AVSC riders score over weekend
The Aspen Valley Ski/Snowboard Club hosted two USASA Aspen Snowboard Series events over the weekend.
On Saturday at Snowmass, competitors took their shot at the half-pipe. Nina Clark took top honors in the 14- to 15-year-old girls category, while Erin Simmons, who’s competing in the X Games this weekend, won the women’s open division.
Among the boys, Cory Stasinos, Eric Angus, Will Laemmel, Kyle Logan, Chris Patterson and Taichi Hasegawa won their age categories. Jason Smith edged out Christian Mosiman to take top honors in the men’s open division.
On Sunday, riders moved to Buttermilk for a slope style event. Nina Clark again led the way among the girls, with Stasinos, Logan, and Patterson repeating victories among the boys. Ben Logan and Wyatt Stasinos took cues from their brothers and scored victories among the boys, while Ryan Lougee took first place in the men’s open competition.
AVSC Nordic racers took home five victories in an RMD skate race held at Purgatory January 27. Laura Hatanaka and Morgan Boyles won the J4 women’s and men’s events, respectively.
Simi Hamilton took the gold in the J3 boys and led four of his teammates to top-ten finishes, including a third by Brandon Cooper.
Jenny Hamilton won the J2 women’s race; Michael Otte took first in the J1 boys.
“It was a dominating performance,” said Toby Morse, AVSC executive director.
On the previous day, Laura Hatanaka, Simi Hamilton, and Jenny Hamilton each scored victories in a classic race.
Kristen Walla and Jackson Horn each took home victories in a Rocky Mountain Division Devo Moguls competition at Vail.
Walla bumped to the gold in the women’s J3 category, while Horn scored his victory in the men’s J4 event. Horn’s performance earned him a fourth overall, and he was the only J4 competitor (12 and under) to finish in the top-10 overall.
The Freestyle team will now turn its attention to a RMD Open Moguls competition to be held this Saturday and Sunday on Government Trail, at Buttermilk.
Gillian Hearn scored two podium finishes over the weekend at a Junior Olympic qualifier at Breckenridge, virtually assuring her a spot in the Junior Olympics in March. Hearn skied into third place in both giant slalom races against 50 other top Junior Olympic hopefuls from around the state.
On the boys side, McCabe Mallin skied to an eighth in the Super G and tenth in the second giant slalom. Lange Adams and Packy Westfeldt also earned top-10 finishes in the second giant slalom.
AVSC age-class coach Pat Callahan said that the boys are in “good shape” for their next qualifier, to be held in two weeks at Steamboat.
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Had Hailey Swirbul decided against going to Europe, she would not have finished with a career-best result in Friday’s World Cup opener. Yes, there was a time, and not long ago, when the U.S. ski team member and Roaring Fork Valley native questioned her desire to put on a race bib.