Originally Posted by KidShaleen
Not sure if this is the right place to ask - if not, don't hesitate to school me.
This may be a dumb question but...
I'm 45. Consider myself a level 7 skier for now. I'm on 165 slalom skis and love to carve up the hill. I started skiing relatively late 15 years old. Never raced. and probably averaged 5 days a year until the past 3 years when I started taking skiing more seriously and average about 20 days.
Is racing in beer league type stuff out of the question? Will I be the Eddie the Eagle of Masters Racing in my area? Is everyone in masters racing former kid racers?
I'm in Toronto, Canada and have no idea where I would start researching my options. My goal is to ultimately just become a better skier and give myself an excuse to stay in shape throughout the year.
It's all good, but a few thoughts:
- Beer league and Masters racing are waaaay different. There are some relatively easy Masters venues, but there are also some real major-league races, like the upcoming RMM DH and SG weekend at Aspen...approaching WC difficulty. Beer League isn't tinker toys, but it's not generally in the same (ahem) league as Masters.
- You can start with SL, but most people start with GS, just because it's generally more accessible in the short term. With or without a little help, you can probably make it through a Master's GS course first time out. You most likely won't even make it through a Masters SL training course, first time out. And your 165s aren't going to cut it for GS.
- If you're a Level 7 skier, you need to learn to ski better, then get in the gates. I've been racing Masters for 25 years, and every fall it's the same thing...at least 6 days of free skiing just to get the balancing act, timing, and feel for the skis back. Then another 5 to 6 days of structured skiing, drills and so forth, with our coaches. Then, easy, half length GS courses. Then SL stubby courses...a few days of that and maybe some easy full length GS full length tall poles SL courses. Only then do we start racing...
- Prepare to start spending $$$, lots of them. My travel budget alone for last season, which included the 2013 Masters Nationals, was probably somewhere in the $2500 range. Ski, boots, poles, suits, wax, tools, etc...something like $2000 to $3000 per season. Passes and coaching fees, probably about $200 a season.
- Get used to getting in shape and staying that way. In the winter, I ski/train/race 5 or 6 days a week, and pump iron in the gym and or ride my bike every chance I get. In the summer, road and mountain biking, and usually 2 to 3 hours of hard tennis 5 to 6 days a week...