Pictured: Kate Anderson in the Kittredge Fun Cup./
Results courtesy Mammoth Mountain Community Foundation
Stacey Cook “Oh-So-Close” at World Championships
Sunday, Feb.10, the USA narrowly missed the medals in the women’s downhill at the FIS Alpine Ski World Championships in Schladming, Austria. Julia Mancuso Squaw Valley, Calif.) was .15 out of the prizes in fifth with Stacey Cook (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.) sixth. In an aggressive race that saw higher speeds than training, the twisty turny Schladming S turn midway down the course took its toll on the USA as France’s Marion Rolland took the surprise gold. During a run that lasted 1:50.91 she was in the medal position the whole course until the last 18 seconds. She gave .4 seconds away in the last part and was only .2 from a medal in the end, but on Sunday it took an absolute perfect run to be on the podium. Speed Head Coach Chip White (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.) defended his girls saying, “This team is always striving for podiums right now. The girls are disappointed. I personally am very proud of them for the job they’ve done to get to this point and they still are the best downhill team in the world. All the cards didn’t fall the way we wanted them to.” As the day went on, Cook recovered enough to posted on Facebook, “Being oh-so-close to a World Champs podium kinda stings a little, but I’m still proud of the heart I put into the day, the way I skied, and 6th place finish. There was even a minuscule podium step to stand on at awards tonight!!! Leaves me hungry for bigger steps…” After having a few days to digest her 18th place in the Super Combined, her disappointment in taking sixth place in the downhill and what Cook referred to as a “super fun night time World Champs team event, where her team had a tough draw getting Sweden in the quarter finals” Cook took time to write her supporters at the Mammoth Mountain Community Foundation. “This week was an emotional roller coaster ride, as most Olympics or Worlds have been for me. I just want to do well so bad. When there is the most pressure, my reactions tends to think about the results I want rather than the process it takes to get those results. Luckily I have people around me that know me well enough to rein me in when that happens. I was really disappointed in the way I skied in the Super Combined and it took that poor performance to snap me out of a funk. I was able to change my mindset in time for the downhill to where I was having fun, charging hard, and doing my own personal best rather than worrying about medals or others. That’s when I skied my best. But, I know I’m skiing fast and I have plenty of goals through the end of the season to keep me going.” Cook will be back in Mammoth this spring to take part in the Mammoth Invitational. Now in its fifth year the Invitational is a fundraiser for Mammoth Mountain Community Foundation’s support of educational and athletic programs.
February 8, 2013_CNISSF High School Ski/Snowboard Race
Mammoth High School’s ski and snowboard teams took part in their final regularly scheduled home races on Friday, Feb. 8. The snowboard teams continued their strong showing taking the top three places in the third men’s slalom race and the top four out of five places in the fourth slalom race of the season. Fleur Connolly, MHS’s sole female snowboard team member, won both of the women’s snowboard races. When asked how she felt about her results this season, Connolly replied, “My season thus far has been going well. In the last eight races I’ve placed first, and now I’m looking forward to training for states. The skills that I will be working on are carving closer to the gates and increasing my speed. The greatest challenge is learning how to maintain speed through rutted or icy turns.” The ski team dominated the two races on Friday, taking the top nine out of 10 places overall, allowing only Stephen Stickells (Bishop, Calif.) racing for Bishop Union High School to take fourth place. Ironically, Stickells was competing against his teammates on the Mammoth Mountain Ski Team. Winner of the first race Justin Wallasch, also a member of the Mammoth Mountain Ski Team, was asked what he thought of his season so far and he responded with, “My season is going pretty well. I’m sitting in the 22nd spot out of 26 for Junior Olympics which are in Alaska this year – so I need to do well at Super G in Mammoth next weekend to qualify. For the High School Races I did really well and qualified for States in both GS and Slalom. I am also on track for Nationals in Ski Cross and have a race coming up in Mammoth for that as well. It’s really helped my skiing to work with all the different coaches like Pete Korfiatis, Jimmy Morning and James Tautkus as well as my regular coaches, Kerry, JG and Jason.” Wallasch was followed by two other dual MHS/MMST members, Kevin Wolfe in second and Ryan Foulke in third. In the second race for the men Wolfe and Wallasch switch places and Russell Malm another member of the MHS/MMST group took fourth. In the ladies ski races Elizabeth Heit had a win for race #3 and a second in race #4, with Sierra Gilfoy taking the win in race #4 and Kyra McKee the second place in race #3. The high school athletes will spend the next few weeks training for the State Championships to be held at Mount Shasta in March.Other MHS top results: Men Snowboard Race #3: 1 Cole Brosgart: 2 Kenny Schreiber; 3 Tyler Searles. Men Snowboard Race #4: 1 Cole Brosgart; 2 Devin Tubbs; 4 Tyler Searles. Ladies Ski Race #3: 1 Elizabeth Heit; 2 Kyra McKee; 3 Becca Albright. Ladies Ski Race #4: 1 Sierra Gilfoy; 2 Elizabeth Heit; 3 Chelsea Foulke
February 8, 2013_CNISSF_North Tahoe Pursuit
While the MHS ski and snowboard teams raced in Mammoth members of the Mammoth Middle School and Mammoth High School Nordic teams traveled north to take part in the North Tahoe Pursuit. The race was described by MHS’s Amanda Kirkeby, as a “fun” race that is “very exciting because it includes both classic and skating technique. The first lap of the race is a 3km Classis race, followed by a transition to skate skis then another lap around the 3 km course on skate skis. The hardest part is the transition.” Kirkeby, who took third in the event, went on the add, “It seems easy in practice, but at race pace, when your heart is pounding and your hands don’t seem to want to do what you want them to, its hard to switch your skis. On top of that, the coaches aren’t allowed to touch your bindings. I had a slower transition than I wanted, and when I left the transition area, I was in sixth place due to uncooperative bindings. However, I made up all the time I lost in the transition area on the second lap, passing three people, landing me in a podium finish. All in all, I was very happy with my third place result.” Other top results for MHS ladies were: 16 Patty Hensley and 31 Kylie La Francois. For the MHS men: Philip Oxford was 20th, Carson Bold 22nd; Jack Roten 24th; and Gemin Choi 36th. Mammoth Middle School racer Meaghan Thompson, who also took part in the North Tahoe Pursuit, commented about her race and the season on a whole, “The Mammoth Middle School team is doing really well this year, mostly because of the great coaching and wonderful facilities at Tamarack. Friday’s race at North Tahoe was challenging toward the finish with the serpentine downhill section that got rutted by the High School racers. I’m currently ranked 15th out of 105 girls in the league, and I am working on improving my technique and getting my V2 perfected. I’m hoping to continue to finish in the top 15 at the Tahoe 1k sprint this Friday, and I’d like to finish strong at Auburn for State Championships.” Other Mammoth Middle School results from the North Tahoe Pursuit: Middle School Ladies: Meaghan Thompson 15th; Sophia McKee 19th; Alexia Craven 30th. Middle School Men: Connor Kusumoto 3rd; Trace Calvin 4th; Jared Mahler 9th; Eddie Matthiessen 20th; Jacob Mahler 38th; Liam Bassler 42nd; Hayden Mannetter 44th; and Orion Ellis 83rd.
Super Junior National Qualifier at Soldier Hollow, Utah
Earlier in the month Amanda Kirkeby, along with Carson Bold, went to The Super Junior National Qualifier at Soldier Hollow, Utah. Kirkeby who thought the event was “great.” Added, “I finished 13th overall for FJ2 on Freestyle Sprint race a field of 85. I went on to the quarterfinals and just missed out on advancing to the semi-finals by one place. I was very happy with my result, as I had not made it into the heats the last year. The 5km Classic race went well too. I finished 22nd out of 87. It was a chevron-style mass start, meaning all 87 of us started at the same time. It seemed like the whole race was a game of passing people at the opportune moment, changing technique the right time, and drafting off the person in front of you.” Kirkeby who has been working on “quicker turnover in double pole starts while still applying all my strength.” She believes that the experience she gained at the Super Junior Qualifier in Utah gave her some great race experience at a high level of competition, which will help her a lot at the Junior Nationals in Fairbanks, Alaska (March 8th-17th).
For more Soldier Hollow results: http://summittiming.com/race_results/2013/soldier_hollow_super_joq/overall_sprint_results_for_soldier_hollow_super_joq_sprints_130201.pdf
February 8-9, 2013_NOR-AM_Beaver Valley, Ont.
Mammoth Ski Cross Team member, Madeline Riffel (Crowley Lake, Calif.) recently returned from competing in Beaver Valley, Ontario, Canada. Riffle writes, “This ski season I am focusing on skier cross, which is made entirely possible thanks to Mammoth Mountain. Not only have they hired a new ski cross coach, but they have also constructed a start and terrain course. With all my races this year I have notice many things that I need to work on such as my jumping, my starts, and my turns, but with the help of my coach, James Tautkus, I am continually improving. My season is going great, I’ve participated in two world cup events and I’m currently racing the NorAm circuit. I just returned from two races in Killington, Vermont and Beaver Valley, Ontario where I placed 4th, 5th, 4th, and 6th respectively. The Ontario race was challenging because of the snowstorm, but the race department did an excellent job maintaining the course. And again, I am fortunate to have the support of Mammoth Mountain and coach James.”
February 9, 2013_Kittredge Fun Cup
Saturday, Feb. 9, saw the youngest members of the Mammoth Mountain Ski Team, the Mighty Mites, race in the Kittredge Fun Cup. Since the race, which was sponsored by Kittredge Sports, was open to team members, siblings and non-team members from the Mammoth community the age range for the participants end up being from four to eight years old. The weather turned out to be warmer than anticipated and the wind didn’t arrive as forecast making the conditions perfect for the many first time racers. Enthusiasm and excitement was apparent in the group of Mighty Mites. This was partly due to the outstanding staff and the leadership of team manager Lisa Hickson, who was seen on the sidelines simultaneously directing the race while filming her athletes. Hickson reported that after the race Kate Anderson’s mom told her that her daughter proclaimed, “I have a passion for skiing.” She wasn’t the only racer who expressed her fondness for the sport, Mighty Mite six-year old Piper Wilkison exclaimed, “I love my ski coaches!! They are fun, fast and they teach me a lot.” Alternately, her teammate six year old Grant Schneider, expressed a very competitive approach to the race stating, “I’m working on making my edges go real deep in the snow and putting my knees forward on my boots. My goal for the season was to beat Cooper Hindshaw! He was my challenge that I overcame!!” Schneider accomplished his goal by beating Hindshaw by .71 in this race, setting the stage for future challenges between the two racers. Top three results from each age group: Four year old female: 1 Lyla Desario (Los Angeles, Calif.); 2 Lyra Manning (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.). Five year old female: 1 Sarah Jeffries (La Canada, Calif.); Six year old female: 1 Piper Wilkison; 2 Gretchen Gooch (Hermosa Beach, Calif.) ; 3 Madeline LeFrancois (Crowley Lake, Calif.); Six year old male:1 Grant Schneider; 2 Cooper Hindshaw (Santa Monica, Calif.); 3 Dylan Jeffries (La Canada, Calif.); Seven year old female:1 Reagan Sewell; 2 Regan Clute (Laguna Beach, Calif.) ; 3 Bella Musurlian Orange, Calif.); Seven year old male:1 Lucas Geyer; 2 Jake Westfall (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.); 3 Bodie MacMillan (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.); Eight year old male: 1 Noah Manning (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.); 2 Shaunt Aboolian. After taking first in her division, Sewell added that she’s “been practicing moguls. It’s kind of hard because I have to go on some that are high, then the next one is low.” She then added, “The race was awesome! I want to do it again.”
February 9-10, 2013_U14 Parallel Slalom_Squaw Valley
On Feb. 8, twenty-seven Mammoth U14 racers (many coming first from southern California) traveled to Squaw Valley to compete in two parallel slaloms. James Gooch (Hermosa Beach, Calif.) was the top Mammoth team racer on Saturday, Feb. 9 taking sixth place and fourth on Sunday. Gooch exclaimed that he, “Loved the dual races at Squaw!” he then added that he is, “Still working on my slalom techniques to hopefully crank out at the finals.” When asked what she thought of the weekend’s event, Eva Yguico (Sherman Oaks, Calif.) reported, “The weekend was a highlight for me and my fellow competitor, Sarah Ellis (Palos Verdes Estates, Calif.) because we finished all of our runs and medaled in the top 15 both days. This has been something I have been working on – consistently finishing runs – so it was a great accomplishment for me.” Mammoth results for Feb. 9_ Men: 6 James Gooch; 9 Erik Eisen (Simi Valley, Calif.); 12 Barrett Calvin (Crowley Lake, Calif.); Ladies: 8 Sarah Ellis; 12 Eva Yguico. Sunday results_Men: 4 Gooch; 9 Eisen; 10 Calvin; 12 Connor Staley (Thousand Oaks, Calif.); Ladies_9 Yguico; 11 Ellis. Yguico concluded, “The Parallel Slalom was slightly different because no one could tell if it was GS or slalom, so ski sizes varied tremendously. Mammoth kids took a risk by going on our GS skis, but it paid off when we took home a total of 11 medals between the girls and boys.”
February 10, 2013_Junior Village Championships #2
Head U10-12 coach Lindsay Barksdale recounted that Sunday, Feb. 10 “saw another successful JVC race. In a surprising outcome, the same 3 teams went 1, 2, 3 as the first race. Kittredge Kruisers were first, Beach Mint Bombers took 2nd and Jersey Mike’s Jammer’s were 3rd.” Charlie Regelbrugge (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.) a U12 racer took the fastest run of the day recording a time of 21.57, with Mammoth Outdoor Sports’ Brendan Torrance (Crowley Lake, Calif.) coming in 1.19 behind Regelbrugge. Regelbrugge stated, “In the second JVC race this past weekend, I tried to ski my best to help my team, John’s Pizza Works, and I was able to ski to the fastest time in the race.” The young racer, who had had an outstanding season, also talked about a change he has made at school, “I am also very lucky to be in the ILC (Independent Learning Center) because now I can focus more on, and put more effort into, skiing and still keep up with my schoolwork. So far, I have straight A’s. With the ILC the challenge that has been hardest to overcome is being at school until so late at night and yet still be at school, doing work. The teachers at the ILC help me to do my best and I would like to thank them, too.” U14 racer Melanie Moyer, who had the fastest time for the ladies in the Jr. VC race, thinks that the Far West races “are far more challenging because I am not as big and strong as the other girls. But I am doing as best as I can by focusing on my technique.” Moyer who is currently playing Helen in the local production of the “Miracle Worker” explained that, “ Juggling school, skiing and my acting endeavors has always been a challenge, but I always pull through because I love doing them all. I have had to miss a few Far West races because of my part… but it has been fun to compete in the local races anyway. Playing the role of Helen is a dream come true for me and I hope you can see it.”
Barksdale finished by saying, “Thank you again to our team sponsors and to Giovanni’s who sponsored the race and donated a small pizza voucher to every athlete.” A reminder from Barksdale, “The last race on March 24 is going to be really exciting as 10 teams battle it out to beat Kittredge by enough points to take the cup.”
February 9, 2013_OutRide Wallride
The event advertisement stated, “Considering the amazing turnout we had for the first Insta-jam, we decided there couldn’t be a better way to debut the new OutRide Wallride feature than with another one! Come out Feb. 9 for the contest whether you want to ski, ride or film. The ski/snowboard portion of the event is open to everyone, and will feature a 45 minute jam session where you’ll be rewarded with sweet mophie and Mammoth prizes as you land cool tricks, so there are tons of chances to win!” Mammoth Snowboard team’s George Scott (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.) was one of the local athletes who took part in the event. Scott felt, “The mophie Rail Jam was good fun, seemed like everyone had fun & got some new tricks. We all won some mophie accessories – so everyone left happy.” Scott, who has been working on his “switch riding & setting up for some doubles,” describes his season as, “good. Did well in the Volcom PBRJ so I’m looking forward to the final. The jumps have been great all season so I have been progressing on there a lot.” Not bad for a young man who explained that, “I hardly snowboarded growing up. 3 years ago after only 8 weeks on snow I left England, my friends and family to get the training I needed. The first 3 years I was at CVA in Maine – away from everyone. This season I left my Maine friends behind for my first season in Mammoth – I am a long way from home but THIS is the place to be.”
The European Open in Laaz Switzerland
Head Snowboard coach, Ben Wisner, who just returned from The European Open in Laaz Switzerland reported that the team “had some great results. Chloe Kim 1st place in both Halfpipe and Slopestyle in the Womens Junior Jam; Spencer Whiting made semi finals and placed 20th in Slopestyle in Open Mens Division.
(Photos: Susan Morning/Mammoth Mountain Community Foundation)