Far West skiers race through Sugar Bowl
Far West U14 skiers kicked off the season with a slalom race held in firm conditions at Sugar Bowl this past weekend.
Payton Norton of the Diamond Peak Ski Team claimed victory in the boys race on Saturday by posting a two-run combined time of 1:28.18.
He was followed by Cameron Smith of the Squaw Valley Ski Team, who finished with a time of 1:30.69, and Charlie Regelbrugge of Mammoth, who finished in 1:31.03.
First-year racer Gunnar Barnwell finished ninth with a ninth-place finish.
“Gunnar has been working hard in dry land training with our high school team in an effort to compete with the older boys, if he skis a bit more aggressive he could find himself on the podium,” Heavenly & Whittell Ski coach Christine “Corky” Woodcock said.
Kirkwood Ski & Education Foundation’s James Gonzales just edged out Heavenly Ski team second-year skier Sean Dunkelman with a time of 2:11:32 compared to Dunkelman’s time of 2:13:34. Dunkelman finished 40th out of a field of 85 boys. Kirkwood Ski team member Tyler Loll was disqualified on his first run but was able to finish in the top third on his second run.
In the girls race, Belle Johnson gave Diamond Peak skiers a sweep of the top finishes on the day as she handily won with a combined time of 1:32.57. Mack Carkeet of Mammoth was runner-up in 1:37.99 and Sengen Meyer of Squaw Valley was third in 1:40.21.
Heavenly Ski Team racer Cypress Sell had a top-20 finish Saturday in her first outing, turning in a combined first race time of just over 2 minutes.
The young skiers faced the same hard-pack conditions for Day 2 on Sunday.
Sugar Bowl Ski Team member Dashiell Prince-Judd represented his home mountain with a victory in the boys race, setting the bar with a two-run combined time of 1:26.78. Regelbruggge was second in 1:28.84 and Isaac Mozen of Squaw Valley rounded out the top three in 1:29.21.
Barnwell took eleventh place and a combined time of 1:35:80. Kirkwood’s Daniel Drapeau and Bennett Norman both placed in the top 15 while Tyler Loll finished 28th. Dunkelman missed the 12th gate on his first run, disqualifying him from the race, but posted 46.82 on his second run, putting him in the top 15 fastest finishes.
Sell unfortunately missed the third-to-last gate Sunday knocking her out of a top-20 finish.
A total of 166 skiers raced on the weekend.
The next races for Far West U14 racers are two giant slaloms at Squaw Valley on Jan. 25 and 26. See live-timing.com for results.