AVSC nordic team shines at Utah race
January 23, 2007
Aspen, CO ColoradoPARK CITY, Utah Aspen Valley Ski and Snowboard Club nordic skiers had strong showings at the Western Region Super Qualifier last weekend at the renowned Soldier Hollow course in Park City, Utah.The team vied for bibs for the upcoming Junior National Championships against the top junior skiers from all over the West.”It’s the largest junior race in the country,” AVSC nordic head coach John Callahan said in a team release. “Over 500 skiers racing on the same course where Junior Nationals will be held. It’s great because our team will have a bit of home field advantage.”Scott Lacy, Laura Hatanaka and Noah Hoffman all found the podium in Friday’s classic sprint race. Lacy battled some stiff competition in his J2 group to finish third in the final heat. Lacy was the top Rocky Mountain Nordic finisher, only seven seconds behind the winner. “Scott was a bit disappointed, but I thought he skied a great race,” Callahan said.Hatanaka had a personal best: third in the finals for the J1 women. “She was the top Rocky Mountain Nordic finisher, and for her to ski like that was a pleasant surprise,” Callahan said.Noah Hoffman was another surprise. “Noah’s not a sprinter. In fact, he had never made it to finals before in a sprint event,” Callahan said. “It’s just not his strong suit, but he had a great day and was in a tight finish in the semifinals. It was a dead heat with four guys, including Noah. They only took the top three for finals and he finished fourth, but one guy was penalized for changing lanes in front of him so Noah made the cut for finals.”Once Hoffman got the chance, he made the most of it. “He took advantage of the situation and went on to win. It was his best sprint ever,” Callahan said.Other AVSC skiers also had personal bests. Cornelia Carpenter had been struggling with overuse injures that prevented her from skating. She was 24th after the qualifying round in the sprints but made a move up to 14th in the quarterfinals.One of the highlights of the weekend was watching how well she skied,” Callahan said. Lindsey Wilkinson was fourth in her quarterfinals sprint heat, just missing the semifinal cut but still finishing as the sixth-best skier in the Rocky Mountain Nordic division.
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