World Ski Mountaineering Championships - Relay Race and Final Awards

Thursday was the final day of the World Ski Mountaineering Championships and it ended with the always fun to watch Relay Race.

The team had another very early morning to catch a 6:30 but and get to the race.  The team warmed up while the Youth Relay Race went on.  The US Women were 1 of 7 teams competing in teams of 3 in the race.  Our racers were Meredith, Sarah, and Jessie.  We knew our largest competition would be the Canadian Team. Meredith was our first racer and had the challenge of keeping up with Canadian Mel Bernier.  Meredith did a great job keeping her within ~40 seconds.  Meredith handed off to Sarah who was able to catch the second Canadian racer and get a ~15 second lead on her.  Sarah handed off to Jessie who continued to increase the US lead giving the women a 5th place finish for the US's highest finish of the week.

A very excited 5th place women's relay team

 

The men’s race had 12 teams and it was sure to be a very competitive and close race between the top teams.  Our US Men’s Team consisted of Andy, Colin, Teague and Billy.  The men were excited to try to keep up with the women by beating a very strong Canadian Team.  All of our men had a great race, but were not quite strong enough to hold off the Canadian team.

The 2015 US National Ski Mountaineering Team

 

Overall Women's World Champions (3rd: Maude; 2nd: Axelle; 1st: Laetitia)

 

Overall Men's World Champions (3rd: Anton; 2nd: Killian; 1st: Robert)

 

Overall Team Awards - The US was 10th (Coach Chad is third from the right)

As is customary after the closing ceremonies there was a huge party with free flowing wine and beer, dancing, music, and other mischief.  The team enjoyed themselves enough at the closing ceremonies that we won't share those photos.

The US had some of our best ever finishes with several men and women in the top 30 as well as some of our best finishes in races. Here are links to the results

For additional photos of the races, please check out the ISMF Facebook page, USSMA Facebook, USSMA Instagram, USSMA Twitter, as well as the Facebook pages and blogs of our US Team.

World Ski Mountaineering Championships - Teams Race

The Teams Race is one of the best races of the World Ski Mountaineering Championships. This year’s course was going to be amazing. The men would climb almost 2200M and the women would climb almost 2000M. The descents were steep and rocky. The sun had come out on Tuesday so the course was also going to be icy in the morning. Things started a little hectic with the start being delayed 30 minutes to 9:30 for ice, then 30 at 8:35 the race start being moved back to 9:00. We scrambled to find all our athletes and get them warming up.

Men’s Team

  • Tom Goth / Jason Dorais
  • Max Taam / John Gaston
  • Scott Simmons / Eric Carter
  • Teague Holmes / Jon Brown

Women’s Team

  • Lindsay Plant / Jessie Young
  • Meredith Edwards / McKenna Douglas
  • Sarah Cookler / Jari Kirkland

All of the races started at a very fast pace and before we knew it they were almost to the top of the first 557M climb. After the women’s race started (15 minutes after the men), we rushed to Les Attelas to watch the racers on their second ascent. It was amazing to watch their pace.

Our men and women all looked strong at the top of the second climb. The third descent was rock and icy and all of the racers reported it to be a very challenging descent. This course was not for the faint of heart or those that were not very strong skiers. It was on this descent that John Gaston broke his boot in half. This only fazed him briefly and he continued to charge down another 1200M+ of descents with only 1 functional boot. There are not many racers who could have accomplished this.

From the finish line it was amazing to watch the racers come screaming down a solid ice run make 2 hairpin turns and skate hard into the finish line.

The Team had the best finishes we have every had in the teams race.

Men’s Team Finishes

  • Tom/Jason: 11th
  • Max/John: 15rh
  • Scott/Eric: 19th
  • Teague/Jon: 26th

Women’s Team Finishes

  • Lindsay/ Jessie: 6th
  • Meredith/McKenna: 11th
  • Sarah/Jari: 14th

Tom & Jason at Les Attelas

Scott and Eric at Les Attelas

John & Max at Les Attelas

Jon Brown at Les Attelas

Jessie Young at Les Attelas

Jason and Tom skiing to an 11th place finish

Meredith and McKenna happy to finish

Women's Team

World Ski Mountaineering Championships - Individual Race

Team USA had a great Individual Race on Monday.  Here are the official results.

Men's Team

  1. John Gaston - 27th
  2. Jason Dorais - 33rd
  3. Tom Goth - 39th
  4. Scott Simmons - 55th
  5. Matt Burgunder (Espoir Division) - 78th

Women's Team

  1. Lindsay Plant - 20th
  2. Jessie Young - 23rd
  3. Sarah Cookler - 29th
  4. Meredith Edwards - 30th

We were very excited as a team as these were the highest finishes for the group as a whole.

Start of men's race

 

Scott Simmons on descent 1

Tom, Scott, Jason, and Tom at the Finish

 

Sarah, Meredith, Jessie, Lindsay at the finish

 

 

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