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The Ski Challenge: A Night at the Races....

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
Beats a Day at the Opera (with apologies to the Marx Bros.)

Tag Jr. and I took the plunge this winter and signed up for the local league racing down at Buck Hill. The program is called the Ski Challenge. Have completed two nights of racing to date. Can't say I'm real thrilled about the way I'm doing so far, but, never having 'formally' raced before, I can't complain. If you haven’t heard about the Ski Challenge, it is essentially a local race league that follows a NASTAR type of racing format. You race as part of a team and each medal won earns points for your team. From reading their history, it sounds like they have grown tremendously since their founding. I would have to say that it’s a very well run group. I have been most impressed with the organization. For someone pushing 50 years old, this is a great way to start racing. Lots of fun. I was under the impression that the group was a bit more laid back then they turned out to be. There are a lot of good skiers with some fairly serious race gear there along with some geezers like me.

http://www.skichallenge.com/

The first night out, Tag Jr. is on his old Atomic 9.20's from two years ago, and we (meaning me) didn't think to check his bindings, just the base and edges. It was a warm night and the course was very soft. Well, Jr.'s grown a bit in the past two years and his bindings were not at the right DIN setting, so half way down his second run, his ski deflects one way while he is going another and they quickly part company. So far, Dad is keeping about 1 second up on the kid, although I know that it won’t last once he gets used to his old skis again.

The first two nights, I'm running about 3 seconds behind the pacesetter's time, and have a couple of silver medals. Hard to really say right now, but I also feel like it's easier to get a gold in NASTAR than it is to get a gold here. Need to pick up a good second to second and a half to make some gold’s for the team.

So, in the few race clinics I’ve attended, I usually get the same comments. First, I am way late on my turns, meaning, I think, that I’m turning at the gate rather than above the gate. Second, and this is a problem with my skiing in general, that I’m too far back on my skis. This makes me too far behind in all my turns, I think. Second run last night was my fastest of this short season, but by the time I was halfway down I was so late on the gate that I had to skid off speed to make the next turn. Of course, Tag Jr. thinks we just need a pair of GS suits, like the good racers are wearing. Somehow I don’t think a GS suit will buy me 3 seconds on a course the size of Buck Hill. The best racer on our team did suggest that I should be more aggressive out of the starting gate, especially on such a short course. I’m also thinking about getting some protective gear, so I can be a little less worried about actually hitting a gate pole.

So what suggestions would you make to help someone getting into racing? Any suggestions about drills to help improve starts? Thoughts about the essential gear, if any? Any advice would be appreciated.
post #2 of 27

lateness

Don't think "start the turn early", think "complete the turn at the gate".
post #3 of 27
I probably shouldn't be the one giving racing advice here, as my performance in my local race league isn't anything to write home about. But... The thing that I try to keep in mind is to turn on the rise lines. The "rise line" is essentially the opposite of the fall line; that is, the "rise line" is the continuation of the fall line up the hill. If you can be turning at the moment you hit the fall line -- i.e., not "oh, it's time to start thinking about turning", but be on your new edges and actually be turning at the moment you hit the rise line, all kinds of good things start to occur.

For me at least, concentrating on this one thing slows things down enough that I'm able to make a somewhat better turn. i.e., things don't seem so rushed because you have more time. If it's done right, then "rise line" turning will have your turn completed at the gate, but I find it easier to find the rise line then to plot my path around the next gate.
post #4 of 27

Everything you wanted to know about racing - NASTAR style

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tag
So what suggestions would you make to help someone getting into racing? Any suggestions about drills to help improve starts? Thoughts about the essential gear, if any? Any advice would be appreciated.
Welcome to recreational racing - we always need more in our ranks.

Over at the NASTAR forum, in the Technique and Tips section, there are tons of articles specific to the kind of racing your are doing. You'll find everything you wanted to know about equipment in - you guessed it, the Equipment section. Check it out, use the search feature and you will find an article on anything you need to know such as "Start", "Wax", "Tuck", "Weight Bias", "Line" and so on. Its all there and in great detail.

If you get NASTAR timing at your races be sure to jump on the EpicSki Bears Family and Friends team

Edit; Oh yeah, DUH! Epicski.com has a HUGE amount of racing information, you just need to search for it. Epic's search feature is very robust and you can search by section, thread, topic, author, and further refine your search in the advance features.
post #5 of 27
Do you pole plant in the course? This might seem like a stupid question, but very often newcomers to racing stop planting the pole and lose the rythmn they have out of the course (riding the backseat). A good, forceful double pole-plant after turns in steep areas (with the conscious tought of briging your butt back over the ski) can do wonder: everything will slow down and you'll start your turn at the right moment. Not everyone is a fan of pole use, especially in shorter glalom (not really slalom, not really gs) courses, but give it a try.

PS: Concentrate on line (as high as possible, but not too high in the straighter sections) and have your vision go as far as possible for the moment (at least a couple of gates). Don't start to think about hitting gates because that might leave you:
a) bruised
b) wondering about where the carving went when you start skidding in order to bash the gate
c) hooking the tips, especially if you turn at the gate
post #6 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffr
Do you pole plant in the course? This might seem like a stupid question, but very often newcomers to racing stop planting the pole and lose the rythmn they have out of the course (riding the backseat).

PS: Concentrate on line (as high as possible, but not too high in the straighter sections) and have your vision go as far as possible for the moment (at least a couple of gates). Don't start to think about hitting gates because that might leave you:
a) bruised
b) wondering about where the carving went when you start skidding in order to bash the gate
c) hooking the tips, especially if you turn at the gate
jeffr,

Thanks for the suggestions. I have heard the comment before about getting a good pole plant. Unfortunately, I'm most definitely an 'old-school' skier. I was taught NOT to pole plant when I was learning to ski (we wanted to have a very quiet upper body), so, at best in my regular skiing, I might occassionally use a very light pole touch, but I rarely really pole plant. So, I don't 'forget' when I get in to the course, it's a 'new' technique for me.

Given the shortness of the courses we seem to see in our races and the general lack of any really tight gates, I basically look to get down into a tuck at the earliest gate possible, get the hands out in front to try to keep my weight forward and stay that way until I cross the finish line. I suspect that I look a little silly at the moment, but I don't know if I'll get a chance to shoot a little video and post it here and given the lighting at night on the hill, I'm not sure you would be able to see anything anyway.

At this point, I'm not much good at looking past the gate immediatlly in front of me, but I hope to get better at seeing the line past the next two seconds of course. I've also noticed that it's really easy to get into following the ruts even though, given the variations in the racing abilities in the our Tuesday night group, the ruts are generally not the line you really want to take.

Thanks for the comments. I'll try to keep them in mind tomorrow at the next race.
post #7 of 27
Thread Starter 

P.s.

Gary,

Not to get sidetracked on to a different topic, but, after taking a brief read through some of the posts on MSRT technique, my first thought was that's the way I was taught to ski about 35 years ago. So, maybe it's not so new : Anyway, it worked for me then, but I wasn't racing.

I was taught be a family friend, who taught at Breck back then, but spent his last few years at A-Basin till he got clipped by snowboarder a few years back and was forced to retire (at @75 years of age BTW. And please, no hijacking the theard to complain about snowboarders! We've heard it ALL before!)
post #8 of 27

What was "the way" back then (the old days) is the same today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tag
Gary,

Not to get sidetracked on to a different topic, but, after taking a brief read through some of the posts on MSRT technique, my first thought was that's the way I was taught to ski about 35 years ago. So, maybe it's not so new : Anyway, it worked for me then, but I wasn't racing.

I was taught be a family friend, who taught at Breck back then, but spent his last few years at A-Basin till he got clipped by snowboarder a few years back and was forced to retire (at @75 years of age BTW. And please, no hijacking the theard to complain about snowboarders! We've heard it ALL before!)
Tag, this is best handled in the Waist Steering Thread but indeed the posture, stacking, alignment, use of the inside ski, everything in total is different from back then. I've been racing for a few years myself and can tell you that today's technique and turn bears little resemblance to what I did in the '70's. However, it is true that some of the concepts sound similar, such as rotary movement of the torso (Waist Steering), Anticipated-inclination, active absorption (sounds like Joubert, eh?) can be viewed as old ideas if not considered as they are applied in today's modern ski turn. My wife and I have a very complete collection of the instructional books going back to the '30's and yes, some of the concepts discussed in the best of these books still apply but only when taken in the proper context. When you put all of the current elements in their proper context together with the new equipment we move differently with different use of muscles, connective tissue and of course our skeleton. I do appreciate your POV and sorry to hear that your venerable instructor's racing career has been cut short, he should still be out there!
post #9 of 27
Thread Starter 

Still trying to find that extra speed

OK, 4 races into the "season" and I'm getting slower not faster.

Upgraded to a pair of 'real' race skis - pair of Volkl P60 GS race stocks with the Marker Piston race plate. Sweet skis, but in a 180 length, man, it is tough to get them to come around on a short closed gate. Probably should have gone with the 175's, but it's a little hard to demo off the clearance rack.

Anyway, after feeling really great on the new skis free-skiing before the races, wound up with my worst times so far. Really tried to push it on my second run and, once again, late on the gates, carried too much speed and lost an edge. Managed to avoid going down, but was way out of the course and those Volkl's were just not going to come around quick enough for me to recover.

So, noticing after an evening of skiing and racing on these skis that they really need some speed to start responding, the question is how to make them work a bit better on the first couple of gates before you've had a chance to get any speed up and what do you feel is the best way to make a long ski ski short?
post #10 of 27
Thread Starter 

A taste of gold

Finally!! Broke through tonight and picked up that second I needed to move up from silver to gold. Helped that tonight was probably our least technical course so far. Made for a much straighter run that normal which really helped given my struggles to get the volkls to make shorter turns.

Now just have to do a little tuning and get some better wax. Of course if this "winter" gets any warmer here, I'll need to switch to water skis for the next two races : Not supposed to be skiing in the rain in Minnesota on Jan 31! What does everyone recommend for wax when the temp is high, the course is soft and the rain is falling?
post #11 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tag
Finally!! Broke through tonight and picked up that second I needed to move up from silver to gold. Helped that tonight was probably our least technical course so far. Made for a much straighter run that normal which really helped given my struggles to get the volkls to make shorter turns.

Now just have to do a little tuning and get some better wax. Of course if this "winter" gets any warmer here, I'll need to switch to water skis for the next two races : Not supposed to be skiing in the rain in Minnesota on Jan 31! What does everyone recommend for wax when the temp is high, the course is soft and the rain is falling?
I'm a Holmenkol guy through and through. Also, if you've read the last ski racing magazine in the "Wax Room" and world reknown serviceman also says the Holmenkol Beta Mix it the best base prep wax going (testing has proven it as well).

So, here is what I would do.

Go to our website and use our code to get HUGE discounts on Holmenkol Wax AND tuning equipment. This is pure pass through benefit for our racing buddies, we don't take a dime.

Get three things, maybe four,

Beta Mix

Moly

GW25

Hybrid White or Yellow Racing Wax

I assume you have the right tools for the job (Iron, full set of brushes or SpeedBrush System (the BEST but expensive), Scrapers, Edge Bevel Guides, Diamond Stones, Arkansas Stone). If you have any questions about what #1, #2, #3 Brushes you need, let me know.

Ok, for those SUPER WET, I mean SLOPPY WET races do the following

1. Either hotwax and scrape your bases clean or use your structure brush to clean off the bases

2. Crayon the Moly, don't be sparing, really rub it on

3. Hot iron on your Base Prep Wax, for the temps your are talking about Beta Mix is the way to go. It works for a really wide range of temps and has very, very good paraffin and permeates the base.

4. Scrape and brush *This alone will be faster than most folks prep.

5. If you really want the fastest setup and don't want to play around with powders, overlays or spray ons at the top of the course, Iron your Hybrid Race Wax. I've found the Hybrid White works well in a huge range of snow conditions. Again Iron on after #4 then scrape and brush the crap out of your skis, get them to shine.

6. Make sure you clean your side walls and edges well (using Toko Paste Wax if you are OCD is the best way to clean the sidewalls, its cheap, like $9 a tube and will do a hundred prep jobs).

For old snow or new snow with high moisture content, NOT SLOPPY WET do all of above but replace step 2 with Crayon GW-25 additive.

Probably more than you wanted to know but this works really, really well.

Remember, when using Flouro you should always use a respirator.
post #12 of 27
Gary, is all this waxing-prep-work done on (or near) the slope or at home the day before? What parts do people save for just prior to launch (if any)? How much warm-up and free skiing do you do on the wax job before and during races waiting for your next run? Touch-ups needed?

...Holy-menkol...! Lookit those wax prices. Hmmm, can't we just use Candle Wax from our local Hallmark shop? No respirator would be needed. And that scented stuff would even make your skis smell great....

.ma
post #13 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelA
Gary, is all this waxing-prep-work done on (or near) the slope or at home the day before? What parts do people save for just prior to launch (if any)? How much warm-up and free skiing do you do on the wax job before and during races waiting for your next run? Touch-ups needed?

...Holy-menkol...! Lookit those wax prices. Hmmm, can't we just use Candle Wax from our local Hallmark shop? No respirator would be needed. And that scented stuff would even make your skis smell great....

.ma
Okay, your razzing me, right? Its all done at night. I wax and always let me skis sit over night then do the scraping, brushing and polishing the next morning. For big races I always shuttle my race skis up, I have multiple pair of GS and Slalom Skis so I can warm up on another pair, they are close enough. For the smaller races I take 2 warm up runs, max. I HATE SCREWING with my skis in the start area. So I never do anything other than detune if needed. I don't even brush and never use overlays, korking, etc. I have found I hit it better with the waxing system and the Holmenkol stuff has been designed to handle a high range of snow types, temps and moisture content. I do race waxes with all my buddies on this particular 300 yard flat on the top of Payday. I'm usually 10 - 15 yards ahead by the end of it and they get all nutty about their overlays, powders, blah, blah. That's pretty good on a tech ski.

No, I wax for the race day and race it, I don't wax again during in between races. I do get snow temps and snow types from my service guy the day before and the morning of the race in case I need to change my Race Wax the morning of the race. When I'm on the road, same thing, I have a real good travel bench, good vices and just setup in our room with a tarp, I've never been bitched out by the made service. I clean up the scrapings and filings after each job.

As for the price, with that code on our site you'll save between 40 and 50%. So the Beta is not real expensive and is probably the best thing you can use for your daily and training wax. I'm not getting paid by Holmenkol, they have just offered a discount to our guests at our website, that's all we asked for. We are truly behind the racer and want to use our goodwill to help the community, its seems to be working.

Since I do a lot of sprint racing (NASTAR) where waxing is really important I think it can be pretty clearly seen that I hit the waxes pretty well, its sure as hell not the pilot

BTW, the code? Its on the website. Once you've got your shopping cart set, you put in your CC and the code provided goes into the "Coupon" field. When the card is approved you will see the new prices on the order confirmation. Example; I just bought the SpeedBrush System with three brushes, it would have cost me over $300, how about $156 And, by the way, the system works HUGE. I tune 6 to 9 pair of skis every three days (my wife and I), the SpeedBrush system has taken about 20 Minutes of brushing off of each pair, a huge time saving and I get the same quality polish.

It is the only drill/brush system where you can simply undo the chuck and quickly change brushes (like in 5 seconds). Very high quality construction. I know this is way TMI but I got this great Craftsman drill, its a 90 degree drill, not with the typical handle, that thing has two real beefy batteries and is very ergonomic working with the brush stick.

Hope I answered your questions. Again, I know, a bit of TMI but I'm way into the ski prep thing, I believe its the difference in many races.
post #14 of 27

Oh, here's my work area ;-)

Yeah, I'm serious, that's a Wintersteiger Grizzly Bench bolted to my wall. Got a TV in there, all kinds of lighting. Yeah, real serious

post #15 of 27
Wow, lots more to the waxing process than I'd ever looked into before. I'm just this season poking around with racing for the first time. Still haven't a clue what I'm doing out there but having plenty of fun experimenting.

Wax hasn't really been on my radar yet. Still messing with edges, binding placement, et al. More concerned with stability thru the ruts than anything else.

The few runs I've made have been on relatively straight courses. Lots of earlier skiers took a wide path and I've been aiming straight and narrow. My track into the gate crosses 'outward-bound' ruts and my track away from the gate does the same off the other way. My preferred route cuts across ruts at about a 15-degree angle. The 'downside' rut generally has quite the berm built up by the time I run.

This leads to a mighty big 'one-two' lateral jostle on gate-exit as each ski hits the berm sequentially. Kinda tosses me around a bit. One such berm actually swiped my left ski a couple weeks ago. Night racing makes it pretty hard to see such things from any distance away. A prejump/retraction move seems to help but not enough for my comfort zone. Any thoughts?

Tag is seeing conditions similar to my own here. We're getting a lot more snow here, but just barely is it not rain... Temps are right at 31 & 32 all the time. This leads to soft snow and big berms. Might have to try messing around with wax a bit. Wax cuts thru berms... right?

Tag, what kind of courses? SL? GS? I'm seeing gates that are maybe 10' offset and 80 - 100' down the hill. Is that normal for GS? Can't possibley be SL. I know they're doing this to try and keep the ruts down but I'm still wondering what typical gate placement is like for the rest of the world.

.ma

PS edit: Gary, in the image on nastar at: http://img315.imageshack.us/img315/8...uscles44ad.jpg
you've drawn two yellow arrows showing rotation or torque... These arrows seem to point -downward- a bit rather than directly across your waist, and the upper arrow is drawn larger...?

1) Is the intent to apply torque somewhat downward?
2) Do the mismatched arrow sizes mean your upper-torso rotating a bit more than lower torso?
post #16 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelA
Wow, lots more to the waxing process than I'd ever looked into before. I'm just this season poking around with racing for the first time. Still haven't a clue what I'm doing out there but having plenty of fun experimenting.

Wax hasn't really been on my radar yet. Still messing with edges, binding placement, et al. More concerned with stability thru the ruts than anything else.

The few runs I've made have been on relatively straight courses. Lots of earlier skiers took a wide path and I've been aiming straight and narrow. My track into the gate crosses 'outward-bound' ruts and my track away from the gate does the same off the other way. My preferred route cuts across ruts at about a 15-degree angle. The 'downside' rut generally has quite the berm built up by the time I run.

This leads to a mighty big 'one-two' lateral jostle on gate-exit as each ski hits the berm sequentially. Kinda tosses me around a bit. One such berm actually swiped my left ski a couple weeks ago. Night racing makes it pretty hard to see such things from any distance away. A prejump/retraction move seems to help but not enough for my comfort zone. Any thoughts?

Tag is seeing conditions similar to my own here. We're getting a lot more snow here, but just barely is it not rain... Temps are right at 31 & 32 all the time. This leads to soft snow and big berms. Might have to try messing around with wax a bit. Wax cuts thru berms... right?

Tag, what kind of courses? SL? GS? I'm seeing gates that are maybe 10' offset and 80 - 100' down the hill. Is that normal for GS? Can't possibley be SL. I know they're doing this to try and keep the ruts down but I'm still wondering what typical gate placement is like for the rest of the world.

.ma
Not answering for Tag but courses should definitely be relaxed in offset in soft conditions to protect the athletes.

The most important feature of a course set is the vertical distance between the gates. Here are some very general rules of thumb, these are NOT FIS requirements, you can find these in detail on the FIS site

Slalom 12 - 15 Meters

Giant Slalom 20 - 25 Meters, In combinations such as delays and corridors there are not meter limit

SuperG 30 - 40 Meter, there is no defined distance in SuperG and Downhill, however.

Off sets are really the art of course setting. The longer the vertical distance the more the off set, the shorter the vertical distance less off set. About half the vertical is approximately the offset.

NASTAR and "Beer Leagues" 18 - 20 Meter, less off set than USSA, MASTERS, NCAA and so forth.

As for berms. Berms are usually associated with ruts, but not always. When the berm is loose snow that was on top of hard snow the berm builds up on the outside of the turn, really the outside of the "Track". Wax isn't really the answer to deal with Berms, skiing a high enough line that you can finish your turn inside and above the "berm" is the key. Go too straight and get late 'n low, the berms can not only be slow but dangerous. You can learn how to ski the round line fast by carving clean turns as well as letting your skis get out away from you to find the fall line after your initiation, this way you can take it pretty deep (lower your apex in relationship to the gate) with a lot of your direction change happening after the gate but still stay out of those berms. On the other hand, if you get your turn started early enough that you can finish more of your turn above the gate so you can come up under that gate can give you another line option to consider. If you are really dealing with ruts and the rut exit check out the link above. Just a thought.
post #17 of 27
Thread Starter 
MA,

I'm hardly an expert at racing, but I would also think you would be better off not trying to ride up and over the ruts on both ends of your turns. Then again, if your gates are only offset by 10 feet, that is a really straight course.

The Ski Challenge sets their courses very much like a NASTAR course, so it is a modified GS course. At my site, Buck Hill, we only have enough vertical for about 9 gates for our race. We run two courses side by side to get all the racers through (@120 each race night), so we don't have room to get a lot of offset, but I think we usually get close to the 10 meters Gary mentioned (@30 feet). Last night, I suspect due to the weather, was the straightest course we've seen this season.

I've been using the Volkl's straight as they came out of the plastic, but now that I've put a couple of days of skiing on them, I'm thinking it's time to work on the bases a bit and get some better waxing. The edges still seem pretty good for now.

Two more races to go, then it's off to Copper
post #18 of 27
That program used to be part of the Great American Ski Challenge. It was run by Dee Burdash and included several areas in Wisconsin and the UP.
It was a ton of fun, we used to be part of it at Tyrol. There was aweekly newspaper published with everyone's results. I used to compare results with a buddy up in Marquette MI.
I was glad to see this thread move towards course sets. The local league has been setting really straight irregular courses (par os 14.3) and there have been a number of complaints about fairness and safety.
I am a USSA and FIS course setter and have been at odds with them for quite awhile. USSA/FIS specs for Tyrol is 9 to 12 gates. 24 M distance gives 9 or 10. When we time our trainers set like this we get about a 16+ sec par. The courses they set have the first three gates (on the pitch) jammed together at about 15 meters with about 3 M offset. The rest are 25 to 30 M with about 2 M offset. This isn't much fun for good skiers and is dangerous for the lesser ones. Part of the problem is they don't measure and when I asked them the distance the answer they gave me measured about 60% of what they thought it was.
Sorry about the rant, as you might guess I'm pretty upset about it.
My question is: What are the reccomendations for distance and offset for NASTAR? I know that, like FIS, they are mostly just reccomendations.
BTW: FIS slalom distance this year is 13 M max. (USSA has the same spec as FIS for course sets)
post #19 of 27
Gary, I'd read the rut thread since it was posted the day after a rut stripped me of a ski at full speed. Re-reading your post I'm reminded of a couple questions I was too busy to ask that day.

On 'Ruts with Holes' I was wondering what you mean by 'holes'. I did notice that skiddy skiers tend to gouge-out a slightly deeper rut depth from right at, to just below each gate... to this do you refer?

Also, bearing in mind the long-vertical, short-offset courses I mention above - I do find a lot of 'fanning out' ruts coming out gate-exits. Oddly, despite the -long- distance to the next gate many people still make 'J' shaped turns right at the gate, then they make very long arcs (very little turning) for 50-60' and hook-out their 'J turn' right at the gate. I'm guessing they're doing this to deliberately slow down? (Sort of like in bumps: going straight down the trough and slamming sideways into the next bump to slow down?) This creates a berm that extends well across my horizon - from sea to shining sea.

This mondo berm starts 5-7' to the outside of the gate (largely parallel to my path) and curves around behind the gate until it reaches across maybe 2-4' on the other side - at which point it is also most catawampus.

Trying for my own turn-apex right at the gate and desiring to take the tight, straight line aims me right at the tail-end of many berms resulting in arial rebalancing. Your post suggests a tight line but do you propose 'extra' turning to get beyone that tail of the wall? Is there no reasonable way to go over them? to blast thru them? Bangalore Torpedos maybe? (Suggesting wax to melt thru berms earlier was just humor BTW)

---
On the topic of chatTttTttTttTtter... Some gates replace the outbound berm with outbound fans of many shallow (though sharper) diverging ruts. My preferred track cuts across these as well. Due to their washboard nature and skewed angle they tend to have me skipping downstream like a stone across rough river water, unnearving but OK - until I hit a rogue wave... Since its a long way to the next gate I've been going for 'flat' skis as quick as possible, which may contribute to the abundant rattling that I get. Is this a Bad Plan?

---
Tag, yep - an overly straight course in my opinion. Seems to favor those fearless types who are willing to increase their speed until air friction itself burns them up. Having seen so many GS pics here on EpicSki of more resonable turny courses I kinda thought that's what I'd see in the real world. Maybe it'll get better if it cools off more. 'Till then, I'm looking for ideas in dealing with it. Don't mean to hijack your thread but figure my explorations might be similar to your own. I'm doing the doubles thing as well - paired racing with a team points aspect.

Not sure how many gates I really see. They're kinda blurry as they go by from so much vibration. Sometimes, I see double.

And I'm on Volkl's also. G31's at 188. Probably not the right gear for this. Too long and stiff for me and likely contributing to the double-vision thing. I'll try counting the gates next time, then devide by two.

.ma
post #20 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SLATZ
It was a ton of fun, we used to be part of it at Tyrol. There was aweekly newspaper published with everyone's results. I used to compare results with a buddy up in Marquette MI.
I was glad to see this thread move towards course sets. The local league has been setting really straight irregular courses (par os 14.3) and there have been a number of complaints about fairness and safety.
I am a USSA and FIS course setter and have been at odds with them for quite awhile. USSA/FIS specs for Tyrol is 9 to 12 gates. 24 M distance gives 9 or 10. When we time our trainers set like this we get about a 16+ sec par. The courses they set have the first three gates (on the pitch) jammed together at about 15 meters with about 3 M offset. The rest are 25 to 30 M with about 2 M offset. This isn't much fun for good skiers and is dangerous for the lesser ones. Part of the problem is they don't measure and when I asked them the distance the answer they gave me measured about 60% of what they thought it was.
We get a weekly newspaper distributed at the race each week and, of course, info put on the web, along with our results sent into NASTAR. Unfortunately, NASTAR doesn't allow me to put in multiple clubs, so my Ski Challenge data can't be applied to both my Ski Challenge team and the EpicSki Bears team. So, I'll have to make some NASTAR runs at Copper and post those times to EpicSki.

MA, not a problem, I don't look at it as a hijack at all. The thread was started over in this forum to talk about race technique, yours, mine or anyone elses. I never thought I would get this much of a charge out of racing. Always found it fun to do NASTAR, but always thought most race programs would be waaaay too serious for me. The Ski Challenge is a great way to start and I find myself getting a bit hooked on speed.

Funny last night when I got to the hill, I thought we would be in for a night of slow times. Last time the conditions were this soft, the pacesetters were running upper 17 seconds. Then I got out on the hill, inspected the course and thought Geeez, this is almost straight! And the first few good racers were all posting high 16 second times which I thought were good times given the slow conditions. Slatz, you concerns about the safety on a too-straight course showed up in the run-out area at the bottom. Several people, including me, couldn't pull up in time and slide into the snow fence at the back. Actually, my problem was hitting the chop in that area with a bit too much weight on the one foot and having a death cookie strip my ski off the other foot. Sent me on a nice slide into the back fence.
post #21 of 27
Thread Starter 
P.S. MA, G31's at 188 would probably be a good 20 cm longer ski than most everyone else out on my hill which might also be a reason why their turn radius is a bit more pronounced than yours.
post #22 of 27
Yup. Most everyone is on 160-174 gear. Now, If my skis were just another 60 or 70 CM longer... I might not even notice those ruts. I could just span them.

.ma
post #23 of 27
How does this Epic Ski team work? Can you be on it as well as your home team?
post #24 of 27
Fear and fixation on gate early in a racing program will make you late for the gates. You live in Minnesooooooooda so its perfectly acceptable to duct tape cardboard to your legs n' arms and then have fun cuz the fear is gone and the cardboard creates a festive bashing atmosphere. The quarter inch stuff is about the best eh.
post #25 of 27
Thread Starter 

Ya'sure, yu'betcha

Vill look real gud over dem blaze orange carharts, doncha know!
post #26 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tag
Vill look real gud over dem blaze orange carharts, doncha know!
Tvasn't funny. How you tink I know eh!. Yah gotta cut dah elbow outada cardboard though, acourse not doin so keeps dah arms up eh. I vouldn't be true yooper if I didn't know these tings doncha know.
post #27 of 27
Last night we had a great course with ten gates and a 15+ par. Lots of fun actually getting the skis up on edge.
A friend who has been going to trials for years said he was told there that the par should be about 5% more than a tuck run straight down the hill. Works for me.
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