Brothers sweep moguls selections podium
Special to the Vail Daily
With a World Cup start on the line, the North American moguls season got underway this week with three days of competition at U.S. Selections in Winter Park. The event hosted a pair of mogul competitions (singles) and one dual mogul competition. Ski & Snowboard Club Vail athletes made big statements in the season’s first event with the Andringa brothers, Cassie and Jessie, sweeping the top spot on the men’s podium all three days.
Casey Andringa won the first two days of mogul competition, punching his ticket to the FIS Freestyle World Cup in Deer Valley later this season. He won in dominant fashion, leading every single run of the contest.
Based on other athletes who had already prequalified for the World Cup in Deer Valley, Casey Andringa needed to pull off wins in both (single) mogul competitions, a tall order, but he was highly motivated.
“It was a pretty loaded field this year with several U.S. Ski Team guys competing,” said SSCV Mogul Program Director John Dowling. “There were several U.S. Team guys and they were all gunning for wins.”
Casey Andringa has been on the cusp of making the national team for the past several years. Some would say he’s been snubbed by national association, which has favored developing less accomplished, younger athletes. He’s 22.
With his results this week, Casey Andringa will have a chance to prove himself for the first time at the World Cup level.
“(USSA) might look at him for starts for other World Cup events,” said Dowling. “They might look at him for Mont Tremblant. They might look at him for Calgary. He might have a couple opportunities coming up.”
Walczyk’s second place
U.S. Ski Team member and SSCV alum Dylan Walczyk picked up a second-place result behind Casey Andringa.
“Dylan had already earned a start at Deer Valley, but he’s trying to get his performance ready,” Dowling said. “He doesn’t want to come into World Cup with no starts behind him. This was his best chance to get an early start and see how he’s doing.”
The women’s field was also really thick, Dowling said. Heidi Kloser was SSCV’s top finisher with a third- and fourth-place result. While her coaches are happy with the way she skied, Kloser will come up short of qualifying for the World Cup in Deer Valley and thus will not get another shot at the Olympics this season.
In the dual mogul event on Thursday, SSCV’s Jessie Andringa, inspired by his older brother’s performance, made a statement of his own by snagging the top spot on the podium.
Unfortunately, there aren’t any World Cup implications for this dual mogul contest, it’s a nice way to get his season going, said Dowling.
“With his brother winning the first two events, I think he was a little more wound that his brother was able to seal the deal,” Dowling said. “He stepped up and came back with the win, and I think that’s really going to boost his confidence as we go forward.”
Other notable SSCV performances include Emily Szabo in fifth and 12th, Gabbi Fisher in 16th and 10th, John Leseur in 18th and 24th, Tegan Large in 19th, and Teddy Kust in 25th and 21st.
In a titanic battle of 35-year-old local superstars, John Gaston outdueled Simi Hamilton on Saturday to win the fourth iteration of the Snowmass 50 mountain bike race.
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