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Cochise Kicked My A$$...

post #1 of 86
Thread Starter 

Otherwise know as: desperate plea for advise.  I thought I knew what I was doing when I traded my couple year old Gotamas for a pair of Cochises, turns out, not so much.  Less rocker and added metal left me, an, arguably, advancing intermediate skier, hurting on the "low" snow and tight terrain of Snowbird and Alta last weekend.  I got by okay on groomed to slightly cut up, but bumps and tighter terrain were killing me.  Please recommend something that will help me improve my game at big mountain resorts, ESPECIALLY with regard to the time between storms and with regard to bumps and tighter terrain.  This is to say less priority on groomers and open bowls.  Think Gad Valley or the trees off of Wildcat, or under Thunder or Sublette in Jackson Hole.  You get the idea.  Having said all this, I realize the role of technique and I hereby promise to continue to seek out professional advise on getting better.  As a matter of fact, I'm going to JH for steep and deep camp next month.  Just give me a little something to help me bridge the gap.  smile.gif

 

Real quick:

 

Me- 43 (male), 5'10, 175, reasonably athletic (not couch potato).  Skiing for 6 years, getting to be okay with a lot of money spent on trips and lessons.

 

Skis (for this context): the Gotamas were 186 and worked, I think, because of flex and rocker.  The Cochises are 185 and a handful due to less rocker and metal.  I briefly demoed the Rossignol S3 (178) which I liked a lot in the tight stuff, less on groomers (as would be expected, I suppose) and the Atomic Alibi (173) which I liked on groomers and could probably grow into on the off trail, it's a stiffer ski with less rocker.

 

What should I be looking for in a ski that fits these parameters?  Any other suggestions, or will the S3 do the trick?

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 86
Bushwacker! No metal, playful as all get out and does just about everything you want the ski to do conditions wise.
post #3 of 86

Might start here:

 

http://starthaus.com/wordpress/2012/12/31/big-mountain-ski-comparison-the-mid-fat-grudge-match/

 

then read here:

 

http://starthaus.com/wordpress/2012/12/20/all-mountain-ski-showdown-the-big-comparisson/

 

Cochise is pretty easy to pivot around and I find it does this best from the middle of the ski (which i had to learn to do).  My $0.02

post #4 of 86

So are you looking for something as wide as the Cochise or narrower?  That makes a world of difference in what anyone recommends.  It doesn't help you any if I recommend a 90mm ski and you want a 105-110mm ski.  

post #5 of 86

Hi - So assume you are committed to replace rather than live with? If so, the fact that you like the S3, and your size, suggests that you might also enjoy skis like the Elan 999, Atomic Theory, Armada TST, Fischer Big Stix 98, or Blizzard Kabookie. Suggest you look up reviews here at Member's Gear Reviews, they can have very informative threads that go back, forth, sideways. I think the Elans, Armadas, Kabookies, and Fischers have been reviewed, cannot recall about Theories, but a very popular ski. Also keep in mind that you cannot have it all, so by finding a ski that's nice in chop, bumps and tight places, you may be giving up some float and/or stability on hardpack. Just is what it is. IMO the Cochise ain't a first choice for bumps and trees, but then I can't think of any 105+ ski that would be. 

 

Another approach would be to keep the Cochises - which are a nearly universally appreciated ski, so yeah, may be archer, not arrow - as your charging ski, and get something in the high 80's for trees, bumps and such. Depends on whether you want to take two skis on a trip or not, I guess. If you go that route, also a lot of good choices, but the Rossi E88 and Blizzard Bushwacker kinda jump out.

post #6 of 86
Thread Starter 

Sorry, more details.  95 to about 105mm I suppose is what I was looking at.  My goal ultimate goal is a two ski quiver for traveling to the resorts I mentioned or similar.  Imagine buying a Mountain Collective pass every year and picking two spots.  One ski for most days, and one for storms and the immediate aftermath (I have been trying to get buy with one ski for trips).  I'm also looking closely at another thread on quivers and does 107mm or so really have a place.  So, I have some thinking to do regarding the Cochise.

 

Other skis I've considered, on paper, are something from the Salomon Rocker2 line and the 4frnt Cody, which is billed as a ski for less than ideal conditions.

 

Thanks for the replies and I'll look at those links.


Edited by FreddyG - 1/23/13 at 1:21pm
post #7 of 86

I did not like the Cochise either when I tried it. Keep on skiing different models of skis until you find 

that you can't live without. Jackson Hole would be great place to make the big decision.

post #8 of 86

I am similar to your situation - travel to ski - out west and own a MC Pass along with others.  Im about 10 lbs heavier and own Cochise and Legend 94 - but I like metal in my skis.  You should read the Blistergear review and pay attention to the de-tune comments.  Ski it again and then decide.  BTW if I had it to do over - I would still have the Cochise but maybe the MX88 instead for the L94.  YMMV.

post #9 of 86

Please recommend something that will help me improve my game at big mountain resorts, ESPECIALLY with regard to the time between storms and with regard to bumps and tighter terrain.  This is to say less priority on groomers and open bowls.  Think Gad Valley or the trees off of Wildcat, or under Thunder or Sublette in Jackson Hole.

 

Just my opinion, of course, but I'm not surprised that you didn't have that great an experience on a 100mm+ ski in tight and steep quarters in a low-snow environment at Alta or Snowbird.  To me, that "low-snow" moniker translates into relatively hard and relatively big moguls.  Wide skis are simply more work (again, in my opinion) than narrower skis when you're schlepping around in moguls.

 

We're having exactly the same conditions right now here in Jackson Hole and I'm finding that something around 80mm is a heckuva lot more fun in tight bumps and narrow quarters than wide skis.  I'm skiing the Rossignol Pursuit HP and loving it.  When (and if) it ever snows again, I'll get out the wider skis but for these conditions a narrower, carvish-type ski is just a lot more fun.

 

If you're going to have a two-ski quiver, I'd recommend something in the 80-85 range to go with whatever you decide on for a wide ski.

 

If you're interested in some specific suggestions based on the conditions when you get here, pm me.  And pray for snow while you're at it.

post #10 of 86
Thread Starter 

Great replies, thanks.  Bushwacker, E88 and MX88 all look interesting.  I did like the Cochise in certain situations, but I was clearly over my head when I ran into a big bump field or went through a gate in the trees.  Of course I know this probably says more about me than the skis.  I'm trying to get a feel for whether I should be looking for all wood, twin tip, early-rise, full-rocker.  With the understanding that what works for one person might not work for another.  As I mentioned, I have not been around skis my whole life, so I have much to learn.

post #11 of 86
Thread Starter 
QThanksauote:
Originally Posted by Bob Peters View Post

Please recommend something that will help me improve my game at big mountain resorts, ESPECIALLY with regard to the time between storms and with regard to bumps and tighter terrain.  This is to say less priority on groomers and open bowls.  Think Gad Valley or the trees off of Wildcat, or under Thunder or Sublette in Jackson Hole.

 

Just my opinion, of course, but I'm not surprised that you didn't have that great an experience on a 100mm+ ski in tight and steep quarters in a low-snow environment at Alta or Snowbird.  To me, that "low-snow" moniker translates into relatively hard and relatively big moguls.  Wide skis are simply more work (again, in my opinion) than narrower skis when you're schlepping around in moguls.

 

We're having exactly the same conditions right now here in Jackson Hole and I'm finding that something around 80mm is a heckuva lot more fun in tight bumps and narrow quarters than wide skis.  I'm skiing the Rossignol Pursuit HP and loving it.  When (and if) it ever snows again, I'll get out the wider skis but for these conditions a narrower, carvish-type ski is just a lot more fun.

 

If you're going to have a two-ski quiver, I'd recommend something in the 80-85 range to go with whatever you decide on for a wide ski.

 

If you're interested in some specific suggestions based on the conditions when you get here, pm me.  And pray for snow while you're at it.

Thanks for the offer.  I see another suggestion for 80-85mm, here I was under the impression that you all charged around on 110's for everything.beercheer.gif

post #12 of 86

Hi, I would try the Armada TST. Great ski for powder and its decent on harder snow. It has a good bit of rocker up front but almost none in the rear. Pretty easy to ski although I prefer narower skis for non-powder skiing.

 

I also used the Salomon Rocker2 92 and loved it in the bumps and trees. VERY easy to maneuver and even though it was a 186cm length it felt MUCH shorter than that. Its a much narrower ski but it should handle powder well. Super fun ski thats flexible but surprisingly it holds great on steep hardpack and mixed snow. 

 

For charching hard on the groomers and steep hardpack I prefer the Volkl Kendo's. They ski a bit long so my choice would be the 177's instead of the 184's I used. 

post #13 of 86

What was it about the Gotamas that you did not like?

post #14 of 86

Sounds like you definitely want a softer ski.  And maybe narrower (and wider), if you're going to have a 2 ski quiver.

 

The Cochise are relatively stiff until you get them moving at higher speeds, then suddenly they seem to soften up and don't feel stiff at all, if that makes any sense.  They certainly kicked my ass in the bumps and trees too until I started to attack them harder and took a more centered / pivot-y approach than I was accustomed to doing.  Which is easier said than done.  But they aren't my go-to ski for either of those conditions, and it's true that they're designed more so for open spaces.

 

The complaints of not enough rocker, however, seem a bit odd to me based on what you described.  The only time that's ever been an issue for me is in heavy, deep powder.

post #15 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayT View Post

Sounds like you definitely want a softer ski.  And maybe narrower (and wider), if you're going to have a 2 ski quiver.

The Cochise are relatively stiff until you get them moving at higher speeds, then suddenly they seem to soften up and don't feel stiff at all, if that makes any sense.  They certainly kicked my ass in the bumps and trees too until I started to attack them harder and took a more centered / pivot-y approach than I was accustomed to doing.  Which is easier said than done.  But they aren't my go-to ski for either of those conditions, and it's true that they're designed more so for open spaces.

The complaints of not enough rocker, however, seem a bit odd to me based on what you described.  The only time that's ever been an issue for me is in heavy, deep powder.

The rocker on the Cochise can be deceiving due to the small amount of splay. The effective edge is about the same as other rockered skis. On my 177s I measure about 138cm of effective edge.
post #16 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayT View Post

Sounds like you definitely want a softer ski.  And maybe narrower (and wider), if you're going to have a 2 ski quiver.

 

The Cochise are relatively stiff until you get them moving at higher speeds, then suddenly they seem to soften up and don't feel stiff at all, if that makes any sense.  They certainly kicked my ass in the bumps and trees too until I started to attack them harder and took a more centered / pivot-y approach than I was accustomed to doing.  Which is easier said than done.  But they aren't my go-to ski for either of those conditions, and it's true that they're designed more so for open spaces.

 

The complaints of not enough rocker, however, seem a bit odd to me based on what you described.  The only time that's ever been an issue for me is in heavy, deep powder.

That's like putting a positive spin on a ski that is hard to turn. Maybe it's related to the recent bygone Blizzards of the 2003 era, when you couldn't turn the ski either.

post #17 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreddyG View Post

Other skis I've considered, on paper, are something from the Salomon Rocker2 line and the 4frnt Cody, which is billed as a ski for less than ideal conditions.

 

I'm the exact same size as you, 5'10"/175, and...

I've got the 4FRNT Cody, and it's an awesomely fun ski...for soft snow.  It's pretty light, nimble, very playful and seemingly made for trees and tight spots....in soft snow.

If you haven't gathered by now, it's not so hot in really firm snow as it's a bit too soft for the hard stuff.  If the snow is powder, cut-up, chopped up, or at all loose in any way, it's great, but when the snow gets hard, I break out my Atomic DD82's, which I've been skiing for awhile now due to our hard conditions up here, too.

 

If you're looking for a soft snow/powder ski of a 2-ski quiver, though, you would probably love the Cody.  It's only 100mm underfoot at 179, but it's also my deep "powder ski," since I don't want 3 skis.  

post #18 of 86

When I was demoing to find my current skis, I tried some that were way too stiff for me.  Not fun.  I've learned to stay away from anything described as a "charger."

post #19 of 86

davluri - once again chiming in on a ski he hasn't been on.

 

Skierish - I read on TGR that next year's Cody is going to be slightly stiffer, which really makes me want to try it out.  Sounds like a fun ski in general.


Edited by JayT - 1/23/13 at 7:32pm
post #20 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreddyG View Post

 

Me- 43 (male), 5'10, 175, reasonably athletic (not couch potato).  Skiing for 6 years, getting to be okay with a lot of money spent on trips and lessons.

 

Skis (for this context): the Gotamas were 186 and worked, I think, because of flex and rocker.  The Cochises are 185 and a handful due to less rocker and metal.  I briefly demoed the Rossignol S3 (178) which I liked a lot in the tight stuff, less on groomers (as would be expected, I suppose) and the Atomic Alibi (173) which I liked on groomers and could probably grow into on the off trail, it's a stiffer ski with less rocker.

 

What should I be looking for in a ski that fits these parameters?  Any other suggestions, or will the S3 do the trick?

 

Thanks!

 

What strikes me about this story, that I'm surprised no one commented on (or maybe I missed it) is the length thing. If you liked the S3 at 178cm, then it doesn't surprise me at all that you found the Cochises a handful at 185cm. The S3 skis very easy and short. (I felt totally at home on the 178s at 5' 7" 135lbs., even though normally I would be on something in the 170cm range in a non- or minimally-rockered ski.) So, regardless of your size, if you liked the S3 at 178, I would think you would logically be on the 177 if you're going to try the Cochise. Even that is likely to feel significantly longer than the 178cm S3. (Haven't tried it myself.) Comparing those two skis may still be apples to oranges in some ways, but at least you're comparing ripe apples to ripe oranges.

post #21 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayT View Post

Skierish - I read on TGR that next year's Cody is going to be slightly stiffer, which really makes me want to try it out.  Sounds like a fun ski in general.

 

If they can manage to do that without taking away any of its current playfulness, why, that would be...the perfect ski!

Hmmm, seriously, sounds as if they wanna throw a little of the Turbo into the Cody.  

If they get that mix right, I hope you don't mind that I would have to curse you for tipping me off to it, thus prompting me to spend yet more money on another set of skis.....curse you in a good way, of course.  smile.gif

post #22 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreddyG View Post

Otherwise know as: desperate plea for advise.  I thought I knew what I was doing when I traded my couple year old Gotamas for a pair of Cochises, turns out, not so much.  Less rocker and added metal left me, an, arguably, advancing intermediate skier, hurting on the "low" snow and tight terrain of Snowbird and Alta last weekend.  I got by okay on groomed to slightly cut up, but bumps and tighter terrain were killing me.  Please recommend something that will help me improve my game at big mountain resorts, ESPECIALLY with regard to the time between storms and with regard to bumps and tighter terrain.  This is to say less priority on groomers and open bowls.  Think Gad Valley or the trees off of Wildcat, or under Thunder or Sublette in Jackson Hole.  You get the idea.  Having said all this, I realize the role of technique and I hereby promise to continue to seek out professional advise on getting better.  As a matter of fact, I'm going to JH for steep and deep camp next month.  Just give me a little something to help me bridge the gap.  smile.gif

 

Real quick:

 

Me- 43 (male), 5'10, 175, reasonably athletic (not couch potato).  Skiing for 6 years, getting to be okay with a lot of money spent on trips and lessons.

 

Skis (for this context): the Gotamas were 186 and worked, I think, because of flex and rocker.  The Cochises are 185 and a handful due to less rocker and metal.  I briefly demoed the Rossignol S3 (178) which I liked a lot in the tight stuff, less on groomers (as would be expected, I suppose) and the Atomic Alibi (173) which I liked on groomers and could probably grow into on the off trail, it's a stiffer ski with less rocker.

 

What should I be looking for in a ski that fits these parameters?  Any other suggestions, or will the S3 do the trick?

 

Thanks!

My emphasis on the bold type. 

You say you're "arguably an advancing intermediate skier" - To that I'd say go to something more for an advancing intermediate and work on technical skills before you jump to an Advanced/Expert ski and take a tactical camp like the JH Steep and Deep. 

Another thing that jumped to mind for me is the length of skis you are choosing for your size.  I may be a bit off, but I would think you'd get more out of a ski the next size down, especially if you're trying to improve your skills to become an advanced skier. 

 

Think of something in the midfat range and take some technical lessons before you get discouraged or (worse) hurt. 

Oh and Bob Peters is a wise man http://www.epicski.com/t/117413/cochise-kicked-my-a#post_1537020

 

As always JMHO and YMMV


Edited by Trekchick - 1/23/13 at 8:00pm
post #23 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by davluri View Post

That's like putting a positive spin on a ski that is hard to turn. Maybe it's related to the recent bygone Blizzards of the 2003 era, when you couldn't turn the ski either.

Owned some of those bygone Blizzards, at least the Titans of some years back before Blizzards were hot. Not so tough to turn, for a beefy ski, smooth, but wanted a lot of driver attention to forward pressure. The Cochise, having finally tried it, isn't like those. At all. 

post #24 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayT View Post

The Cochise are relatively stiff until you get them moving at higher speeds, then suddenly they seem to soften up and don't feel stiff at all, if that makes any sense.  They certainly kicked my ass in the bumps and trees too until I started to attack them harder and took a more centered / pivot-y approach than I was accustomed to doing.  Which is easier said than done.  But they aren't my go-to ski for either of those conditions, and it's true that they're designed more so for open spaces.

 

 

Very true. If you try to drive/hop the skis Old School for tight spots the Cochise is frustratingly slow and heavy BUT if you stay more centered, keep facing down the hill and simply pivot from the knees down they are super quick turners. It took me a while to figure this out and I still occasionally revert but otherwise they turn on a dime especially in bumps where you can kind of 'pivot/slither/pivot' down the hill. Once you have that mastered they are an excellent one ski quiver

post #25 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreddyG View Post

Thanks for the offer.  I see another suggestion for 80-85mm, here I was under the impression that you all charged around on 110's for everything.beercheer.gif

 

I think you would like the Cochise better 1 size down.  I'm about your size and that's what I would pick.  I've been skiing my 178 E88s way more than any of my other skis in JH this season.  I don't know too many "good" skiers who are routinely on fat skis this season unless they are skiing a lot of OB.

post #26 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by tetonpwdrjunkie View Post

 

I think you would like the Cochise better 1 size down.  I'm about your size and that's what I would pick.  I've been skiing my 178 E88s way more than any of my other skis in JH this season.  I don't know too many "good" skiers who are routinely on fat skis this season unless they are skiing a lot of OB.

FreddyG, if you're going to JH and want to get a good lesson, you should definitely hook up with this guy.  

He's another wise one from JH. 

post #27 of 86

I've been messing around with the mounting point on the Cochise and you can really change the characteristics of the ski by moving them forward especially if you're not an overly strong skier or you tend to ski a more centered to back stance.  I haven't seen you ski but as a self described "advanced intermediate" I'm thinking that you probably tend to sit back a little bit especially in variable conditions.  If you sit back on the Cochise they have the tendency to be ass kickers.  If you're a more advanced skier and ski more forward and put more pressure on your tongues the low rocker in the tail releases much easier and the Cochise turns/pivots on a dime and becomes more versatile.  The mounting point on the Cochise tends to be much more traditional than other skis in it's category.  This mounting point is fine for the advanced skiers or someone that is coming off a traditional mount.  But if you're coming off a much more progressive mount which leads to a slightly back stance/balance point by moving the mounting point forward you can sit farther back and the tails will wash and pivot easier especially for the lesser skilled skier.   I don't know which year Gotamas you're coming off of but I believe their mounting point is 2-3cm farther forward in a comparable size.  

 

I'm not saying this will be the for sure fix for you but if you feel like trying it this might be a less expensive solution to purchasing a new pair of skis.  Since you're coming off a Gotama you're used to skiing this waste width of a ski so you don't necessarily need anything narrower.   The metal in the ski does not make it any stiffer.  Technically the Cochise is actually softer than the Gotama but torsionally stiffer.  If you can find a demo shop with Cochise you can ask them to mount you 2-2.5cm farther forward.  If this works you can have your skis remounted instead of purchasing a new pair of skis.  Also if you have not detuned the tails of the skis I would recommend that as well.  Due to the torsional stiffness in the tail they tend to grip more than a similar ski without metal (gotama) this can lead to a really strong feelling tail that is constantly kicking you in the back seat.   Detune roughly 8" of the tail with a gummy stone.

 

Again this might not work but if it does it could save you some $$.  Is JH your next time on snow?  If so TVS at Teton Village has Blizzards for demo.

post #28 of 86
Thread Starter 

A few details:

 

As to why I'm on 185cm for the Cochise, well I was using 186cm Gotamas and they worked for me.  I skied them for four trips between Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming, and I remember being pleased they weren't any shorter.  However, suggestions regarding the next size down on the Cochise could be spot on, and in retrospect I'll have to consider length more closely, as I now understand that two skis that seem close dimensionally can ski very differently.

 

Nothing in particular I didn't like on the Gotamas, I just wanted to try the Cochise.  It's so well reviewed and it's on more magazine covers then Justin Bieber.  There is probably a whole other thread here about ski industry marketing and impressionable Midwesterners.

 

As to going to Jackson Hole for steep and deep, well, I read their description of the camp, along with their definition of "level 8" (found here: http://www.jacksonhole.com/ski-level-assessment.html ), then called and described what I've skied AND how I've skied it and they recommended it.  I can certainly make way down groomed to day-old expert runs and, if I'm "feelin It" my forms okay.  I mean, if a hundred people sign up for the course, I'd like to think I have a place in the bottom 10.  Maybe it's a question of semantics, in my mind, truly "expert" skier aren't messing with ski school camps.

 

If it doesn't work out, it doesn't.  At this point, I'm okay with being sent home with my tail between my legs.  This whole thing has been about taking my lumps, literally, figuratively, and financially.  This applies to learning to ski, ski selection, maintenance and all.  What I'm really trying to do is create a legacy for my kids, I've got two up and running on skis, with one to go, and my oldest is pretty good.  We love being outside and recreating, especially in the mountains, and skiing has been such a great way to keep that stoke going year round.

 

Thanks everyone.

post #29 of 86
FreddyG. I like your attitude!!
post #30 of 86
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wasatchback View Post

I've been messing around with the mounting point on the Cochise and you can really change the characteristics of the ski by moving them forward especially if you're not an overly strong skier or you tend to ski a more centered to back stance.  I haven't seen you ski but as a self described "advanced intermediate" I'm thinking that you probably tend to sit back a little bit especially in variable conditions.  If you sit back on the Cochise they have the tendency to be ass kickers.  If you're a more advanced skier and ski more forward and put more pressure on your tongues the low rocker in the tail releases much easier and the Cochise turns/pivots on a dime and becomes more versatile.  The mounting point on the Cochise tends to be much more traditional than other skis in it's category.  This mounting point is fine for the advanced skiers or someone that is coming off a traditional mount.  But if you're coming off a much more progressive mount which leads to a slightly back stance/balance point by moving the mounting point forward you can sit farther back and the tails will wash and pivot easier especially for the lesser skilled skier.   I don't know which year Gotamas you're coming off of but I believe their mounting point is 2-3cm farther forward in a comparable size.  

 

I'm not saying this will be the for sure fix for you but if you feel like trying it this might be a less expensive solution to purchasing a new pair of skis.  Since you're coming off a Gotama you're used to skiing this waste width of a ski so you don't necessarily need anything narrower.   The metal in the ski does not make it any stiffer.  Technically the Cochise is actually softer than the Gotama but torsionally stiffer.  If you can find a demo shop with Cochise you can ask them to mount you 2-2.5cm farther forward.  If this works you can have your skis remounted instead of purchasing a new pair of skis.  Also if you have not detuned the tails of the skis I would recommend that as well.  Due to the torsional stiffness in the tail they tend to grip more than a similar ski without metal (gotama) this can lead to a really strong feelling tail that is constantly kicking you in the back seat.   Detune roughly 8" of the tail with a gummy stone.

 

Again this might not work but if it does it could save you some $$.  Is JH your next time on snow?  If so TVS at Teton Village has Blizzards for demo.

 

Very helpful stuff, wasatchback.  I did research mounting points a bit and "factory" was a pretty well liked, BUT now that you mention it, when I had the Goatams' mounted I had a good tech, we talked it out and I believe I ended up 1cm forward.  So your saying have them move a demo binding so the whole thing shifts forward a couple cm, very cool.  I'll also look more closely at info on detuning, as that was mentioned above as well.

 

Thanks.

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