Aspen’s ski, snowboard racers stay busy
It’s been a busy early season for the Aspen Valley Ski/Snowboard Club teams, with competitions taking the area athletes to places as far away as Whistler, Canada, and Mammoth Mountain, Calif., and to such nearby venues as Breckenridge and Snowmass.
The AVSC Nordic Team competed in its first two Rocky Mountain Division preseason races last weekend.
Friday’s 1K sprint event was new to Rocky Mountain Division athletes, as racers from seven divisional programs went head-to-head in three elimination-format races.
At the end of the day, Nathan Waldron placed fourth in the J1/OJ class behind the winner, Mark Iverson of Steamboat. Jenny Hamilton took eighth as the youngest female competitor in the OJ/J1/J2 sprints.
The AVSC nordic team dominated the J3/J4 sprints with Simi Hamilton placing first, Brandon Cooper third, Will Otte fourth and Tyler Baker sixth in the final heat of eight racers. Ashley Morse placed 6th in the J3/J4 girls event.
AVSC nordic skiers also had strong showings at the 28th Annual Silver Boom Citizens Cross-Country Race held Saturday. Steamboat’s Mark Iverson and Dan Keenan raced to a photo finish in the 10K Classic event, with Iverson edging out Keenan with a time of 24:52.
Aspen’s Travis Mohrman placed fourth in the OJ/J1 boys class, followed by Mike Otte in ninth, Conor Flynn in 10th and R.C. Walker, who finished 11th. Nathan Waldron placed second in the OJ boys class.
Laura Hatanaka finished first in the J4 girls class while her brother, John Hatanaka, brought home the bronze in the J3 boys 3K event.
The AVSC Nordic team will travel to Summit County for the first Junior Olympic qualifying events Jan. 7th and 8th.
AVSC Snowboard Team
Members of AVSC’s snowboard program rode their way to some top finishes at the recent USASA Aspen Snowboard Series Boardercross on Dec. 11, posting ten age-group wins in the team’s strong showing.
Jordan Karlinski took top honors in the 10-11 girls category. Nina Clark was second in 12-13 girls. Laura Hadar was the top finisher in 14-15 girls, and Molly Purnell edged out teammate Hillary Klug for first place as Team AVSC took the top two spots in 16-17 girls.
Among the boys, Cory Stasinos was first in the 8-9 age group. Alexander Owen took second. Wyatt Stasinos, Teddy Karlinski and Cleve Johnson finished one-two-three in 10-11 boys. Dillon Morehead was fifth.
Luke Baker led the way in 12-13 boys with a first-place finish. Hunter Shaw was third, Michael Emerson fifth. Will Laemmel and Alex Smalling tied for seventh. Nelson Harvey was tops in the 14-15 boys category, ahead of David Rodman (fourth), Sam Horwitz and Trevor Ferrer, who tied for fifth, and Bradley Cummins, who tied for seventh.
Jason Smith was first in 16-17 boys. Chris Patterson finished in fourth. Justin Nemec took first place in 23-29 men’s, and Fred Wilson won in 40-49 men’s.
In the team event, Jason Troth, Christian Robertson, Lucas Demlow and Jason Pogloff rode to the top spot in the expert class. Second place was a tie between the team of Luke Akic, David Palmer, Jere Long and Bill Keenan, and the one comprised of Lorn Brinton, Dave Dowd, Katrina Olson and Suzanne Gouda. Third place went to Thomas Rodriguez, John Norman, Dani Margaride and Dave Griswald.
In the recreation class Wallace Westfeldt, Dusty Stutsman, Chase Lacroix and Moss Schermerhorn were first, followed by Buster Bonna, Cisco Thorp, Michael Gorman and Tyler Williams in second.
The youth class winners were Kyle Logan, Wyatt Stasinos, Ben Logan and Mitchel Reed. Jordan Karlinski, Zack Ferrara, Teddy Karlinski and Trevor Triano were second, with Matt Boughton, Woody Boughton, Roger Soave and Chris Donadi taking third.
Other AVSC action
At the World Cup Boardercross in Whistler, British Columbia, AVSC’s Cooper Hall picked up a 44th-place finish against some of the best riders in the world.
Two AVSC boarders took part in a U.S. Snowboard Grand Prix event at Mammoth Mountain, Calif., and had strong finishes in the super-G. Lera Nichols finished 21st and Michael Hurst was 45th.
Also at Mamoth Mountain, in an American Snowboard Tour quarterpipe competition, Chris Patterson of Team AVSC was 32nd, just ahead of teammate Jason Smith in the 33rd spot.
At that same event, in the parallel giant slalom, Lera Nichols finished 15th, Christian Mosiman was 25th, Michael Hurst 34th, Cooper Hall 36th, Jason Smith 40th and Tom Kuepper was 46th.
On the skiing end of things, the AVSC freestyle team is off to its best season to date after a stellar performance at the Breckenridge Men’s Open moguls competition on Dec. 19.
Steele Spence was first in the J2 division (15-16 years old) for the second time this season and fifth overall. Travis Reed increased the difficulty of his jumps by performing two 360s, moving up to second place in the J2 division and seventh overall.
Dusty Spence and Gus Ukraine skied fast and clean, landing them in sixth and seventh place in the J2s and 18th and 19th overall, respectively. Ryan Doremus started in his first open competition and skied to a solid second place in the J3 division (13-14 years old) and 41st overall.
The AVSC freestyle team now has its sights set on the first junior competition in Winter Park, on Dec. 28.
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Aspen Chamber Resort Association and Snowmass Tourism will play host to a job fair from 3-7 p.m. June 2 at at Viewline Snowmass Conference Center, 100 Elbert Lane, Snowmass Village.