Who’s looking fastest as the season gets into full swing BY BILL MCCOLLOM
Racing Around the Nation
New England Masters Series
The new director of New England Masters Skiing, Jim McKeon, said: “The
weekend was a great success. Joining forces with ASRA brought some good
competition along with a fun party and
lots of great socializing.”
the guest racer in the GS, said she
thought the snow to be a bit firm de-
spite the efforts of the race crew to
soften it up.
The slick surface didn’t phase the top
women, however, as last year’s Series
winner, Jen Kaufman (Class 3) sliced
it up to take the women’s race and nab
a fourth place overall. Close in her
wake were Vicki Valar in second and
Jeanette Saylor in third. Lalive was
solidly in the hunt after the first run,
but spun out on the second run.
The men claimed the snow surface
was even harder for them, but Broc
Thompson (Class 4) found his rhythm
in posting the fastest time, followed
by Sandy Treat (Class 6), and Stein Halnes (Class 7).
Killington, Vt.; Dec. 12, 13
There were a lot of “firsts” involved
in the opening Sise Cup events at
Killington, Vt. With little snow on
the ground in the East before the
races, Saturday’s GS marked the first
day on snow for some, the first gates
for many and the first voyage on new
race skis for most. There was another first with the combining of racers
representing both the American Ski
Racing Alliance (ASRA) league and
the New England Masters series.
The end result was a full field of
more than 120 racers, two competitive days of racing, plenty of socializing — and a few aches and pains for the ride home.
Mike Shklovski seems to enjoy the Golden State racing.
With the races on Bunny Buster, a trail not likely to strike fear into the hearts
of racers, the GS ran short and fast; Sunday’s slalom ran long and fast. Finding
the fall line (as well as dormant muscle memory) to win on both days was the
ageless Class 7 racer Mark George. Trouncing Ben Green (a friend of George’s
daughter Katy and last year’s Sise Cup winner) in the GS was a major coup for
George, but thankfully not the source of any family strife. Class 4 racer Alex
Gadbois settled for third.
Following George in the slalom were Robert Jaffe (Class 4) and Class 8 racer
Bill Brennan, who was awarded the “Fogie Award” (fastest old guy, or gal) for
Kevin Ward’s fundraising dinner on Saturday evening might have been the
source of some foggy goggles in Sunday’s slalom, but once again the trio of
Kaufman, Valar and Susan Roberts (Class 4) claimed spots on the podium
and even more impressively placed third, fourth and eighth in the overall
standings. Jen Kaufman couldn’t help but rub it in a bit, saying: “I guess the
women proved that when the going gets tough, beauty beats brawn every
day.” Class 4’s Dave Gengenback and David Griffen were the only men not
to get “girled” in the slalom, taking the top two spots, while Frank Mangold
(Class 5) slid into third.
Martha Hanright (Bergstrom) from the Class 5 ranks made her return to mas-
ters ski racing a success after a knee incident several years ago on her first at-
tempt. She nipped perennial favorite Lisa Densmore (Class 6) and Katy George
Vociferous thanks from all the racers were extended to Loveland Ski Area and
race sponsors Kevin Ward and Katrina Lindell.
(Class 1) in a close race.
Snowbasin, Utah; Dec. 19, 20
Densmore turned the tables in the slalom with a solid win over George and
The early season race at Snowbasin, Utah, featured perfect weather, perfect
snow, and long courses that guaranteed to burn at least a few thighs. The
pair of slaloms on Dec. 19 and 20 also showed that old guys and fast women
Rocky Mountain Masters
Loveland, Colo.; Dec. 12, 13
“Slick” was the adjective of the weekend
at the Loveland, Colo., masters races on
December 12 and 13. This was in refer-
ence to the race organization, the level
of skiing in both the GS and slalom and,
especially, the snow surface of the race
hill. The hill was water-injected for the
early season USST training and racing
and only got harder over time. Even
ex-World Cup star Caroline Lalive,
Coming back from injuries, illness, pes-
tilence and plague to score a first and sec-
ond in the two men’s races was Victor Roy.
New to Class 8 as of this season, Roy re-
covered from a severe summer lung infec-
tion in time to take the win in the opening
race over Bob Skinner (Class 6) and Kevin
Brower (Class 1). In the second race, a
Class 2 speedster from Salt Lake City,
Craig Norden, got past the “old man” Roy
for the win, while Rick Slabinski (Class 6)
showed he’s as nimble on the short skis as
he is fast on the long skis to take third.
With the winning times coming in at
close to one minute, racers were wheezing