2014 Town Race Series opens Saturday with GS
The Aspen Times
Aspen’s alpine ski racers will ski into a bit of history again this season in the Aspen Times Town Race Series.
The alpine race series is considered the longest running town race league in the United States.
And Chapter 2014 will begin with a giant slalom Saturday at Aspen Highlands for both the Recreational and Advanced divisions.
“We’re also offering a family class which will challenge parents and their children to spend time in gates together,” said longtime race series director Scott Nichols.
“Two of our three slaloms and three giant slalom races will be held on the skier’s right on Golden Horn and Thunderbowl,” Nichols said. “And we will host the March 1 slalom on North American … on Aspen Mountain.”
Nichols said the Aspen Times Town Race Series this year will consist of three giant slalom events and three slalom competitions over the next two months.
“The race series will be scored both on an individual and a team basis,” he said.
Individual entry fees for the series are $30 per race for adults and $20 for juniors or $150 for the six-race series for adults ($100 for juniors).
Team entry fees for the season are $750 per team of six.
“Racers of all ages are welcome and can race as individuals or form a team,” Nichols said.
Nichols said there also will be a speed series this winter with the John Meyer Memorial Super-G/Town Downhill on Feb. 21-23 and the BOOTech Super Combined (super-G and slalom) on March 22.
Separate fees will be charged for the speed events.
Nichols said the Recreational League is for snowboarders, telemarkers, beginning-level ski racers and families. Competitors will include children, women, men and visiting NASTAR racers, among others.
Scoring is based on the best of two runs and the three single fastest times for the team results.
Racing in the Recreational Division will start at 10:30 a.m. on race days — including Saturday’s season-opening giant slalom.
The race order in the division will be children, women, men, snowboard and telemark.
The Advanced Division will race after the recreational racers.
“The Advanced League is designed for the more experienced ski racer,” Nichols said, adding that participants include former national team skiers, collegiate racers, masters racers and experienced town series skiers.
Scoring is based on combined time for two consecutive runs.
Race day registration Saturday will run from 8 to 9:30 am. at the Highlands Ale House.
Race order for Advanced League in giant slalom will be: disabled, women, men 60-plus, men 50-plus,men 40-plus, men’s B, men’s A, young adults.
The second run will be reversed in each classification.
The race schedule for the season:
Jan. 18 — giant slalom
Jan. 25 — slalom
Feb. 1 — giant slalom
March 1 — slalom (North American, Aspen Mountain)
March 8 — giant slalom (long course)
March 15 — slalom
Racers who are signed up for the season may register for the individual races by phone or email.
For more, call the race information line at 970-544-3029.
Nichols, Robin Farley and the Aspen Highlands Race Department also will host the Rocky Mountain Masters super-G and downhill Feb. 15-17 on Racer’s Edge at Tiehack.
Fully aware he was in the midst of the mountain bike race of his life, Aspen’s John Gaston said he “tried to not think too far ahead” to prevent the magnitude of the moment from getting to him. He eventually finished runner-up in the iconic race.
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