Column: Aspen to host state high school ski championships
The Aspen times
Colorado’s best prep ski racers will be in Aspen this week.
The Colorado High School Skiing Championships will return to Aspen on Thursday and Friday unless complications related to Interstate 70 through Glenwood Canyon closure interfere.
Aspen High School will host the annual state championships for the first time since 2011, with the high school commons serving as race headquarters.
The alpine races (a giant slalom and a slalom) will be staged at the Stapleton Training Center at Aspen Highlands.
The Nordic races will be held on the cross-country trails adjacent to Aspen High School and the Aspen Valley Ski Club headquarters.
The current schedule calls for giant slalom racing for girls and boys Thursday with the first run at 9:30 a.m. and the second starting at 12:30 p.m. The same schedule is set for slalom Friday at Highlands.
In Nordic, the 5-kilometer individual-start classic race will be held at 3:30 p.m. Thursday. On Friday, the skate 5K mass-start race will be held, starting at 3:30 p.m. Qualified skiers have an opportunity to compete in both divisions, with an overall skimeister title on the line.
Aspen High School has won more state championships in skiing than in any other sport, even though the Skiers only joined CHSAA ski racing 20 years ago.
The Aspen High boys have won seven state ski titles, the last in 2014. The girls have won six state championships, the last in 2012.
Summit High School is the historically dominant ski racing school in Colorado. The Summit girls have won 21 state championships, including last year. And the Summit boys have 18 state titles to their credit, with their last championship in 2013.
Battle Mountain, the 2015 boys state champion, is climbing up, with six boys state titles. The Battle Mountain girls have won three state championships.
In boys skiing, Durango is second overall with nine state championships. But the Demons’ last state crown came in 1976; they have not competed in CHSAA skiing for more than 25 years.
Ella Johnson gave thought to the risk when she decided to close out her senior year at Glenwood Springs High School playing soccer and make a bid for another shot at the Class 4A state track meet podium finish.
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