AVSC alpine skiers shine in South America
Lange Adams, Paul Britvar and Toby Lamar of the Aspen Valley Ski and Snowboard Club skied the “runs of their lives,” in one coach’s words, to claim top results at the South America Cup and the Argentine National Championships recently.The three racers traveled to South America with a group of eight AVSC skiers and two coaches to train in Chile and race in Bariloche and San Martin de los Andes, Argentina.Adams eviscerated the giant slalom course at the South American Cup. Starting in 20th position and finishing third overall, Adams bested racers from the Argentine and Chilean national teams as well as top racers from French and Italian regional teams.Adams also left his coach, former U.S. Ski Teamer Casey Puckett, in his wake.”He kicked my butt,” said Puckett, AVSC’s head ability coach. “Lange’s just gone from obscurity to being on the map in the world rankings.”Adams followed that result with a blistering run at the Argentine National Championships to secure a bronze medal for third place in giant slalom.With the outstanding results, Adams cut his FIS points in half. He is currently the fifth-ranked GS skier in the U.S. for his age; he opened the trip ranked 44th.Britvar, 16, matched Adam’s effort with a sixth in GS at the South America Cup (also besting Puckett to finish fourth overall in the first run).Starting from 27th place, he erased all doubts about his ability before an international audience.”My jaw was left on the hill,” said Puckett. “I’ve never seen him ski so well before.”Before the competitions, Britvar was ranked seventh and 30th in GS and slalom, respectively. The recent results elevated him to No. 1 in the GS rankings in the U.S. for his age, and No. 2 in slalom.Lamar’s training paid off with a second in slalom at the South America Cup after an incredibly fast second run. Lamar moved up from seventh to fourth in the U.S. standings for slalom skiers his age. According to Puckett, “This result draws him closer to his goal of a spot on the U.S. National Ski Team.”After two years of hard work it literally happened overnight. Suddenly, out of nowhere, they stepped up and proved what they can do,” said Puckett, who won the South America Cup last August. “We want to have a presence at the World Junior Championships and a strong showing at the U.S. Nationals. I think we’ve only seen the beginning of what these guys are capable of.”Said AVSC alpine director Dave Hjerleid: “It’s impressive. The whole crew is elevating itself.”
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The 2020-21 Nordic combined season was supposed to be historic. This winter was going to be the first ever with women’s Nordic combined World Cup events, the first scheduled for Dec. 3-6 in Lillehammer, Norway.