Malm and Kim nominated for Winter Youth Olympic Team
On Jan. 6, twelve young Americans, including two Mammoth athletes, were nominated to compete in the 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway from Feb. 12-21. Locals Russell Malm and Chloe Kim plan to compete in the freeskiing skicross and snowboard halpipe respectively.
Seventeen-year-old Malm grew up racing alpine on the Mammoth Mountain Ski Team, but switched to skicross five years ago. He is the 2014 men’s age 13-15 skicross national champion, competed at the FIS Junior World Championships last year and is a regular on the NorAm tour. Malm currently attends Carrabassett Valley Academy.
With a gold-medal win at the 2015 X Games, fifteen-year-old U.S. Snowboarding pro team athlete Kim is the hottest thing in snowboarding. She recently scored a second-place finish at the Dew Tour Breckenridge. Kim was a member of the Mammoth Mountain Snowboard Team until being named to the U.S. Snowboarding Team.
Modeled after the Olympic Games, the Youth Olympic Games debuted its winter event in 2012 at Innsbruck, Austria. Held every four years, the Winter Youth Olympic Games will feature over 1,100 athletes, aged 15 to 18, from around the world. Freeskiing events will include halfpipe, slopestyle and skicross. Snowboarding events will include halfpipe, slopestyle and snowboardcross.
Huskies dominate first races of the season
Friday, January 8 was the opening of the 2016 CNISSF Ski and Snowboard season. Mammoth High School athletes competed against racers from Bishop Union High School and Rim of the World in two giant slalom races. Last March Mammoth High School skiers won the 2015 CNISSF Championships Combined Ski Team title and combined with the snowboarders the team was third overall in the state.
In the first race on Friday, the MHS women dominated the race, taking 10 of the top 12 positions with Mallory Podosin, first; Cary Walker, second; Melanie Moyer, third; Lynn Regelbrugge, fourth; Audrey Sandiven, fifth; Kimmy O’Connell, sixth; Tori Patrie, seventh; Anya Feeney, eighth; Olivia Cattarossi, 10th; and Camden DeAngelis, 12th.
Of the men, Grayson Dozier took first; Hayden Mannetter, second, Mason Forsythe, third; Otto Gubser, fifth and Tristin Perpall in ninth.
On the snowboard side, Husky racer and State CNISSF Women’s GS Champion Fleur Connolly was first; Jewell Scholl, second; Maya Tubbs, sixth and Janell Weinert, seventh. Devin Tubbs, who was 6-0 last year before suffering an injury, showed that he is back to his true form. Tubbs won both runs with a combined time almost two seconds ahead of second place finisher, Bishop’s Carson Reid. Following Reid were three more Husky boarders, Emmett Hugelman, Tyler Searles and Jake Schroder in third, fourth and fifth respectively.
The afternoon races’ women’s highlights were Podosin, Walker and Moyer, again finishing one, two, and three. O’Connell moved up to take fourth. In the men’s race, Dozier repeated his first place finish, while Cody Jayne, who missed the first race due to school, came in second. Mannetter was third, Forsythe fourth, Gubser sixth. Coming in 11th for the Huskies was Zane Peters, who had never been in a race before.
On the snowboard side, as Connolly didn’t compete in the afternoon. This gave Scholl the opportunity to take first, Tubbs moved up to take fourth and Weinert came in sixth. Tubbs, Hugelman and Searles repeated their same finishes (1, 3 and 4) while Sam Hein was sixth and Schroder eighth.
U10/12s at Kangaroo Classic
While the U16s were racing at Squaw Valley, Mammoth U10/12 racers spent Jan. 9-10 competing in the Kangaroo Classic a U10/12 North Series Race at Squaw’s sister resort, Alpine Meadows. The U10/12s competed in a parallel format slalom and giant slalom not unlike the Kittredge Cup held at Mammoth at the end of December.
On Saturday the top MMSST U10 girl, U10 boy, U12 girl and U12 boy all had come out of the Kittredge Cup winning their divisions.
In the dual GS, Mammoth’s Piper Wilkison sat in 13th place after the first run, but she came back to win the second run, and move up to take second place overall behind Squaw Valley’s Elsa Svedenhein. Sierra Wight was eighth and Regan Clute, who was second in the KC, was 12th. In the U12 girls Bryn Urdi in 13th, was the sole Mammoth skier the finish on the front page. Urdi was also a KC winner.
The U10 boys race saw KC winner Gregory Gazarian finish as the top Mammoth skier. Gazarian finished his first run sitting in second place, but he dropped down to take fourth overall after completing his second run. Nevin Vanderhurst was the only other U10 boy to make the front page. Vanderhurst, who was second in the KC, was 13th. Parker Gumins was the fourth KC winner to be a top performer at Alpine. Gumins won the U12 boys division, after finishing seventh in his first and returning to win the second run. He was followed by Quentin LeFrancois, who won the first run, but finished in fifth overall.
Sunday, the format changed to a dual slalom. Wilkison came back to win the U10 girls race, while Wight moved up to take fourth. Madeline LeFrancois joined them on the podium in ninth. Clute just barely missed the podium, coming in .01 seconds behind Alpine’s Cassidy Cushard, who held the 15th spot. Urdi again was the only MMSST U12 girl to land a podium position, taking 10th.
The U10 boys saw Gazarian land in sixth, but in this race Vanderhurst was the top MMSST racer with his fourth place result. Cooper Hindshaw was the third MMSST U10 boy to medal, finishing in 14th. Gumins and LeFrancois again were the only two U12 boys to podium, with LeFrancois in seventh and Gumins in 13th.