediate slope. Standings were determined based on points scored for each of the four tests.  Garrett county native and Broadford Elementary student, Emma Easterday, placed at the top in the U10 Girls with teammate, Brady Guidera taking third. For the U10 Boys, Eliot Eckel took the silver, Alexandra Hester took bronze in U14 Girls and Chase Desjardins took the top spot in U14 boys with Asher Eckel in spot #4.

If you are interested in watching a race, come out to WISP on February 12th for the WGW Community Youth Cup slalom race and cheer the local athletes in their runs.