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Retiring racer. now what?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

I have only ever ski raced for my entire life. I'm twenty one now and can't race at college anymore so I'm a little lost. every time I went skiing before I was making hard turns getting tracks on groomers or training with my team. For spring break this year I'm going out to jackson hole and all I have are 165 atomic sl race stocks and 187 gs racetigers. I'm looking to pick up a pair of fatter skis to ease my decent at jackson and I guess for wherever else I ski from now on (primarily in the east)

 

anyone been through this? I need some reccomendations for good all mountain skis that can cover anything I see at jackson hole to mushy warm spring days in the east. of course I'll still be on my race skis a lot. I love a good sidewall construction ski and had my eye on the line sir francis bacons perhaps.

 

any input is appreciated

 

6'3"  170lbs

post #2 of 19

You'd probably really enjoy something like a Kastle MX88.  It's a do everything ski that will still perform nicely whenever you decide to lay down some GS tracks.  Personally, I still use 165 cm Atomic race stock slaloms for 90% of my skiing.  You'd be surprised how versatile they are outside of a race course.
 

post #3 of 19

For Western powder i would suggest a ski with about 100-110 mm underfoot--something with camber under foot with tip rocker will give you enough float and turn in crud and still hold a decent edge.  They will work on eastern groomers although they certainly wouldn't be your go-to skis for that. I like my K2 sidestashes.  Blizzard Cochises get great reviews (I understand they're actually flat underfoot but reviews say they hold an edge.) There are plenty of others in the same category.  I think something like the Kastle MX88 are not going to make you happy in fresh snow.  A lot of professional big mountain skiers come from race backgrounds and you don't see them skiing off piste with race stock skis. Sure--you could ski pow with skinny skis--a lot of us learned to ski fresh snow with skis a lot skinnier than your race skis, which is why we appreciate anything that makes skiing easier.   With your serious race background you obviously have good technique and I think you'll pick up powder skiing very quickly.  I don't know how big you are but you're obviously used to speed and are strong so you'll want to go fairly long--high 180's-190. 

post #4 of 19

  Or, you could go with a compromise...something say, with a 90-100 underfoot, after all, like all racers, you've got the chops to chargewink.gif!!!

 

  They have a nice float/carve combo for a strong skier (i've got the mantra and love it!! if you want more float though, you'll have to go fatter...)

post #5 of 19
Wouldn't it be grand to come west and ski only bottomless pow? Boy, I'd love that. I ski 50 days a season, all out west, and I'm lucky to get a handful of days a season with more than 4 inches of new snow, and that's usually skied out by noon. Unless you live in SLC or at a mountain that gets little traffic, there's little use in a powder specific ski or, for that matter, a ski wider than 98mm, IMHO. There's just so few days to really use it, and a narrower all mountain ski will be more versatile and fun.

With your race background, I think the Kastle MX88 mentioned above would be a great choice. It's a ski oriented towards experts with good technique, and it's a great all mountain ski.

My quiver is a Kastle MX78 and an old-style MX98. They've served Newell, including skiing 3 feet of untracked pow at Big Sku.

Mike
post #6 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by habacomike View Post

Wouldn't it be grand to come west and ski only bottomless pow? Boy, I'd love that. I ski 50 days a season, all out west, and I'm lucky to get a handful of days a season with more than 4 inches of new snow, and that's usually skied out by noon. Unless you live in SLC or at a mountain that gets little traffic, there's little use in a powder specific ski or, for that matter, a ski wider than 98mm, IMHO.

 

BINGO.  I can't help but laugh at all the chumps (ski magazine/movie 'wannabees') I see out west on +110mm skis on those 19 out of 20 days when the much better ski would be sub-90.  I have one pair of fat skis (94mm) and I didn't even bother using them last year during a season when we got record breaking snow in the Rockies.

post #7 of 19
Wut?! 110 +...sure...for a Mica heli trip.

I'm reminded of folks who ride deep dish wheels who can barely hit an 18 mph pace...but back to skiing wink.gif

Heed what Mike says. Stay below 90 on a board you can still bend with purpose outside the constraints of gates. Now go enjoy your freeski without a watch eyeballing you.
post #8 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtownskiingrulz View Post

I have only ever ski raced for my entire life. I'm twenty one now and can't race at college anymore so I'm a little lost.

 

 

You probably have a good base and if you really try, you'll figure it out.

 

Back in the 80's during one of the world cup races, we were blessed with a big 20"+ powder day that canceled the race.  We were one of the first buckets and just before the door closed, this Swedish world cup Sl racer jumped in with us.  Her first words in broken English, "show me how to ski the deep powder". 

 

Get you minds out of the gutter, this isn't Penthouse forums.  This was a big strong farm girl, that could rip the SL course, but had probably not free skied much her entire life.  We wanted to ski with her, but she totally floundered.  It wasn't the equipment, because she wasn't on that much different stuff than we were at the time.  She just used too much independent leg action and didn't have a concept of platform skiing.  After a run or two, she just said "leave me", because she knew!

 

Later in the day I saw her ripping some short shots along the side if the run.  She would stop and hit herself in the head and we just knew she would eventually "get it". But she'd just never skied this type of conditions before.

 

I would recommend you take your GS skies to Jackson and demo based on current conditions if you need too. Maybe spend a day or two at Targhee is there's some fresh.

Then spend a season or more in a ski resort and get a couple of hundred day seasons under your belt. Depending on were you end up, will determine what skis you need.

Proper equipment helps, but if you're really good, you can make do with just about anything.

post #9 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by habacomike View Post

Wouldn't it be grand to come west and ski only bottomless pow? Boy, I'd love that. I ski 50 days a season, all out west, and I'm lucky to get a handful of days a season with more than 4 inches of new snow, and that's usually skied out by noon. Unless you live in SLC or at a mountain that gets little traffic, there's little use in a powder specific ski or, for that matter, a ski wider than 98mm, IMHO. There's just so few days to really use it, and a narrower all mountain ski will be more versatile and fun.
With your race background, I think the Kastle MX88 mentioned above would be a great choice. It's a ski oriented towards experts with good technique, and it's a great all mountain ski.
My quiver is a Kastle MX78 and an old-style MX98. They've served Newell, including skiing 3 feet of untracked pow at Big Sku.
Mike

One of THE biggest misconceptions in skiing...the west is NOTHIN' but pow, brah!!roflmao.gif(if ya believe it, there's this bridge I've been meaning to sell...)

post #10 of 19
Out west is a big place. Some places it snows a lot and a nice pow stick is a thing of beauty. Others, it's relatively boney. To the OP, way back when, nearly everybody I knew who left racing took up telemark. It's an option of you want to have some fun re-learning new tricks!smile.gif
post #11 of 19

I think an ex-racer would like Volkl Mantras.

 

MX88s are fine skis as others have suggested but how many 21 year olds can afford a $1200 ski?

post #12 of 19

Me too, gave up racing about 15 yrs ago.  Replaced racing and training with skiing WITH my friends in the trees ( good slalom poles/no blocking though) instead of competing with them. Bar time end of day spent reliving the great times, turns, powder etc. rather than specifics on race technique and what so and so did on the WC today.  Planning the next road trip, cat trip or heli trip.

 

Here was/is my answer to ski question.

 

Everyday skiing (85% off piste):   180cm Blizzard Bonafide, slight rocker and very fast skis but like the crud, dodging the trees and the steeps. Last year skied these about 80% of my days on the snow (74 days).

 

Powder Ski (if over 6 inches):  Rossi S7 188, pronouced rocker, conventional camber in mid ski. Ski them in 6 inches to over knee deep heli and cat skiing.  Great powder ski.

 

Sky racing was good and I wouldn't replace those years for the competition, learning to ski and the friends I made.  However I am having a lot more fun IN the snow and ON the snow now.

post #13 of 19
Or look for a used pair of MX88s. Kastles are built really well and used skis can be a great deal over new. My MX88s probably have 75 days on them and still ski great!

Mike
Quote:
Originally Posted by hirustler View Post

I think an ex-racer would like Volkl Mantras.

MX88s are fine skis as others have suggested but how many 21 year olds can afford a $1200 ski?
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by hirustler View Post

I think an ex-racer would like Volkl Mantras.

 

MX88s are fine skis as others have suggested but how many 21 year olds can afford a $1200 ski?

I'm biased, as I own mantras (w/duke binding)...but as an occasional masters racer, I can say they rip it up (!!!!) on groomers, and in pow....providing you're a skilled pilot (they like to CHARGE!)...not the best for TRULY deep pow , though, imho. Too burly/narrow for 30",  considering the other options available nowadays...

post #15 of 19

Since you're just here for spring break and not for a season, why not just demo skis all week?

 

The shop rats here will take you under their wing and make sure you are set up and feelin' good.  Use the posts above to get a feel for the first couple of skis, but enjoy the freedom and try a few models.

 

By spring break there ought to be a few more runs open than there are now.

post #16 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpikeDog View Post

Since you're just here for spring break and not for a season, why not just demo skis all week?

 

The shop rats here will take you under their wing and make sure you are set up and feelin' good.  Use the posts above to get a feel for the first couple of skis, but enjoy the freedom and try a few models.

 

By spring break there ought to be a few more runs open than there are now.

  Good call!!

post #17 of 19
Thread Starter 

Wow thanks everyone! I'm an ace at finding used skis in great shape. (you know the ones that are given up on after two days) I bought a pair of race skis once 'used' because the previous racer 'didn't like them' 200 bucks and when I got them in the mail they didn't even have mounting holes :P

 

Can't wait to spend my days skiing instead of training, carrying coats and standing in a race suit in the dead of night at the top of mountain at <15 deg. Of course I'll still occasionally hustle a few kit races :)

 

I'm gonna go the demo route if I make it out there since it's $100 to put my skis on the plane anyway.

post #18 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtownskiingrulz View Post

Wow thanks everyone! I'm an ace at finding used skis in great shape. (you know the ones that are given up on after two days) I bought a pair of race skis once 'used' because the previous racer 'didn't like them' 200 bucks and when I got them in the mail they didn't even have mounting holes :P

 

Can't wait to spend my days skiing instead of training, carrying coats and standing in a race suit in the dead of night at the top of mountain at <15 deg. Of course I'll still occasionally hustle a few kit races :)

 

I'm gonna go the demo route if I make it out there since it's $100 to put my skis on the plane anyway.

  Speaking of skiing and not training/racing...I've been to schweitzer 8 times and I can only name runroflmao.gif

post #19 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtownskiingrulz View Post

Wow thanks everyone! I'm an ace at finding used skis in great shape. (you know the ones that are given up on after two days) I bought a pair of race skis once 'used' because the previous racer 'didn't like them' 200 bucks and when I got them in the mail they didn't even have mounting holes :P

 

Can't wait to spend my days skiing instead of training, carrying coats and standing in a race suit in the dead of night at the top of mountain at <15 deg. Of course I'll still occasionally hustle a few kit races :)

 

I'm gonna go the demo route if I make it out there since it's $100 to put my skis on the plane anyway.

Glad you mentioned the coats etc., sure don't miss carrying all that bamboo and then breakaways had to horse around the hill.  The demo route will be fun, there are some great ski's out there. Have fun.

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