Racers from all over Colorado poured into Winter Park on Thursday and Friday for a two day Super G racing event. On top of a Surefoot race, there was also a Smartwool race.
With the Surefoot race counting towards FIS points and the Smartwool race counting for USSA points, some of these skiers had the opportunity to double dip so to speak. Since the Surefoot racers are in the FIS category, only racers that are U18 and older are eligible to compete, while the Smartwool racers are U16 and above. “Tons of man hours go into setting up a venue for racing events like these. Generally, when the course is setup there are numerous races that take place on it,” says Ski & Snowboard Club Vail (SSCV) operations manager C.B. Bechtel.
The first day of Super-G kicked off on Thursday with some great results from local SSCV athletes. The first early morning race of the day was the ladies Surefoot race with Erika McCormick from SSCV coming away with the win and Montana Marzario placing 4th. “The FIS field was really competitive and our girls performed well under the pressure. Montana had a fairly big mistake in her race today but came out of it exceptionally fast. She will undoubtedly be someone to look out for tomorrow,” says SSCV’s U16 Women’s Alpine coach Bruce Hamlin. After the Surefoot race, the Smartwool race took place with 71 female racers signed up to compete.
Overall it was an incredible day for the U16 girls at the Smartwool race. SSCV athlete Abigail Murer won the race followed by SSCV athlete Heidi Livran in second place. Murer has been racing well this season and this isn’t her first Smartwool win of the season. Just a month ago Murer won her U16 division at a Smartwool race in Copper and placed third overall amongst college level racers. Anna Martin from SSCV placed in fourth and SSCV Sasha Horn placed in fifth. Out of the top ten racers 6 were from Vail. Rachel Desroachers ended in 7th place and Camilla Trapness raced well to a 10th place finish. All of the girls were fast and enjoyed the warmer temperatures that this week is offering.
In the Men’s Surefoot competition 6 more Vail skiers had top ten finishes for the U18 and up category. Aspen Ski Club sealed the first two places in the competition. However, the McCormick family was on fire in Winter Park with Sean McCormick placing in third. McCormick skied fast in a very difficult field, maybe he was inspired by his younger sister’s win earlier in the day. Clayton Kirwood skied well and placed 4th just barely behind McCormick. Scott Cooper rounded out the top five and squeezed into 5th place by 6 one hundredths of a second. Daniel Blake had a tie for 7th place followed by Ryan Barney in 9th and Florian Szwebel in 10th.
“Everyone really took advantage of the temperature gradient and the nice conditions out here. These races are fairly important and serve as qualifiers for U18 Nationals and U16 Junior Championships,” says Hamlin. Tomorrow is another day of racing for these rising stars. For full results and to keep track of the races on Friday go to live-timing.com.