This weekend marks the beginning of Popular Racing for the 2024 ski season with the Quarry Road Opener in Waterville, Maine. Natural snow and increasing snowmaking capabilities across the region have set the stage for a wonderful winter! NENSA is so fortunate to be working with excellent venues and partner clubs across New England, allowing for a robust 2023-2024 NENSA Popular Race Series. There are 22 Highlighted Popular Events on our schedule, which includes 21 individual Zak Cup competitions and nine more Club competitions (you can find on our Events Calendar). Within the Series there are nine marathons! All 31 events (and the eight Eastern Cup races) will be scored to season-long Club Cup standings.
Popular races are intended to be inclusive events for all skiers, with options for those just exploring the sport to veteran competitors. NENSA works with event organizers to make your experience the best it can be, from registration and promotion, to course prep, results and awards. Local clubs and venues rally to create their own festive touches that make awesome community gatherings — including music, food and robust award ceremonies.
The community produced the #skiingbettertogether this summer — please use this hashtag and mention NENSA in your personal media so we can share our journeys this winter!
NENSA continues to automate scoring of both Zak and Club Cup. Throughout the winter NENSA members will receive discounted entry at many of the events. We hope individuals will consider renewing memberships early and that clubs will check in ([email protected]) and make sure their NENSA Club Membership is current. Both of these steps insure that event timers and NENSA staff will have the best data possible, which allows us to provide the best product.
Zak Cup scoring is a way for senior and master skiers to have friendly rivalries across the race series, with both age group and overall classification. At the end of the season, the top three competitors of each age group will receive a coveted NENSA mug. In the winter of 2021 the scope of Club Cup scoring was expanded to include not only Popular Races, but also the four Eastern Cup weekends in an effort to reflect the broadest club participation across all competitive events. The structure for Club Cup scoring has a points base of 60 points for a win for any given category, then decreasing by 1 point per place. Up to three skiers per category score points for their club.
All races will score the following age groups:
U16 ages 14-15, U18 ages 16-17, U20 ages 18-19
SR ages 20-29, M1 ages 30-34, M2 ages 35-39, M3 ages 40-44
M4 ages 45-49, M5 ages 50-54, M6 ages 55-59, M7 ages 60-64
M8 ages 65-69, M9 ages 70-74, M10 ages 75-79, M11 ages 80-84
M12 ages 85-89, M13 ages 90-94, M14 ages 95-99, M15 ages 100+
We also track participation across the Marathon Races with a Challenge for skiers to complete three or more of these events. Last years 40 marathon skiers will be receiving a co-branded NENSA / LL Bean hat in the mail in the coming week. 2024 Marathon Challengers will receive a Skida Hat! We are excited to to have a range of “marathon” distances, some that are 20+ km all the way up to 50km, with a balance of both classic and freestyle.
Whether you are a seasoned veteran, a recreational skier or a junior looking for a local race there really is something for everyone on the calendar. We look forward to a long winter, and the return of the Club Relay Championships & End-of-Season Celebration during the NENSA Spring Series at Craftsbury on March 23rd and 24th. NENSA will recognize season-long Zak, and Club awards as well as other NENSA Awards at this joyous occasion. NENSA mugs will be awarded to the top-3 in each season-long Zak Age Group for those that are present.
Think snow and reach out to [email protected] with any questions.