U16’s join U18/21's FIS group to race together at Panorama - Jan 9-12, 2020
In a unique ski racing format for ski racers in BC, U16 racers and U18/U21 (FIS) level racers competed together on the same hill with the same courses. The FIS racers skied first for their own race event, and then the U16 racers raced in the same course for their event. Having tracks already laid down by the older athletes seemed to raise the bar and get them racing a better line through the gates.
The Giant Slalom races were held on ‘Old Timer’, a pretty friendly track with grippy snow and nice rolling terrain. The slalom races were on ‘Hay Fever’, a much more challenging slope which was created for a World Cup SL race in 2007. Hay Fever starts with a very steep pitch with about 25 icy turns, followed by another 40 or so turns on mellower terrain before the finish.
“I’m not sure racing on such a steep FIS SL hill was the best for the U16’s, especially our first race of the year.” said Milan Novak who took a gold and bronze in GS, “The GS hill could have been a bit more challenging but it was a long GS and really nice snow.”
“I was a little concerned with how things might hold up racing after the FIS athletes, but as soon as I took my first run I was realized, this is great!” commented Sara Stiel, winner of all four U16 ladies races, “I was able to see how my times held up against the older athletes and watched them racing to get a better sense of what I will need to do to be competitive when I move up to FIS level racing next season. It was a great race series.”
Conrad Pridy, lead coach for the WMSC FIS program commented “Great for the U18/U21 athletes to get a sneak peak at their future competition within BC. Any opportunity for the older athletes to be role models is a valuable one, and a race series like this builds a strong foundation for the future of racing in BC. We all learn a lot about how to race with this kind of exposure.”
Some quotes from our FIS racers:
“It was awesome being back with the team in a race environment! The races went pretty well, and it was fun to ski alongside the U16’s.”
— Julia Ross, U21, 3rd Place in GS competing as an out-of-town “alumni” WMSC athlete in town from her current role at The University of Maine as a Black Bear field hockey team athlete.
“This past race series was a pretty small race, but I found it to be a great learning experience. The smaller field made it feel like I really had a chance to put down a competitive run, and that encouraged me to ski some of the best races I’ve ever had. Knowing what you need to do before your race run makes everything so much easier; all that’s left is to execute your plan. Ski racing is as simple as that!”
— Lukas Forssander, U18 Racer and no longer a dark horse in GS according to his coaches!
The site for the 2022 FIS Junior World Championships, this race was great exposure for the racers born in 2001 or younger to get as much time and experience on the Pano race runs.
Day 1 GS
1st Sara Steil (WMSC), 2nd Talyn Lorimer (Sun Peaks), 3rd Jamie Robinson(Vernon)
1st Dylan Stevens (Grouse), 2rd Sam Fuller (WMSC), 3rd Milan Novak (WMSC)
Day 2 GS
1st Sara Steil (WMSC), 2nd Jamie Robinson (Vernon), 3rd Sienna Blaser (Apex)
1st Milan Novak (WMSC), 2nd Sam Fuller (WMSC), 3rd Felix Shorter (WMSC)
Day 3 SL
1st Sara Steil (WMSC), 2nd Megan Doiron (WMSC),3rd Talyn Lorimer (Sun Peaks)
1st Dylan Stevens (Grouse), 2nd Felix Shorter (WMSC), 3rd Sam Fuller (WMSC)
Day 4 SL
1st Sara Steil (WMSC), 2nd Jamie Robinson (Vernon), 3rd ERin Husken (WMSC)
1st Sam Fuller (WMSC), 2nd Sasha Gilbert (WMSC), Kaleb Barnum (Fernie)
Day 1 GS
1st – Makenna Lebsack (Pano) 1st – Sarah Shephard (Pano) 3rd – Anya Molesky (BAR)
4th – Julia Ross (Top WMSC)
1st – Gavin Donald (ABST) 2nd– Tait Jordan (BCST) 3rd – Gerrit Van Soest (BCST) 4th – Ryuji Gaman (Top WMSC)
Day 2 GS
1st – Makenna Lebsack (Pano) 2nd – Sarah Shephard (Pano) 3rd – Julia Ross (WMSC)
1st – Tait Jordan (BCST) 2nd – Gerrit Van Soest (BCST) 3rd – Ryuji Gaman (WMSC)
Day 3 SL
1st – Makenna Lebsack (Pano) 2nd – Anya Molesky (BAR), 3rd – Anna Hawkins (Pano)
5th – Alyssa Emery (Top WMSC)
1st – Nathan Romanin (BCST) 2nd – Tait Jordan (BCST) 3rd – Gavin Donald (ABST)
9th – Kosuke Akita (Top WMSC)
Day 4 SL
1st – Makenna Lebsack (Pano) 2nd – Anya Molesky (BAR) 3rd – Sarah Shephard (Pano)
5th – Julia Ross (Top WMSC)
1st – Nathan Romanin (BCST) 2nd – Tait Jordan (BCST) 3rd – Gerrit Van Soest (BCST) 7th – Ryuji Gaman (Top WMSC)