|2013-2014 JUNIOR NATIONALS QUALIFIERS|
|December 21, 2013||ASC Freestyle Sprints||Auburn Ski Club||1km|
|December 22, 2013||Snowshoe Thompson Classic||Auburn Ski Club||5km|
|January 20, 2014||Sierra Skogsloppet||Tahoe Donner XC||U18/U20 boys 15km; U18/U20 girls 10km; U16s 5km|
|February 2, 2014||Allan Bard Classic||Tamarack Lodge||U18/U20 boys 10km; U18/U20 girls & U16s 5km|
|February 7, 2014||Super JNQ Classic Sprint||Soldier Hollow|
|February 8, 2014||Super JNQ Freestyle||Soldier Hollow||15km/10km/5km|
|February 17, 2014||President's Cup||Auburn Ski Club||5km|
Far West Nordic is no longer employing a head coach, and as such is not able to provide wax support at JNQ races. Waxing for JNQ races is either done by the individual racers and their families, or by their team/club coaches. Race wax recommendations are available on the Race Schedulepage. Most team/club coaches are willing to help unaffiliated racers with wax advice and application, but only after they have taken care of the racers they are responsible for. It's advisable to make these arrangements in advance if needed.
If you are planning on going to Junior Nationals (formerly called Junior Olympics or JO's) in Vermont for Far West Nordic this year, or are even thinking of attempting to qualify for a spot on the team, READ this information and take action on it as soon as possible, as there are important changes you need to know about in the planning for JN's for 2014. Make sure to read all the way through, even if you're not sure about JN's.
Junior Nationals Qualifying Criteria for 2014
You must be a current member of Far West Nordic (and not any other USSA division).
There are 7 qualifier races for the Junior Nationals Competition scheduled for 2013/2014 (see schedule above).
Junior racers must ski in 4 of the 7 races, and have a QUALIFYING time in 3 races, including both a classic and a freestyle (skate) race.
Far West policy mandates that:
Junior Nationals team selection criteria shall be principally objective (performance-based);
JN Selection Committee discretion be limited to no more than twenty-five percent (25%) of the total team size.
This year, Far West Nordic will be using both a PERCENTAGE BACK and a QUOTA/RANKING SYSTEM for selection to the Junior Nationals Team. For an explanation and examples of the quota system, CLICK HERE.
Currently, 100% fluorocarbons (Swix Cera-F, Toko Jetstream and HelX, etc.) may be used in any FW Junior National Qualifiers. It is recommended that fluorocarbon top-coats be applied with either a rotocork or hand cork and that a respirator be used for ALL wax applications. Remember that if 100% fluorocarbons are used for a JNQ those skis must be warm-scraped or cleaned with fluoro-specific wax remover before a CNISSF race as 100% fluorocarbons are not allowed in school races.
Each USSA division has a quota of 21 men & 21 women (USSA Nordic Competition Guide Rule 74.1). Automatic qualifiers do not count against the quota. USSA allows no more than 12 athletes in any one age class (Rule 83.5).
As per USSA rules, automatic qualifiers are:
• A top 20 junior at US Nationals
• A Scandinavian Cup or World Junior participant
• An NCAA racer who is in the top 20 men or women in the East, West, or Central overall ranking.
Eligibility for Consideration
Far West will consider for selection only those Far West members in good standing. An athlete shall be ineligible for consideration if he/she is not fit to compete at the time selections are made due to any injury or illness from which he/she is not expected to recover adequately by the time of the Junior Nationals.
Junior National Age Classes for 2013/2014 Ski Season
New Junior Age Group Nomenclature as of 2013-2014 season
The “J” age groups have been eliminated in favor of a “U” system, which is more common across junior sports. OJs are now U20s, J1s are U18s, J2s are U16s, J3s are U14s, J4s are U12s, and so on.
The 6 age & gender classes that participate in Junior Nationals are U16 (men & women born 1998 & 1999), U18 (men & women born 1996 & 1997) and U20 (men & women born 1994-1995).
The competition year begins on January 1st and ends on December 31st of the calendar year in which the JROC is held.
U14 Athletes (Updated for 2013/2014!):
Junior Nationals is a competition for U16 athletes and above (an athlete who has turned 14 years old by the December 31st preceding that season's competition). U14's are encouraged to race in the Far West Qualifiers to gain race experience. U14 racers will be timed and be in the results, but shall not be counted or scored in the Team qualification or selection procedure.
In rare circumstances, Far West will consider the petition from a second year U14 athlete to attend Junior Nationals. A 2nd-year U14 athlete may only petition to attend Junior Nationals if they had qualifying times of 1% or less against the U16 field in three junior national qualifier races, including at least one skate and one classic. Any U14 who has not met this criteria may not submit a petition.
Moreover, if an athlete meets the criteria listed above and submits a petition, Far West reserves the right to reject the petition, as the decision to send a U14 athlete is based on more than results in the qualifiers. The Far West Junior Committee’s discretion and will consider factors including, without limitation, space availability on the team, athlete’s maturity and general readiness, performance, impact on the team, location of Junior Nationals and travel accommodations, and any other factors deemed appropriate.
Team Selection Procedure and Criteria
The Far West JN Selection Committee is responsible for applying the selection criteria set forth herein, subject to the oversight of the Far West Board of Directors.
Step 1: QUALIFICATION: Junior racers must ski in 4 of the 7 races, and have a QUALIFYING time in 3 races, including both a classic and a freestyle (skate) race.
With 6 or more competitors in an age class: a qualifying time is 10% Back of the average of the top 2nd, 3rd, & 4th finisher's times in the age group.
With 5 or less competitors in an age class a qualifying time is 10% Back of the average of the top 1st, 2nd, 3rd finisher's times in the age group.
In the U20 class (18-19 yr. old) the minimum standard will be the U18 qualifying time. U20's times will not be used in the U18 calculation.
Ties in competition: both racers receive same points. If the U18 Division has 2 or LESS athletes, it will be combined with the U20 Division and the qualifying time will be the average of the Top 2 finishers in the combined class.
Step 2: QUOTA/RANKING SELECTION: In the event that more athletes qualify than the USSA quotas allow, athletes will be RANKED and selected within U16 and U18/U20 age groups by Continental Cup Scoring technique (see scoring table below). Ranking will be calculated by taking the combined total of each athlete’s 3 best scores of the 7 JNQ's. Ties in JNQ Ranking list will be broken by USSA tie breaking procedure.
The top 5 qualified U16s and U18s shall get automatic qualification to the Far West JN Team, barring any “Coaches Discretion” selection being added to this age group (see below). There are no minimum places held for the U20 class.
The U18/U20 class quota will be filled from the JNQ ranking list without regard to age class once the minimum 5 U18's have been met.
After required minimums have been met, the number of additional age category places on the team shall be based upon the average number of racers in each age class in all 7 JNQ's.
Quota information will obviously change from race to race, and will not be officially determined until after the 3rd JN Qualifier on January 13th.
The JN Selection Committee reserves the right to not select an athlete for the team if an athlete does not meet the standards of the athletes’ code of conduct. If a selected athlete cannot attend Junior Nationals, the spot then goes to the next athlete on list. For a detailed description and examples of the Selection Process, CLICK HERE.
Far West may select athletes to the team using JN Selection Committee’s discretion. The total number of discretionary selections made by the committee shall be no more than twenty-five percent (25%) of the allowed team size.
Committee may consider any factors including (but not limited to) the following: illness, college team commitments or family emergency.
A racer who could not qualify through the above method because of conditions beyond their control (such as illness/injury, college team commitments or family emergency) may petition the Far West JN Selection Committee to attend the Junior Nationals.
The petition is limited to one typewritten page and should include 1) The reason the athlete could not meet the qualifying criteria. 2) Results from other races, which represent a standard comparable to level of the FW JN qualifying races.
Submission: Petitions must be SENT to the Far West Office (P.O. Box 10046, Truckee, CA 96162) Postmarked by FEBRUARY 14, 2014.
PETITIONS PERSONALLY HANDED TO COACHES WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED AS SUBMISSIONS!
Petitions may be E-MAILED to: firstname.lastname@example.org to arrive no later than 6 pm on MONDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2014.
Announcement of Selections:
Selections to the 2013 Junior Nationals team shall be announced on TUESDAY by 6 pm, FEBRUARY 18, 2014, and shall be published immediately upon announcement.
In order to race at Junior Nationals athletes must be current members (in good standing) of Far West Nordic and of USSA (and not any other USSA division).
JN QUALIFYING DE-MYSTIFIED
The first step to qualifying for Junior Nationals: ski in 4 and qualify in 3 of the 7 qualifiers and have a qualifying time in at least ONE SKATE and ONE CLASSIC race (see details above for how to do this.)
The second step: The United States Ski Association allows a quota of 21 men and 21 women per division to compete at the JN's (not including automatic qualifiers-see above.) Once again, Far West Nordic may have enough fast skiers who qualify that we will bump into that quota cap. So how do we decide who goes? Outlined above is how athletes will be ranked in their respective age classes. The higher you are ranked the more likely you will be chosen for the team. Because we don’t know exactly how many U16, U18, and U20 athletes we will take until all of the qualifying races are over, it can be difficult to know if you are safely high enough on the ranking list to be chosen. A minimum of 5 U16s and 5 U18's will go in each sex and the rest will be determined by how many participants have been in each age class. If you are ranked in the top 5 of U16 or U18's you are in a pretty safe place for selection. However, even this is not guaranteed because of the possibility of a “Coaches Discretionary” athlete being added to your age group.
Lets look at a few examples. Lets say there were a total of 20 male U16 athletes and 30 male U18/U20 athletes who participated in the qualifying races. This would make a ratio of 40% U16 and 60% U18/U20. SO 40% of 21 is 8 U16 athletes and 60% is 13 U18/U20 athletes. Now lets assume there are two U20 coaches discretion athletes and 1 U16. This would mean we would go down the U16 ranking list and take the top 7 athletes plus the one discretionary athlete to make 8. On the U18/U20 ranking list we would go down and take the top 5 U18's (because of the minimum requirement to take at least 5 U18's) and then we would keep going until we had reached 11 athletes from the ranking list, plus the two discretionary athletes to make 13. It all seems confusing, but the bottom line is that you need to concentrate on skiing fast in a total of three races in order to be high on the ranking list. These examples are not meant to scare anyone away from trying to qualify; quite the opposite. Far West feels that this criteria will capture those athletes who train hard and focus on making the JN team.
The Far West website will continually update the results from the qualifiers and the updated ranking lists. The Far West coaching staff will also be able to help you know how you are doing as the qualifying races progress. If you train hard and smart you can make the JN team!
photo by Olof Carmel