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Racing : U14 Slalom on Exhibition at Mont Cascades. The Exhibition is definitely more challenging that Vorlage’s Lookout trail that the kids raced slalom two weeks ago.

101 : Marking Month #101 in MadPat’s SkiStreak.

Racing 101 : Outside ski, look ahead, hands forward, don’t lean back, upper body separation. Racing today on Exhibition will underlined the importance of the fundamentals.

It didn’t take long for the small parking lot next to the World Cup lodge to fill up. I managed to find one of the last spots and the police will give you good fine if you park on the side of the road. Of course there is a much bigger lot on the main side. This side where the racers and coaches wanted to be. The NCO team was training on the Competition side of skier’s right of the Exhibition/Competition trail. Mont Cascades U16s kids were getting ready for speed camp and training Super G on the twisting Hogan trail.

It was a cold -18c morning, but at race time the temperature up to -8c and overcast. The surface was carveable, but the steeps were hard pack and icy. The slalom course had about 45 gates on the 140-meter course which pretty much from the top of this side of Mont Cascades. The pitch of the trail, the course turned to ice. Kids are going to have to attack, not ski on the backseat and make sure they are standing on that outside or it going to be DNF over.

Once the race was over it started to snow pretty hard. After finishing to help for the teardown, I managed to get a few runs down Hogan. The trail hadn’t seen much traffic due to training earlier in the day during the day and was now covered with a fresh layer of snow. I didn’t feel like checking out the Gratton trail nor the other sides of Cascades. It had been a long day and this was enough for me.

Pictures courtesy of Kunstadt Sports

Emelyn


Sierra, winner by an 8-seconds margin and 16-seconds ahead of 6th place


Sam, winner for the boys was the only one faster than Sierra today

More pictures from the Cascades race on Kunstadt Sports’ Facebook page

Cascades U14 Slalom Results Ladies
1 SMITH, Sierra MARIE 49.70 45.38 1:35.08
2 LEDUC, Charlotte ASM 53.44 49.88 1:43.32
3 BELANGER, Juliette ASM 53.10 50.25 1:43.35

Cascades U14 Slalom Results Men
1 DUFF, Sam CALAB 49.25 43.88 1:33.13
2 CLARK, Tyler MARIE 50.49 45.45 1:35.94
3 KISLICH-LEMYRE, York FORTU 50.84 47.81 1:38.65

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Day’s Log

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After the bad week and last episode of rain 14-days ago, the awesome 2013-14 Winter was back on track. The Polar Vortex 2 moved in time for the Ottawa Masters to use their no skin suit rule last Wednesday. The temperature moved away from the deep into the -20s just in time for Saturday.

Saturday January 25 : Edelweiss

The Strief ski run opened for the previous weekend, but we were away racing at the neighbouring hills. Prior to the trail opening, Strief had a few big mounds of snow on it which was probably moved after the rain, then it got real cold.

Saturday morning was covered with 10cm layer of fresh snow. As usual, instead of making fresh tracks, coaches were making a fresh course down a steep Streif. I couldn’t believe the amount of snow that was blown at the entrance and in the pitch of a still closed Shotgun trail. I’m taking meters high. A few poachers defied patrollers and ducked the rope or sketched down on the edge of Strief behind the pipes.

Today was the return to awesomeness of our great winter weather with fresh snow, big flakes falling and -6c in the afternoon.

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Sunday January 26 : Edelweiss

Our Winter hasn’t been only about the snow, but also the cold spells. A freezing -29c start which would warm up to -18c later in the afternoon. Shotgun mounds of snow were roughly flatten, but I think the trail was still closed and some people were still poaching it.

It didn’t matter, it was a hero snow day on Strief. When it is this cold, snow doesn’t slide much. Hard lovely carveable cold artificial snow on the steep pitch, I could have stayed for hours if it wasn’t for my frozen hands and toes. Morgane was giving her ski lessons, not easy to ski with young kids when it is this cold.

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Tuesday January 28 evening : Edelweiss

Another 10cm feel on Ottawa on Monday with continued cold conditions, awesome skiing and -18c. Coaching on Strief again, but with the U10s and U12s for a training evening under the lights. For the three outings in four day, I still skied exclusively on Streif.

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Wednesday January 29 evening : Fortune – Back on course (Racing)

So Winter was back on course…now it was time for me to get back on course. Back to ski racing. I’m taking babysteps in Winter 2014 in my return to Ottawa Masters ski racing after a hiatus due to health issues. I’m still not over them and I’ve been skipped two of the first three races struggling with my anxiety. Wednesday was my first slalom race since March 2011. A slalom on Slalom was the order of the evening. I hesitated before leaving the house, however I managed to overcome my demons for this night. The stress level was slightly better than my first race back two Wednesdays ago, but the results were again far from my normal handicap. Skiing at 88%, second last in the Beer Points again. Although the conditions were nice, the course was down to the blue ice layer from the rain event. The skis weren’t tuned, but that wasn’t important, the goal was showing up for the race.

Next race is already tomorrow: a GS at Edelweiss.

Tonight’s Results and Beer Points

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Wakefield to Chelsea;
Vorlage to Camp Fortune;
Lookout to Canadian and Chute;
Slalom to GS.
Only 20 kilometers apart, but different difficulties.

The first weekend of racing in the Outaouais Zone was here.

I accompanied the small team of Edelweiss Ski Team U14 to their first race. This was also my first race as a coach.

Saturday : Slalom on Lookout at Vorlage – Looking for snow

A quick 30 minutes up Autoroute 5 which will soon connect to directly to Vorlage. My anxiety was kicking in, but not as bad as my first race 7km away at Edelweiss last Wednesday. The word at the coaches meeting was that the snow was thin on Lookout so the kids couldn’t inspect the course by side-slipping. They were allowed to slide in and out to inspect the line. The course was also set according to where there was enough snow depth, which was a bit challenging for the course setters: you could see that they hit the ground at many places.

The thaw and rain had closed the run; the snow crew managed to make enough snow to open it for race day. There was a huge frozen water puddle at the side of the finish line. Not as bad as the parking lot which could have been turned into a huge skating rink. I almost killed myself walking with my ski boots to get my skis. As I rode the old double chair, they were still a few old style snow guns blowing on the old T-bar line. Vorlage is a great family and beginner ski area, probably one of the two best on the Ottawa region with Pakenham located West of Ottawa on the Ontario side of the Ottawa River; no wonder that I bumped into fellow Master racers with young kids at the hill.

Old double lift, nice lodge…until recently, there was also a pair of old T-bars. I realized that the steep T-Bar only had the cable left. It’s a shame, I remember riding that thing when my daughters were young. At that time I gained much respect for my mother as she often rode T-Bars with me, especially the mandatory steep North side T-Bars at Tremblant.

The racers did a few runs on Birch Valley waiting for course to open for inspection. The surface was a mixed of frozen granular with a small layer of fresh snow. Jon was joining me for the morning, but first he had to drop his youngest at Edelweiss and then return to Vorlage. Jon as three kids in the program, the former parent rep for the Club has moved into the Head Coach position. His two other kids were racing at the U16 race at Cascades. He radioed me when he was back at Vorlage. Funny, but fellow coaches at Edelweiss thought they heard me on the radio. The distance between Edelweiss and Vorlage is less than 4km as the crow flies. The course held up fine throughout the day and didn’t rut up as feared. The surfaces were slick and good edges couldn’t be undersold. Finished the day with a run to the Lodge via Golden and the Cream Puff pitch in order to avoid all the skating…especially when you don’t have any ski poles. Edelweiss girls had great results for first year U14 racers.

Pictures courtesy of Kunstadt Sports

Sarah


Emelyn


Sierra, fastest girl. The fastest boy wasn’t in the picture gallery.

More pictures from the Vorlage race on Kunstadt Sports’ Facebook page

Vorlage U14 Slalom Results Ladies
1 SMITH, Sierra MARIE 48.52 46.81 1:35.33
2 THOMAS, Sophie VORLA 50.27 47.55 1:37.82
3 CARPENTIER, Maude ASM 49.78 49.72 1:39.50

Vorlage U14 Slalom Results Men
1 DUFF, Sam CALAB 46.79 43.51 1:30.30
2 CLARK, Tyler MARIE 47.58 45.41 1:32.99
3 KISLICH-LEMYRE, York FORTU 47.53 47.45 1:34.98

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Sunday : GS on Canadian & Chute at Camp Fortune – Iceline down Chute

It started snowing again. This morning’s drive to Chelsea was even a shorter. Camp Fortune’s Skyline is definitely a steeper hill with runs like Heggtveit, Swan Dive and The Chute. The U14 race was set from the top of Canadian then dropping down the narrow B-Net line couloir called The Chute, an especially intimidating hill to run a GS course. My daughter Morgane race down an icy Chute back in 2011. You almost had to wonder if Camp Fortune hadn’t traded their snow groomers for zambonis machine instead? It was hard just to hold on the icy slope during inspection. Racers had to inspect from the side behind the blue dye in the steepest part of the Chute.

All the main black runs on Skyline were slick if not down right icy. It was even more surprising that someone was skinning and going switchbacks up Heggtveit prior to the lifts opening.

Racers had to be ahead and stay forward, if not it could be the end of the race. Bindings also had to set right, as it was rough and many skis popped off. Snow started falling in the afternoon. The success rate in finishing is generally greater in GS compare to Slalom, but it wasn’t the case between both race this weekend. Sierra Smith smoked all the girls and boys by a huge 4-seconds margin. I raced at the same time as her mom, Julie Klotz, back in my university racing days, in fact the ex-Canadian team member is one of the girls with the most victories on the Quebec university circuit. Julie isn’t the only ex-National team member and Canadian champion; she is deeply involved in current ski racing in the Outaouais Zone. On the Fortune Race / Ottawa Ski Club side which has formed so many top rate racers; former and recent Canadian champs and World Cup racers Patrick Biggs and JP Roy have joined the club. In comparison the Edelweiss U14 team is extremely modest, almost as small as the one member U14 team of Upper Ottawa Valley.

Both Edelweiss girls only managed to finish one run each. There was definitely a few disappointed faces across the different teams. But they will be another race…as Edna Mode says, they have to pull themselves together for the next race…to success, to fight and WIN!!!


Emelyn


Girl crashing. They would be a huge delay to remove her from the hill


Sarah falling in the compression


Sierra Smith is the fastest racer today. Heading for her second victory of the weekend


Eric Guimond, first year U14 and winner for the Boys

More pictures from the Camp Fortune race on Kunstadt Sports’ Facebook page

Camp Fortune U14 Giant Slalom Results Ladies
1 SMITH, Sierra MARIE 35.70 35.14 1:10.84
2 THOMAS, Sophie VORLA 37.25 37.45 1:14.70
3 TAN, Sophia CALAB 39.10 38.72 1:17.82

Camp Fortune U14 Giant Slalom Results Men
1 GUIMONT, Eric VORLA 38.36 37.39 1:15.75
2 KISLICH-LEMYRE, York FORTU 38.58 37.74 1:16.32
3 MARLER, Aidan MARIE 39.14 37.26 1:16.40

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After a 1AM arrival from March Break with the last two days on both side of the QuébecVermont border: it was time to get up real early and head for Edelweiss to work for the Masters Finals. For the second year in a row, I wasn’t in it. Instead of playing with the camera as role of photographer like last year’s Finals at Cascades; this year I had a drill and some gates.

As the previous weekend at Edelweiss, I was working the race. However a Masters’ race is easier going than the U16 Championships. The whole family was out for this one. Morgane and the other U14 and U16 racers were going to forerun the first of either the GS or the Slalom runs. After two days of pain in her knees, Morgane was feeling better. Morgane would have been 3rd fastest girl if she could enter the race. Maybe in a few years? 🙂

To my surprise, the race was being held on Zoomer instead of the initial planed Strief. They were some concern that Strief was going to be real fast with hard conditions, so they was a decision on making it safer for everyone. The conditions were bullet proof. The start was set just above the pitch. Dan also set the course in order to contour problem spots with little snow on Zoomer with made an interesting line for GS and the Slalom. The slalom was going across the upper pitch then lined up to one of the quad chair pylons.

Last year I made 24 runs during the race: this year it was 10 over 6:40. The Masters Finals are always fun: its day time, not freezing cold and dark. After the race people have time to chill or make a few runs before heading inside to the end-of-the-season door prizes.

Instead of repeating Gary’s detailed description of how it went down; I’ll quote the Ottawa Masters Ski Association prez for the most of the rest.

The Edelweiss Finals

Wow! What perfect model for how to run a great race!

The day started chilly, -12.5C by my thermometer. Light clouds and lots of sun. The temp held, climbing only to -8C throughout the day. The conditions were perfect for a ski race. Groomed corduroy, hard fast snow and great viz.

In the morning, the scene was humming. Gates were going up. At the finish hut, they set up score boards, outdoor PA for time announcements, aligning the beam and hay bales.
They set up a corral and then, they decided to expand it. I head Pat say they were doing it for Gary. I piped up and said “Thanks Pat, that’s awfully thoughtful of you” To which Pat replied, “Not you, Fast Gary.” Hmmmm. So I guess that makes me, what? Aahhh, Slow Gary? The Presidents Curse strikes again.

The World Cup points race was on the line. Benoit was leading the series all winter and wearing the yellow bib. But Gary J, with 5 wins in a row was slowly catching him up. By Saturday morning, the deficit was cut to 28 points, which meant Gary had to win 2. It was looking good but then Bob showed up. Everybody knows Bob is strong in the Slalom and he was there to win.

The Ladies division was pretty much clinched by Kathleen and Carmen, but the bronze was still open for the taking. Sarah was holding that spot, but she was out west. Erin was coming back from a soccer injury. Could she do it?

The World Beer Cup Points was led most of the season by Vladimir. He has been training like a madman. As the defending beer cup champion, he was looking repeat with back to back wins. Never been done before. The beer points is the most volatile division, you just never know who’s get it all together and win the 100 points on the day. In this division more than any other, it is never over, till it’s over. Only about 150 points separated 1st from 5th. Would Greg Z or Chris Z step it up? Would Vlad choke on the foam?

At the end of the day, who took it?

This is what happened on Zoomer that day:

Podium GS race Mens / Ladies / Beer Points:
Gold JONES, Gary / DEVOST, Karine / MALEY, Shane
Silver BERNIER, Benoit / CONNELLY, Kathleen / DESAULNIERS, Roger
Bronze SUDERMANN, Robert / HALL, Erin / PACHNER, Martin

Podium SL race Mens / Ladies :
Gold SUDERMANN, Robert / DEVOST, Karine / WISMER, Laura
Silver JONES, Gary / WISMER, Laura / MALEY, Shane
Bronze BERNIER, Benoit / PORTER, Carmen / SUDERMANN, Robert

So Gary won his 6th race in a row in the morning, but finished 2nd to Bob for the slalom. Although Ben made it on the podium for both race, it wasn’t enough to maintain is lead. Gary finished ahead of Ben by one step on the podium in both races.

In the Ladies, past Canadian Masters Champion Karine took a break from being a busy mom to show to everyone that she still had ‘it’ winning both races.

Here is who won what at the end of the year Banquet:

2013 Ladies Champions:
Gold CONNELLY, Kathleen
Silver PORTER, Carmen
Bronze HALL, Erin

2013 Mens Champions:
Gold JONES, Gary
Silver BERNIER, Benoit
Bronze BLEW, Brian

2013 Beer Points Champs:
Gold ZULIANI, Chris
Silver MARTINCEVIC, Vladimir
Bronze DUVAL, Melanie

2013 Dave Gowan Award:
This years award winner is an individual who has been with the masters organization for a few years now and is a stalwart member of the new skool gang – the group of young, fast, die-hard skiers, out to make us grey hair bifocal wearing fuddies wish we were in the bar. He attended 10 out of 12 races. He was one of 4 racers who improved his beer points handicap in both disciplines. His sense of humor and Masters spirit was set when he raced in a Green Morph Suit at Cascades.
The deal clincher was set when he flew home on the Red Eye from Cuba landing at 5AM so that he could attend the finals. Leaving someplace warm, to race in the Finals? Now that’s dedication to the craft! And that’s why this years winner is:
Chris Evans

The staff and members of the Edelweiss Race Club pulled out every stop and delivered an amazing race. The races were set perfectly, started on time. The course crew were efficient and friendly. The lunch was excellent and prompt. The bar party was great. Thanks a lot to JS, Ken, Jonathan, Patrick and the rest of the Edel Race team and staff.

Good Job, Well Done.

I hope you all had a great season and you all come back next year for some more Ottawa Masters Ski Racing Fun!

This was the end of the Masters racing, but my daughter still had one race to go. The following day was another early start with the U16’s Dual at Calabogie Peaks. Another early morning where everyone had to be at Calabogie Peaks for 7:30am for that Sunday race and they are a good 60 minutes from our house in Ottawa. Courage…it is the last race.

Full Slalom Race and Beer Points results
Full Slalom Race and Beer Points

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Pictures courtesy of the Ottawa Masters Ski Association

John
John Irvin, founding members of the Ottawa Masters

Reg
Dominique and Sophie at registration. It couldn’t happen without them. Note some of the door prize behind

Shaun
Shaun Fripp, Canadian Ski Hall of Fame member and one of the founding members of the Ottawa Masters

Fripp
Shaun and Kim Fripp – uncle and nephew, both member of the Canadian Ski Team at one point (Kim for Ski Jumping at the 1976 Olympics). The Fripp family have been called Ottawa’s Von Trapp Family 🙂

Skis
Skis are race ready

Forerunner
Morgane and the other U16 Edelweiss Team Forerunners

Start
The race is about to start with veteran Peter Kunstadt in the gate

Gary
Gary J on his way to win the Championships

Combine
Combine Alpine and Breakdancing?

Kim
Kim looking at the results and repeating the Masters’ Motto : “The older we get, the faster we were

Group picture
Group picture

Click HERE to see the rest of the album from Ottawa Masters Edelweiss Finals.

LIKE the Ottawa Masters Racing Club Facebook Page

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In a Day in a Life of Chief of Course for U16 Slalom Championship Race. It was a busy weekend, after the end of the awards presentations for the GS Championships at MSM on Saturday, a few of the Edelweiss parents headed for Edelweiss to make sure everything was ready for own big day instead of back home in Ottawa. It was a short evening…and an early morning. A few teenagers weren’t too happy with the detour.

It was already a challenge as the whole family at the hill for 7:30am. I finally managed to get out of the race room and on the lift at 7:50am. I needed to work on the race coral, finish coral, gates, fencing, work on the start, coordinate course crew, etc. The temperature was a nice sunny -7c. This was the only U16 race at Edelweiss this season and the only race on Strief with has a pretty intimidating pitch. The Edelweiss coach had set a similar course for Tuesday night training in order for the kids to get ready for Strief race.

Conditions were almost perfect as it was bullet proof with no major course work needed. The new brush gates don’t pop out as much as the old strew gates. It’s funny, when the screw gates arrived on the race scene, it was the best thing since slice bread.

I stayed at the start or at the top of the pitch for the whole race, so I didn’t really get to ski much; maybe a bit of boots skiing from the start to the pitch. Let’s just say that it was a much easier day than the nightmare 2011 Finals two years ago when everything went wrong and the power went out. We had to scrabble to find forerunner; it was eventually a few coaches, unfortunately one of them injured his knee.

As for my day, I did one run to the bottom prior to the race to start, one quick just prior to the inspection of the second run in the afternoon followed by three others at the end of the race in order to coordinates the stuff (B-netting, fencing, gates) brought down from teardown. I had to make two more trips to the top to bring stuff at the top for the upcoming Wednesday night’s Masters race. The total of nine hours on the hill was only Five runs: a long day, at least it wasn’t -1000c.

Here is a small video from skirace802 on Youtube that some people who ever race could relate:

Here are some of the few pictures from the start or top of the Strief Pitch as seen from the Chief of Course.


Testing the timing


Edelweiss team at the top of the pitch


Waiting at the start with Patrol on Stand-By


Caroline


Morgane


Boys’ turn : Coach and Tristan


Chris


Heading for a 10th fastest time. Unfortunately didn’t finish the second run like over one-third of the Boys.


Tristan: Just behind Chris in the 1st run with an 11th place. He would finish 11th overall


Nick


Course setting for a 44 gates second run


Course measuring distance between gates


Chief of Race and Start Ref looking at the second run start list


Second run under way – last picture before the battery died

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MadPat’s Gallery
Edelweiss : March 3, 2013 – U16 SL

Race results : Boys and Girls

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I believe this might be a first? For the first time ever, Morgane had more ski days than me at anytime during a ski season. Heading into this Sunday, she was at 25 days versus MadPat’s 24 total. This was her 6th day at MSM this season and she was going to return next weekend for the GS Championship race.

Morgane and the rest of the team left Ottawa early Wednesday to head to Speed Camp. She trained, skied and raced Super G for the last 4 days. This was the Art Tommy race which Morgane missed out last season due to her breaking her leg only 3 days prior to the Camp.

The whole family was up early for this one: MSM isn’t next door. We showed up to the cottage that the team was renting, but everyone had cleared out. I did a few runs with the family including the steep Betsy with Tara. The snow wasn’t slick first thing in the morning, but it was going to change as skiers skied, slide or side-slipped it. Formidable looked icier from the get-go. While I was waiting for the kids to ski in the race, Caroline and Tara continued to make some runs on the Cheval Blanc side.

The kids were using most of the Outaouais trail with its drops, turns and rolls, which is one of the favorite runs in the region. The race was using the entire trail, so to leave the start area you either needed to climb back up a bit for a traverse or do like a I did, bushwhack out towards Betsy eventually.

The race was a super combine in which the 2nd run would be a slalom in the afternoon. Even if Morgane is light and racing on 175s versus the bigger girls on 195s, however her overall results were much better in speed events versus Slalom, especially this season. This was also the case today.

At lunch, Tara had seen two of her friends that belonged to a ski club which bused kids from Ottawa to different hills every weekend. They managed to tag up to each for the last few runs of the day on Vanier, the main side of the ski area. Not as steep and added some variety to the limited runs on the Cheval Blanc side. Once the race was over, I did a few runs on Vanier and managed to tag up with them. Although there was a layer of fresh snow in the morning and snowed most of the day, the snow on scrapped off to the slick side the steeper runs. I noticed a new glade on the Vanier side, but it looked even more scraped off.

Next weekend is the Finals with a return trip to MSM for the GS championship and the first U16 race of the season; the slalom championship. It’s been a busy season.


Morgane at the start


With coach and Caroline


Tara is tired of waiting for the race to start


Caroline


Morgane


Finish area


Tara skiing Betsy


Mrs.MadPat and Tara at the bottom of Betsy on Carousel


Chris


Nick


Simon


Tristan


Skiing across the other side on Frank-Pouliotte


Vanier side within sights


Ski Chalet at the bottom of Vanier side


Afternoon inspection prior to Slalom Run


Start area has been lowered for Slalom Run


Morgane’s slalom run


Chris


Tristan


Nick


Simon


Trails on the Vanier side from the top of Cheval Blanc


Skier on Vanier side ; Cheval Blanc’s trail in the distance


A glade : this is new


The fairly new Sudermann Side trail on the South side with no lift back


Upper Serenade


Mrs.Madpat with Tara and friends on park’s edge


Tara in the park


Podium for the U16 Boys

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MadPat’s Gallery:
Mont Ste-Marie : February 24, 2012 – U16 SC

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