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Rossi 9x world cup GS ski problems

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
My son, age 15, 5'9" 170#, has been in race programs for years, now on his high school race team. Last year, he still had junior level GS and SL skiis, but this year he needed(lucky me) both in adult versions. We ski at Stratton, and there is no opportunity to demo any race level skiis. We went by the advice of a very well respected ski coach who also works in the ski shop.

My son likes the Rossi slalom skiis we bought, but is having a lot of trouble with the Rossi 9x GS skiis we bought. The recommendation was 181 cm, and he is feeling that they are just plain too long. He says they feel great in the long GS turns, but he just can't muscle them fast enough in the shorter turns. Within his peer group of racers, he tends to be less aggressive than the others.

The salesman knew his skiing ability and factored in the probability of some additional growth by next year.

Was his recommendation of 181cm appropriate?
post #2 of 10
I prefer a gs ski in a shorter length for more all mountain versatility but I'm not racing on it so I don't have those issues of FIS length requirements to deal with. I've found that a longer length is strictly suitable for gs turns only, as the ski was made to do.

Can't he get a demo ski to try from someone at Stratton on the race team or that goes to school there?

181 cm sounds appropriate based on his height and weight. Have you talked with other coaches?
post #3 of 10
Well, I've seen people who can't handle the 175, while some small guys will ski on the 189 version. It's really a technical thing, and I don't think the 175 would prove to be better, based on his dimentions.

It is quite possible that he is having issues adapting to big people GS sticks. I know that, when I got on my 180 GS skis at 16, it took me about a season to adapt to them.

What I recommend is giving it time and taking a look at technique. He probably needs more vertical movement to be able to really bend a 21m ski. As well, he may want to think about being quite patient at the top of the turn before diving in to bring the ski across; more time in the fall line will generate more speed, which will place more force on the ski and allow it to bend more.

I have not seen him ski. These are only speculations based on what is common when people get thier first real GS skis.
post #4 of 10
Originally Posted by vermont ice
Was his recommendation of 181cm appropriate?
Does he compete in USSA sanctioned events?

If so, he is required to ski on at least a 180 (including the 5 cm tolerance offered by the FIS rules) this year. It must have a 21m radius. If the salesman knew he was competing in USSA events and suggested something else, he would have been doing you a disservice.

Unfortunately, here in NY these rules are actually being enforced. These rules are unconscionably stupid.

edit: Just saw the "high school" comment. If the high school league doesn't expressly require the ski to meet the above requirements, you should by all means get him on a 175ish board with a 16 or 17 meter radius. Expect him to immediately drop a second or more if you do so.
post #5 of 10
I would have to agree with skiingman's advice. As I said, the problem isn't necessarily the length as much as the nature of the ski. Something more detuned may be more favourable.
post #6 of 10
If he needs the FIS-length, the only chance for the beginning light juniors is to get a ski soft enough. The flex issue might be more important than a few centimeters.
The lack of options sometimes (often?) leads to light boys racing on too stiff skis.
The people from Stratton Mountain School must have tons of experience with the problem. As suggested, could you contact anybody there and try some really soft skis?
(Btw, I know about SMS because the Head Coach was and I hope still is Pavel Stastny, the most-respected alpine coach in the Czechoslovak history.)
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Correction: his ski is 9S GS;not 9X.

Although he skied for years with the J programs at Stratton, under USSA sanctions, his high school ski program that he is with now has no affiliation.

Thank you all for the excellent responses. I'm new to the forum and quite impressed.

As an aside: the coaches in the J racing program (for kids) at Stratton (and I'm sure at most other similar programs) are some of the nicest, most dedicated, expert, underpaid individuals. My hat off to all of you who are in similar positions.
post #8 of 10
The 9S is, I think, the Rossignol slalom ski. It wouldn't make a ton of sense for him to be using it for GS ... for that matter, I'm pretty sure you can't get the 9S in a 181. The 9X is the GS ski (for marketing reasons, Rossignol changed the "G" to "X" in their race ski models in the "7G" era, back in the '90s).

My reaction is the same as a few others: the stiffness could be more of an issue than the length. Although, at 170 pounds, he's not small, if he was using a junior ski until this season, the change might be fairly dramatic.
post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 
It is the GS racing ski, so maybe I have the letter mixed up.
post #10 of 10

Young Racers

I had a young race, son of a ski patrol friend that did the same thing. 15/16 years old, out of the jr. stuff and dove right into the 9S World Cup and the 9X World Cup. (pure rase stock equipment) While the 9S worked great the young man didn't have the weight, leverage, techneque...any one or a combination of two or more, to flex the 9X World Cup enough to get max performance out of it. He struggled for a year and a half and finally with more body mass and the talent to apply it to the ski, they started doing what he wanted them to do. The 9X Oversize might have worked better for him. Was it the the consumer version of the 9X World Cup or the pure race stock version? Big differance there too. The 9S is the short radius 12m ski max length 165 FIS ski. Not the ski you want to be running GS gates.
The 9X WC at 181 is 21m ski FIS check you sons age and classification.
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