Welcome to Far West Nordic!

Welcome to our Year 2002 edition of Nordic News from the Far West Nordic Ski Education Association. As this issue is going to print, the Sierra Nevada has been blessed with some of the finest early season snow we’ve experienced in recent memory. Whether this translates into great skiing for the entire season, only time will tell. But after skiing on rock skis and thin ice during the past few Decembers, the deep snow base and high quality of ski conditions is making it difficult to stay inside and write when there are so many k’s of track just waiting to be skied on.

Once again, we invite you to join the Far West Nordic Ski Education Association, and be an integral part of the finest sport in the world. Your membership is important to continue our Junior Nordic Programs, and helps us “promote the sport of cross country skiing in our part of the world.” We provide opportunities for athlete skill development, provide coaches’ education, endorse Junior, Senior, and Master regional competition teams, and promote cross country ski racing.

Become a Far West Nordic member and enjoy the many benefits of membership, including entry to the Sierra Ski Chase, discounts at participating ski areas (see below), regular newsletters, and more. And don’t forget to log onto our always updated website at www.farwestnordic.org for the latest conditions and race results. And don’t forget to get out there and enjoy all that great skiing!

Mark Nadell
Editor, Far West Nordic News


NORDIC LOVE...

by Scott Sutherland

This humorous journey through an all-too-typical winter for many skiers has been contributed by Scott Sutherland as an exclusive to www.xcskiworld.com. Many thanks to Scott and good luck in his continuing treatment.

“Nordic skiing is a very healthy and passionate sport, which by its very nature, however, may engender risks that any skier must be aware of and acknowledge.”
— Hang-tag copy for Salomon ski boots

November 15

Dearest Nordic Skiing —
How I have missed you these many months! The weatherman says snow is imminent — I am feverish with anticipation. I have laid out the implements of my affection — skis, waxing iron, stretchy one-piece racing suit — so that we may soon reconsummate our treasured bond. O, do not let me wait! You provoke in me a hunger no energy replacement bar can satisfy.

Yours in longing — S

November 20

My Precious Love —
The weatherman, curse him, was wrong again — no snow, temperatures in the sixties. But I maintain my vigil! My love for you is as tenacious as the old klister smeared across the bottom of my wax box.

Pining, ever pining — S

December 11

Obscure Object of My Desire —
My prayers are answered! All night and all day it has snowed! Tomorrow is the weekend, and I shall be with you once again — how my pulse rate soars! My skis are waxed and structured for new, hard-packed snow, and my racing suit shows off the muscles I have kept toned for you. We shall crush each other in our impassioned embrace.

Hyperventilating uncontrollably — S

December 14

Love, Love Me Do —
How can I describe the bliss of the past two days? Cold, clear mornings, my skis cutting long, clean V’s in the corduroy surface of the skating track, the sweet ache in my muscles and lungs — would we could be together always! I am of a mind to follow you anywhere — perhaps I will relocate to Baffin Island, or maybe Lapland.

Your skiing spaniel — Scottums

January 9

Precious Snugglepoo —
The past three weeks have been a fever-dream of happiness! Every day, kilometer after kilometer, through woods and meadows, I swoon in your embrace. You are so healthy, so passionate — despite, of course, the obvious risks you engender — that it grieves me to be away from you for even a moment. If the worst should come of the current thaw and we must part, let it not be for long. May that zone of high pressure forming over Hudson Bay dip down below the 45th parallel, bringing with it a blast of arctic air that would stabilize the tracks into a fast frozen granular so that I may forever be...

Your humble servant — S

January 17

My Sweet One —
Alas, the worst has come — the thaw has devoured the last of the precious snow, and I must content myself with sit-ups and my Vegard Ulvang highlight videos. Do not despair — we will be rejoined at the next snow.

I only have abs for you — S

February 6

Darling —
My vigil continues — a couple of meager spits of sleet, but no snow. O, why must snow’s downy caprice come between us? Is our bond so fragile? Forgive me — I teeter on the brink of despair. I have spent days whining pitiably to my favorite Norse gods — mighty Odin, god of wisdom, and nimble Ullr, wicked good skier — that they grant me the strength of carbon fiber that I may weather this trial like water off the back of a big nasty woodchuck. Let us pray that these excellent Norse deities see fit to intervene, and pronto.

Trying not to lose it big time — S

February 21

Love —
Don’t do this. Please. I beg of you. I didn’t mean to question the Kevlar-like durability of our treasured bond — coat my tongue with molten Swix violet and scour it with a riller if I’m lying. There’ll be snow any day now, I can feel it.

See you soon? S

March 9

N.S. —
Hope this finds you well. Know what month it is? March. How about that? AND I HAVEN’T BEEN ON MY FREAKING SKIS IN TWO MONTHS! WHERE ARE YOU? WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME? I’m sorry; I’m not myself. AND WHO WOULD BE?! I TRAIN LIKE A WOMBAT MONTH AFTER MONTH FOR YOU, AND THIS IS HOW YOU THANK ME?! YOU THINK I HAVEN’T DREAMT OF TAKING UP WITH CANDLEPIN BOWLING?!! Please forgive me — all the waiting, all the worrying, all those millions of sit-ups — I had such hopes for us this season — BUT NO, YOU HAD TO TOY WITH ME A LITTLE BEFORE YOU RIPPED MY HEART OUT AND SPLIT TOWN, DIDN’T YOU?! In all fairness, my friends said you engendered risks — BUT THE HELL WITH THAT! WE’RE THROUGH! DON’T COME BACK, AND DON’T CALL! AND WHILE YOU’RE AT IT, ENGENDER THIS, PUMPKIN!
--S

March 12

My Dear Nordic — I admit I feel a tad foolish re: my last missive — especially in light
of the two feet of new snow that has fallen overnight — but I think we’ve both said and done things we wish we could take back. Shall we meet on the trail and let bygones be bygones? The season is still young; hope flutters within me like the neon-green tassel affixed to my obnoxious new Eurocool racing cap.

Workin’ my way back to you, babe — S

March 24

Sepulchral Plague Upon My Soul —
The snow was beautiful, wasn’t it? How we danced across it, you and I,
for a glorious week. Then the snow left. Then you left. Again. Where
did you fly to this time, my dear? Into the waiting arms of some skanky
Swede or Finn or Alaskan, is my guess. This is it for us. You’ve
eviscerated me for the last time.

Have a nice life. S
P.S. I faked all the heavy breathing on the uphills.

April 21

Occupant —
This is just to say that I have sold the lot of my nordic gear — skis, waxing irons, Vegard Ulvang highlight videos, even that fabulous pin-up calendar of the Canadian women’s nordic team — and taken up street luging. Forgive me; to unload all that garbage and pursue a real sport felt so sweet, so good. Thought you might want to know.

Thank god almighty, I’m free at last — S

POSTSCRIPT: THE FOLLOWING FALL

Nov. 22

Dear Nordic —
Can’t help thinking about you every time the snow flies, like it’s doing now. I know I said a lot of stuff last spring, but still — what do you say? Want to give it one more try?

Just the two of us, we can make it if we try — S


Don't Be Stupid: Go To School!

by Marcus Nash

I recently went skiing with some Far West juniors and was surprised at some of the questions they asked me during our ski. Nick Sterling, a promising high school junior from Truckee, asked me my view regarding skiing after high school and if he should go to University or focus solely on ski racing. As it turns out there are many young skiers who are struggling with this issue and don’t know where to turn. Even worse is the fact that there are coaches persuading young athletes that University is the end to a promising ski career. I strongly disagree with this and say to anyone who is thinking of postponing their studying; don’t be stupid, go to school.

The most overwhelming argument in favor of going to school is the fact that good young skiers don’t always become great World Cup skiers. The average age of the top thirty skiers in the World is twenty-nine years of age. Many of those skiers did not even compete on the World Cup level until they were twenty-five years old. They mainly competed for their clubs while working or going to school. Many of these athletes worked or studied full time. There will always be exceptions. Thomas Alsgaard and Per Elofsson are the only two that I can think of. I can however name many skiers who were top juniors who are struggling on the World Cup. Martin Koukal, of the Czech Republic and Axel Tiechman, of Germany were both Junior World Champions in 1998 and 1999 respectively. These athletes struggle to place in the top thirty in World Cup races and often finish outside the top fifty.

If you look at the Norwegian training system you will find that they put very little emphasis on the Junior World Championships, yet have dominated the World Cup for ten years with skiers who did poorly or did not even compete at the Junior World Championships. Bjorn Daehlie did not place in the top twenty at Junior Worlds. What the Norwegians have figured out is how to keep their skiers training well from age twenty to twenty-five and that is why they dominate. Skiers like Espen Bjervig and Odd-Bjorn Helmesset, did not emerge as top skiers until they were twenty-five or older.

During my tenure with the US Ski Team I have seen the administration place far too much emphasis on juniors often at the expense of talented young seniors. Most of these juniors fell by the wayside and the focus and money went to the next crop of junior “superstars.” The only way to get support from the US Ski Team was to fight your way to the top as a senior as quickly as possible before they could pull the rug out from underneath you. If you look at the top skiers currently in the United States you will find that most of them graduated from college. This may be attributed to the fact that there was no development program to speak of when most of us where juniors or young seniors. That is another story altogether.

What I suggest to a high school skier is go to college and train hard while you are there. The college circuit provides the best level of racing in the country and brings good European skiers to compete against. Go to a school that has some good foreign skiers and learn from them. That is what I did and it helped me more than any other resource available. If you don’t believe me then ask my former teammate at the University of Utah, Havaard Solbakken. He won the bronze medal in the World Championship Sprint this year in Lahti. Another teammate at Utah, Ine Wiegernas has placed in the top twenty several times during the past two World Cup seasons. The winner of this year's Vasaloppet competed for the University of Colorado last season. Katerina Hanusova, three time NCAA champion at University of Nevada, Reno was eighteenth at the World Cup in Soldier Hollow. She had the ninth fastest skate leg in the women's pursuit while being a full-time student.

Not all schools have good foreign skiers, but there are many Universities with good coaches and a great training environment. The most important thing to focus on is choosing a school that will help you reach your goals. Combining college and training is difficult but if you don’t have the dedication to combine both then you probably don’t have the work ethic to be a top skier anyway. The worst that can happen is you get a college degree and have a lot of fun doing it. The trick is to stay focused on training and use those four years to develop a base of great training. My goal at Utah was to ski well enough to not only make the World Championship and Olympic Teams, but to go straight on to the US Ski Team when I graduated.

The best part is that a bad race doesn’t seem so bad if you have that University diploma in your back pocket. I challenge the top US juniors to do this and if you are as good as you think you are then you will have no problem. You will be NCAA Champion, the US Team will be asking you to join them and your parents will be more willing to see you leave college a year or two early in pursuit of that elusive Olympic medal.

This article written by U.S. Ski Team and Fischer / Salomon Athlete Force Member (and Far West Nordic skier) Marcus Nash. It is brought to you by SkiPost, your source for cross-county knowledge. If you have any questions or know someone you would like to subscribe to SkiPost please e-mailto: weanswer@skipost.com


Classic Skiing

by Jeff Schloss

I started classic skiing in the early 1980s, before skating hit the sport. Unfortunately for my skiing, I wasn’t yet a very proficient strider when I first heard of skating in 1983, and decided to go whole hog into this new form of skiing. I pretty much skated exclusively until about ’89, when I realized I missed the old kick and glide. So I dug out my ancient classic skis and started trying to learn how to really do it right — and now, 12 or 13 years later, I am still trying to get it “dialed-in.“

The point is that to do classic skiing correctly is darn hard, and even harder for those of us who only skated for many years. But there is hope, because classic skiing is built on the same foundations as skating, so with some practice and patience we can all feel the beauty of skiing’s traditional technique. I have outlined a progression here that will help classic skiers of all abilities improve their technique. An interesting fact I have discovered after many years of teaching skiing and coaching top racers is that the progressions and drills that the top racers use are the very same progressions that work the best for less advanced skiers. I have also witnessed that doing lots of classic skiing really helps people improve their skating as well. So this winter it’s time to discover, or rediscover, the joys of classic skiing.

ATHLETIC STANCE
This is the foundation of all good skiing and should be practiced in dryland training and on skis. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, flex your ankles and knees, and press your hips forward as you flex. Keep your hips level and your body slightly forward but not bent at the waist, and the back should be rounded. Now try jumping in the air and landing in this position. You may find that jumping and landing gives you more flex and suppleness in the knees and ankles-this is what you want.

ARM SWING
Without going anywhere get in your athletic stance and now swing your arms forward and backwards, concentrating on long range of motion and relaxation. Your hand should swing forward as if you were throwing a cup of water down the track in front of you, and then should continue just as far behind you. You should feel your arm moving in the shoulder socket and your hands should come up no higher than face level. Really concentrate on long, relaxed movements. Most classic skiers ski with far too tight of shoulders and arms. Do this arm swinging for 2-5 minutes as part of your warm up before each classic session. It may sound like a simple drill but it can really improve your skiing. I have one junior I coach who used to be so tight in his shoulders when he classic skied that he looked like the Hunchback of Notre Dame! He has religiously done this arm swing drill and we have seen noticeable improvements in his skiing and race results.

KICK
Now standing stationary on one ski in a diagonal stride position (left ski forward, right arm forward) practice getting a snappy, quick, kick. Pretend there is a bug under your ski and you want to quickly squash it. The kick in classic is very fast and short, so quickly squash the bug feeling the weight on your whole foot, not just the ball. After you have done 10 or so quick squashes on each foot you are ready for the next step. Now squash the bug while driving the rear ski forward at the same time. You should feel the rear leg driving forward from the hip and knee while the kicking leg is doing its snappy kick. You are still staying stationary while doing this. After you have the hang of this it is time to start actually skiing without your poles.

GLIDING
Start in your athletic stance and begin skiing very easy with out much energy. Keep your good body position with supple ankles and knees, and really swing the arms with lots of range and relaxation. Even though we are skiing easy, the kick should be quick, snappy, and straight down into the snow with the whole foot. The non-kicking foot is driving forward with nice relaxation and long range of motion just like the arms. Think of the rear leg as a pendulum that is swinging forward from the hip and driving you down the track. Ski on flat or very gradual uphills working on these things without putting too much energy in. Constantly check to see if you are keeping a good body position, fairly upright, not bent at the waist, and flexing at the ankles and knees. After this feels good it is now time to add some energy.

POWER
Now we want to add some more ummph to the motion. However only do this when you feel very comfortable skiing with energy. Also at this stage if ever you start to get sloppy go back to skiing without energy and get your form back. To add power we need to keep the kick short and quick but now we can pop it a little harder and we can feel the non-kicking ski driving forward with more power. A great deal of the power of the kick comes from the pendulum motion of the rear skiing driving forward down the track. The hips should be forward, lose, and slightly rotating over each new gliding ski. If you are getting on an uphill you need to flex more at the ankles in order to maintain your forward body position. The arms should be swing quickly and far forward and back, while maintaining relaxed shoulders. The eyes should be looking a little bit in front of you and you should be thinking about all of the energy of the arms and legs to be driving you straight down the track. If your arms are crossing in front of your chest or are out to the side of your hips then you are not getting all of your energy going in the direction of travel.

DRILL, DRILL, DRILL
I feel that skiing without your poles is the most important thing you can do to improve your classic skiing. Especially in the early season I would spend 15-20 minutes every time you classic ski working without your poles. Make sure that the terrain you choose is easy; flat with some very gradual uphills is ideal. It is not good for your technique to be flailing up a too steep hill with skis slipping and heart rate going through the roof.

POLES
When you do add the poles try to keep the same good body position, relaxed arm swing, and quick snappy kick that you had without poles. When the pole lands the basket should land about even with the opposite foot and the pole should be angled back, propelling you down the track. Also the poles should stay parallel to the body and pass right next to the hip as they push.

These simple drills will do wonders in helping you kick up steeper hills, and glide longer in the flats. And when you are out on a cold morning when the wax is perfect you may just find yourself flying right by someone on skating skis, and I bet you will be grinning.


Profile:
JEFF SCHLOSS

By Nancy Humphrey Case

The kids he coaches—ASC’s Competition and Development Teams—know that Jeff’s last job was coach of the competitive UNR team. What they may not know is that he never had a ski coach himself. He was twenty-two before he put on a pair of skinny skis, having grown up in the Bay Area and attended college in Santa Barbara. But he was a competitive swimmer from an early age and later an endurance runner.

Not long after he started skiing, Jeff began competing in citizens’ races, and he is still racing. Last year he placed 9th at World Masters in the 45k skate race. Jeff feels this racing background is an advantage in his coaching. “I know what the kids are going through,” he says.

Another asset is the sheer numbers of athletes he has coached in his years with Truckee High School (1988 – 1993) and UNR (1993 – 2000). “I’ve coached a lot of different athletes,” he observes, “and I’ve learned from every one I’ve worked with. I’ve learned how individual each athlete is.”

Schloss is modest about his achievements, but they are remarkable. When he started at UNR, the cross-country team consisted of a few Finnish kids. “I had to build respectability before I could attract good athletes,” he remembers. And beginning with Tav Streit (a former Alpine skier), he did. The last two years he coached the UNR team, five of his athletes placed in the top twenty at the NCAA championships.

Does Jeff miss coaching a strong collegiate team? Apparently not much. He finds coaching younger kids “super exciting—because there’s more of a chance to make an impact,” as he puts it. I asked Jeff what percentage of good coaching is technical expertise and what percentage is the ability to understand and motivate athletes. “Both are very important,” he answers. He feels that on the technical side he is learning from Nancy Fiddler and Glenn Jobe, who have been coaching the Far West JO’s teams for several years.

He really enjoys the “team approach” to coaching at ASC, which overlaps with the Far West juniors programs. “There are a lot of people working toward the same goal, right down to Super Sliders,” Jeff remarks. “That’s the biggest thing I enjoy about ASC vs. UNR, where I was working by myself.” Glenn Jobe is thrilled to have Schloss on the team. “I can’t say enough positive things about Jeff and what he’s doing for Far West,” he says. “He’s bringing a whole new level of enthusiasm and experience to the (juniors) program that the program was ready for.”

Sally Jones, ASC’s Nordic Director, is equally happy with the arrangement. “I couldn’t have asked for a better coach to jump into the program,” she says. Dubbing Jeff “the fun-meister”, Sally observes that Jeff has experience coaching top level college athletes, but that he also understands the teenage side of athletics—the social as well as the competitive side. “He’s got a grasp on kids,” she concludes.

This rapport with kids is, perhaps, the greatest strength Schloss brings to his new role. Knowing the athletes, understanding their needs, and motivating them, is what he feels he is best at. And how does he motivate them? “I listen to them, talk to them, find out what it is that they care about,” he replies. “A lot of times we superimpose our values or goals on kids. I try to find out where their passion is, what their goals are.” Recognizing that there are many different levels of motivation, commitment, and talent among athletes, Jeff has shaped for himself an uncommon model of success. “It’s easy to get caught up in defining success as medals at JO’s. That’s not the way I want to measure success,” he says. “I want to measure it by the athletes getting what they want out of the sport. Not every athlete has the talent to medal at JO’s, but he may just enjoy coming out, getting better, and getting what he (or she) wants out of it.”

It’s very important to Jeff that every athlete in that spectrum feels welcome, a part of the team, and valued. Does this approach translate into increased motivation? Jeff thinks it does. “One of the biggest secrets, but the simplest thing about coaching,” he says, “is being there for the athlete—so they know someone cares.” He wants his kids to know that he is watching what they’re doing, paying attention not only to the best athletes, but to every one. So far this approach is bringing out the best in the athletes on the Comp and Development Teams. “The whole summer training went really well,” Jeff says. “I couldn’t believe how consistent and dedicated the kids were.” And what do these kids say about Jeff?

He really cares about what we’re doing.”
“He’s really personal with you. He talks to you and asks how you’re feeling on a particular day.”
“He’s really compromising to everyone’s needs. He makes it work for everyone.”
“He has a lot of energy for all the athletes.”
“He’s really encouraging.”
“He makes us work really hard.”
“He goes out of his way to make it fun.”

A good example of that last comment is a weekend trip Jeff led in October. To lighten up the rigorous fall training, Jeff took a group of kids to Yosemite, where they hiked up Half Dome and roller-skied through the park. If all this makes you wish you were a kid again, take heart. Both Jeff and Sally hope eventually to expand his coaching role into ASC Seniors and Masters programs as well.


Springloppet 2002

The West’s Most Challenging XC Circuit

Last year’s inaugural Springloppet Five Series was a great success and achieved the goal of increased skier participation. The series was won overall by David Stover in the men’s division, and Laura Stern for the women, and the skiers who were hardy enough to complete all five races and those participants who completed four races received a TOKO hat and prizes in the raffle drawing.

Are you looking for a new goal this year? The “Springloppet Challenge” is a series of five springtime cross country ski races. This series offers some of the finest ski racing in the West with a variety of terrain and wonderful Sierra spring snow conditions. There will be prizes to all the citizen racers who complete all five races in 2002. There will also be awards to the top male/female overall who wins the most races of the series. In addition, each of the participating resorts will donate daily ski passes which will be given away, together with other prizes, at a drawing at the end of the series. Everyone who has completed at least four of the races will be entered in the drawing for the prizes generously donated by sponsors of this series.

New this year is www.springloppet.com. The purpose of the site is to allow skiers to register as a “Springloppet Challenger,” and the site will provide a current view of the standings throughout the season. We encourage you to sign-on even if you are not sure how many of the races you will be skiing as there is no cost to register. This website is for tracking results only, and a reminder that actual race entry must be done through the normal channels at the respective participating x-c area.

The first race begins with the 30 K Great Ski Race on Sunday, March 3. This event is truly a happening with as many as 700 people of all abilities, from world class U.S. ski team skiers to back-country telemarkers come out to take part. Not only is this race a primary fund raiser for Search and Rescue, it is a fun course with as much down as up and has the very best party at the end with hot food , live music and dancing (for those who still have the energy). This is the biggest x-c race in the western U. S. and one not to be missed.

The second race is the Bear Valley Bjornloppet 20K freestyle on Saturday, March 9. A fabulous course, not too hard, and loads of fun. Paul Petersen, Director of Bear Valley Cross Country, puts a huge effort into making this a great racing weekend, followed by yet another post race party with wonderful food and always tons of prizes. Although not part of this series, there is a 10K classic race the following day.

Then comes the Gold Rush 50K /Silver Rush 25K at Royal Gorge on Sunday, March 17. Combined efforts by Royal Gorge, Auburn Ski Club and members of the Far West Ski Association create a first class event all weekend long. This race always attracts some of the biggest names in the sport, and again, is a fund raiser for Far West Junior’s Nordic Racing program which has done so much to promote the sport to the younger generation. The race now begins at 8:00 a.m. which has generally made conditions very fast. Participation in either the Gold or Rush will count toward the five series. This year’s Silver Rush will also be a part of the 2002 Masters Nationals which adds extra excitement to this great venue.

Race number four is the Echo to Kirkwood Race/Tour on Saturday, March 23. This 13 mile race/tour has a long history and there is no where else where you can get such a back-country experience in a race. The scenery is gorgeous and for those who have never done this race, it is a must! Bring skins along for the first climb and then enjoy a series of rolling hills through beautiful back-country before enjoying the well groomed downhill to the finish. People of all abilities will challenge themselves in this race/tour, and the Search and Rescue folks provide great aid stations along the way with hot soup and other treats. You can usually count on good weather, lots of prizes and a beer keg at the end!

Finally, Mammoth Marathon 42 K and Half Marathon 21K on Sunday, March 31. This is definitely one of the most scenic races on the circuit, the very first race being won by Audun Endestad back in 1978. This race starts early and takes advantage of fast snow and great corn conditions. Former Olympian Nancy Fiddler, together with her staff, put on an event with some of the best spring skiing around. The finale party with delicious catered food and plenty of great prizes will provide the wrap-up to this series.

Visit the new website www.springloppet.com for more information and we look forward to seeing you at the races. Good luck! Flyers on the Springloppet Challenge will be available soon at all of the participating XC ski resorts.


Sierra Ski Chase

Criteria and Points

This low key racing series is going into its 11th season. We thank our past sponsors Fischer Skis & Lowe Alpine, Dr. Wm. Krissoff, Orthopedic Surgeon, Mr. Richard Bozzio, Pro Care Physical Therapy Services, and Sierra Nordic. Com, who helped us together with Far West Nordic Ski Education Association to sponsor the long-sleeve tee-shirts and all the great products that went into our raffle. We are excited to welcome our new sponsor Native Eyewear. These sponsors enhance our racing series and we greatly appreciate their support. We would also like to recognize all the wonderful nordic centers in the Far West Region, without their efforts we wouldn’t have a Sierra Ski Chase.

Everybody is welcome to enter the Sierra Ski Chase. It is free to valid FW members (only $20/$35 per year). All prizes donated by our sponsors will go into the raffle and in that way everyone who completes the series can be a potential winner. The top man and woman will have their names inscribed on the SIERRA SKI CHASE PERPETUAL TROPHY at Auburn Ski Club.

Ski Chase participants from Mammoth and Bear Valley may have up to 2 races in their own area count as a straight points race to fulfill Sierra Ski Chase Criteria as long as they send a result sheet with their names underlined to Far West. At the same time our local racers may have 2 out-of-the-area Far West races count.

This March 2002 Tahoe City XC will be hosting the “Masters Nationals Competition” and all individual races count as qualifying races with 10 straight points. We selected 12 races, you only have to complete a minimum of 5 races. Age handicap points will be given to the best 5 races per participant, that means 1 point will be added per year over age 34. Everybody will receive 10 points for finishing a race plus placing points. After you fulfill your requirement of 5 races, each additional race will be worth 10 points. The Gold/Silver/Bronze Rush, the Tahoe Donner Relays, and all pursuit races (count only 1result) will be scored with 10 points, no age or finishing points, because of the nature of the races. Races with 40 participants or less will be scored with 10 points across the board, no age or finishing points.

As always, the end of the Ski Chase, the raffle and handing out of tee-shirts to successful participants will co-incide with the Gold Rush Party at ASC. Please check out Far West’s web site for more information: www.farwestnordic.org.
Sign-ups will be taken at the first 4 races. Please see me: Helga Sable.

December 2 Kirkwood XC Kirkwood 10K 10 kilometers Freestyle
December 16 Auburn Ski Club Far West Pursuit 5 km. Classic/5 km. Freestyle
December 23 Auburn Ski Club Paco’s Fun Race 10 kilometers Freestyle
December 30 Auburn Ski Club Snowshoe Thompson Classic 10 kilometers Classic
January 13 Tahoe XC Alpenglow 20K 20 kilometers Freestyle
January 21 Tahoe Donner Sierra Skogsloppet 15 kilometers Freestyle
January 27 Northstar Sawmill Race 15 kilometers Freestyle
February 3 Tahoe XC Tahoe City Classic 10 kilometers Classic
February 10 Kirkwood XC Kirkwood Pursuit 10 km. Classic/10 km. Free
February 18 Tahoe Donner Presidents Cup Race 15 kilometers Freestyle
February 24 Tahoe Donner TDXC Relays 3 Person Relay (1 leg classic)
March 12 Tahoe XC Masters Nationals 10 km. Classic
March 14 Tahoe XC Masters Nationals Pursuit Race
March 15 Tahoe XC Masters Nationals Sprint Relays
March 17 Royal Gorge California Gold Rush 50/30/15 kilometers Freestyle

Placing points:

Women:

top 20 = 5 points

top 15 = 10 points

top 10 = 25 points

top 5 = 35 points

top 2 = 40 points

Men:

top 40 = 10 points

top 30 = 20 points

top 20 = 30 points

top 15 = 35 points

top 10 = 40 points

top 3 = 45 points


Far West Senior & Masters Team Selection Criteria

Senior 20-29 and Masters age 30 and over may be named to the Far West Team. The top skier in each age group is named to the Far West Team. Candidates must be citizen racers; members of a National Team are not eligible. Skiers must be 2001-2002 Far West Nordic members by Jan 15, 2002 and must complete a minimum of six of the qualifying races, one of which must be a classic race. Up to 9 (nine) races count toward a point total. If there are two skiers who are consistently close in both results and points, both will be named to the team. Masters who place at the Masters Nationals or Masters World Cup in individual races and who also do a minimum of 4 Far West races will be named to the Masters Team. In the Far West Division, Master's classes are separated in five year increments starting at age 30.

December 23 Auburn Ski Club Paco’s Fun Race 10 kilometers Freestyle
December 30 Auburn Ski Club Snowshoe Thompson 10 kilometers Classic
January 13 Tahoe XC Alpenglow Freestyle 20 kilometers Freestyle
January 21 Tahoe Donner Sierra Skiopgsloppet 15 kilometers Freestyle
January 26 Montecito-Sequoia Chimney Rock Challenge 15 km. Classic
January 27 Northstar Sawmill Race 15 kilometers Freestyle
February 3 Tahoe XC Tahoe City Classic 10 km. Classic
February 10 Kirkwood XC Kirkwood Pursuit 10 km. Classic/10 km. Free
February 18 Tahoe Donner Presidents Cup Race 15 kilometers Freestyle
February 23 Yosemite Yosemite Nordic Holiday 17 kilometers Classic
March 10 Bear Valley XC Bjornloppet 10 kilometers Classic
March 17 Royal Gorge Gold/Silver/Bronze Rush 50/30 /15 kilometers Freestyle
March 31 Tamarack Lakes XC Mammoth Marathon 42 or 21 kilometers Freestyle


The Ted Beauchamp Scholarship Fund

The sport of cross country ski racing is not known for having lots of financial opportunities to help offset the cost of participating. However, there are some scholarships available, and a good one that young ski racers in the Far West division should be aware of is the Ted Beauchamp Scholarship. This fund was established by the Far West Nordic Ski Association, in conjunction with the Beauchamp family, to award scholarships each year to junior or senior XC ski racers who are dedicated to the sport. The scholarship seeks to help young skiers who show a passion for skiing, have an interest in skiing at a national level, have a character that Far West can be proud of, and may have some financial need.

The fund is in memorial of Ted Beauchamp, who was a dedicated member of the Far West Ski Association Board of Directors, and was a long time mentor to kids regarding skiing and other outdoor pursuits. The Beauchamp family and the Far West Board feel that this scholarship to help young ski racers is a great way to remember our departed friend.

The first recipient of this Scholarship went to Scott Hill of Carnelian Bay who received 300 dollars. Scott used the money to help fund his trip to race in the Junior Scandinavian Cup race in Sweden last year. Far West commits a minimum of 300 dollars each year to this fund plus whatever additional money we raise through contributions and items sold at the Beauchamp table at the Far West Raffle. Awarded funds can be used for anything to help with an athletes skiing.

If you know a young athlete you would like to nominate for this award please send a brief letter introducing the candidate to FWNSEA, BOX 10046, TRUCKEE CA. 96162

Contributions to the Beauchamp Scholarship fund are tax deductible and can be sent to the above address.