The staff of the Rikert Nordic Center overcame one of the most dramatic winter events in recent history and provided a top notch Eastern Cup racing experience today in Ripton, Vermont. Despite losing the majority of their natural snow in yesterday’s torrential rain, the groomers were able to tie together a 1.4km sprint course as temperatures plummeted into the single digits early this morning. As teams arrived to the venue they were greeted by windblown sleet, however by competition time the precipitation turned to snow and the wind subsided.
Today’s event was a classic sprint with qualification starting at 11am. The afternoon was filled with head to head heat skiing by the top thirty overall skiers, and the next 12 fastest U16 racers in male and female categories. Daniel Streinz (Outdoor Sports Institute) of Hersey, Maine and Anna Lehmann (Stratton Mountain School) of Windham, Vermont were the top qualifiers on the day. Streinz turned in a time of 3:21.91 and Lehmann 4:14.02.
Callie Young of Craftsbury Nordic Ski Club took the overall female victory of the day winning the Women’s A Final. Mae Chalmers of the Stratton Mountain School placed second and Pheobe Sweet of Craftsbury was third.
In the Men’s A Final Daniel Streinz showed he was the class of the field by taking the overall victory after qualifying number 1. James Kitch of the Cambridge Sports Union secured his first Eastern Cup podium by placing second. He was followed by John Henry Paluszek of Gunstock Nordic in third.
The top three U16 skiers of the day in both the boys and girls races qualified and skied in the Open heats. For the girls, Nina Seemann of the Stratton Mountain School took top honors, placing 15th overall. Magdalena Lelito of Mansfield Nordic took second in 17th overall and Adrienne Remick from Craftsbury was third on Lelito’s heels in 18th.
Will Koch of the Stratton Mountain School was the top U16 boy finishing the qualifier and the open rounds in the 12th position. Aidan Burt of Mansfield was the second U16 on the day placing 2oth overall and Finn Sweet was third with a 26th overall placement.
In the U16 rounds Carl Kellogg of the Green Mountain School took the victory in the A Final followed by Linden Niedeck of CSU and Gavin Blauch of Stratton. Although five other U16 girls finished in the top 30 overall, it was Ali Priganc of Mansfield who skied to victory in the U16 A Final. She was followed by Samantha Nolan also of Mansfield in second and home town skier, Malia Hodges in third.
There were three masters skiers in the Men’s field and Brad Bates of the Dublin School took top honors. He was followed by Mark Rajack hailing from Trinidad and Tobago and Joel Bradley of Ford Sayre.
Racing resumes tomorrow with individual start skate races. Temperatures are going to be near zero and rising into the single digits — dress warm and come check out the action at the Rikert Nordic Center.
Complete results can be found on the NENSA results page.
Detailed information including schedule and course maps for Sunday’s race can be found on the Virtual Team Captains Meeting (VTCM) page.
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