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J2, J3 race ski sizing

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Need some help in determining the proper ski sizing for two sons GS and SL skis. Fairly new to racing (older son has one year of high school racing experience) but not new to skiing (experienced agressive skiers).

Son 1, age 16, J2, 141 lb. 5'9"
Son 2, age 14, J3, 147 lb. 5'8"

Racing in NH (& MA - high school). Understand that FIS equipment rules apply for the J2 and will next year for my J3. Although I hear that many mid pack and below, just getting started aren't on legal gear. Since we are buying skis anyway we figured it is best to go that route but are concerned that 165 SL and 180 GS may be too big or too difficult, especially in a stock ski? We also don't want them to grow out of it in a season but don't want to compromise safety & performance at the same time.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
post #2 of 9
Thread Starter 

Forgot to add....

Forgot to mention also that we are looking at Atomic, Fischer, and Volkl stock and non-stock race ski's. Any advice on brand/model differences is helpful too.
post #3 of 9
Welcome to EPIC.

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post #4 of 9
For your older son, I'm not sure what you can get away with rule-wise, but I would go with a 155-160 race stock slalom ski and a 175-180 race carver GS ski. That should do for a couple of seasons.

For the younger one, I would go with a 155 race stock slalom and a 175 race carver GS ski.

155 and 175 would be good for quite a while, until they progress to the point where they need a FIS-legal ski. As far as certain models, I would go with a softer slalom like a Rossignol or Volkl, and for GS, Atomic and Volkl make great race carvers.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 

FIS Changes

Well, I already answered part of my question myself by doing some research. On the FIS website you can find out that the regulations have been changing each year. They already show what they will be in 07/08 and I haven't seen any GS ski on the market (stock or regular) this year that would even be legal for next year in the radius dept. This year 21m, next year 27m. Other changes are in minimum width which most skis seem to be okay with. I can't imagine that a lot of these kids are running out buying new GS skis every year to stay within this requirement unless they are at the top of the pack. Therefore, I am not going to worry about trying to fit the boys into a 180 cm length just yet.

Looking to go with 175 cm GS ski and figured a 165 cm SL ski (this should be FIS legal for some time it seems?) (Also, older son thinks his 155 cm from last season are too short - but we still have those for either one to use if necessary). Do these lengths make sense?

Ruled out Atomics. Think Volkl and Fischer all regular but Fischer SL stock ski got some great reviews from skipress as being "forgiving". I think "easy & energetic" were quoted together. Older son has Fischer 155 cm race SC's that he liked last year. Oh and they both steal my Volkl 6*'s 161 cm once in a while (I've moved on to the Attiva 5*'s 154 cm). We don't have a lot to compare to. Other than that they have twin tips, and some other misc. stuff plus snowboards.....

Love to hear some more opinions on the length issue as well as ski brands and stock vs. non-stock in both SL and GS.

post #6 of 9
I've never thought of the Fischer World Cup Slalom as being forgiving, but perhaps they made some major flex pattern changes for this season. In the past the 166 Slalom has been a pretty beefy ski- much more so than the Atomic SL:11. The Fischer GS can be a pretty energetic ride as well, at least at the FIS lengths.

I'd look at the Rossignol 9x and 9s as options (in the proper USSA lengths). They are pretty soft and round, and the flex pattern in the shorter lengths is suitable for lighter junior racers. Head makes some pretty forgiving skis as well. Don't rule out Atomic, as their ST and LT series are pretty forgiving. The GS:9 and SL:9 are good options for the younger skier.

If they're in the middle of the pack, you can get new-in-wrapper older race skis for less than half retail. Several online retailers offer last year's skis for similar prices, and Rossignol Race Centers offer last year's gear at significant discounts. eBay is another outlet, but you have to know what you're looking for. You don't need the latest and greatest to ski well.
post #7 of 9
I recall some blurb from FIS about the equipment rules going into effect at the Noram level and above a year before standard FIS races. FIS hasn't exactly been forthright in touting their new equipment changes. Regardless, you won't have to deal with them for a while. I know NDS coaches that haven't given the changes a grain of thought.

The 07 Fischer WC GS in 180 (previously 178) is a good place to start. Volkl race stock with a more forgiving plate/binding combo is also an option.
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Okay, not to sound like a Newbie but what is Noram? NDS?

The boys would be racing in NHARA races.

Are you saying make sure we meet the 180 cm length requirement but don't worry about the sidecut radius (which keeps changing.....)?
post #9 of 9
Originally Posted by boysskimom View Post
Okay, not to sound like a Newbie but what is Noram? NDS?

The boys would be racing in NHARA races.

Are you saying make sure we meet the 180 cm length requirement but don't worry about the sidecut radius (which keeps changing.....)?
NorAm = North American Cup. Along with the Europa Cup on the other side of the pond, the Continental Cups are the minor leauges below World Cup and Olympic competition. NDS stands for National Development System.

Depending on how competitive your boys are, you might want to worry about the current ski regulations. But, you certainly shouldn't worry about the new upcoming changes.

Have you talk to their coach? You're boys are at a transitional point as far as equipment is concerned. Skill plays a large role. There are plenty of kids that are your older son's age that are better off on non-legal skis. On the other hand, I've been smoked by similarly aged academy kids skiing GS on big 191's.
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