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Advice on making major fool of myself

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
After dozens of posts noting the racing bias around here, I ended up taking a slew of lessons this February from a racing oriented instructor in Canada. Who took apart my skiing and put it (partially) back together using gates, among other stuff. The most complementary things he said were that I was 1) too slow, 2) too upright, and 3) couldn't do smooth transitions. (Well, OK, he also said I had good balance and leg strength. But he emphasized the slow part.)

This guy also encouraged me to try actual low-level racing on the grounds that it would make me a better skier (and I'm sure he was thinking, hilarious side show for real ex-racers, unless they have clinics for middle aged wanna-be's like those fantasy baseball camps).

So god help me, I'm actually thinking of doing this. Going to go over to the instructional page to get advice on local clubs, clinics etc., and will spend the summer flogging my legs. (Wife seems to frown on me being in Chile for three months. Narrow minded.) And I'm here to get advice about skis. Which seem to be pretty cheap right about now.

I'm looking for a pure race ski (just for running gates), but one that will allow a 165 lb, 6' guy with funky knees and let's say "developing" technique to handle it. Right now I use a 05-06 Rossi VS (158) to train; it's quick and damp, keeps me honest about CM, but feels loose on rough ice/ruts at speed. My recreational carver is a iSupershape (165); best all purpose carver on the planet, very smooth, but doesn't feel as quick edge to edge as I'd assumed a slalom ski would. (Likely me, not the ski.)

What I don't like for sure: Atomics, just too lively and stiff (At least the B-5 and the cross - SX 11's?). Ditto for Fischers, I'd guess. (Owned a RX-8, too jouncy on rough snow, everyone says the WC SC is really a board and forget about the SL.) Don't know much about Nordicas or Heads or the smaller brands. Sollies seem like a candidate, but every review emphasizes how freaking quick and light they are. Good match for me?

Also, I've located very good deals on the following:

1) Rossi WC Box SL 05-06. Said to be more forgiving than this year's and very damp/smooth.
2) Rossi VS Oversize 05-06 in 165. Just more of what I have now. Unclear it will do the job, but maybe the 7 cm will really change the potential.
2) Volkl Racetiger SL 06-07. Said to be a good, smooth ski that will teach you to get better; owned the 6* and a bunch of others, always liked Volkls on ice.
3) Elan SLX Pro 05-06. Said to be a good basic ski to develop technique, worry that it might be too stiff. (WC's are said to be I-Beams.)
4) Stockli Laser SL 05-06 and 06-07. Said to be surprisingly accessible, depending on plate. But I own an XL with a 13 mm carving plate; if it's any stiffer than that I'll be in immediate trouble.

I'd appreciate any comments you all have about these (or any other's I've left out.) Thanks.
post #2 of 7
Try Stockli SC 163 cm/ R13.5 m (less radical than SL), VIST Speedlock Pro 19mm plate (or Speedlock Race if you want a stiffer set up) and 6-14 binding.

I teach on this and use it as my training ski (I ski 170 cm/ R14.8 m but I am 6'2" and 195 lbs and like to ski fast)

Also consider how edge set up really affects the feel of a ski. I run 1 base/ 88 side on all my skis.

I had the previous SC (168cm) with a 0.5 base/ 87 side and I felt like my skis were dragging me across the piste.

I would try 0.75 (Swix make a guide) and 88 or 87 side depending on how strong your legs are and how much fast twitch muscle you have.

I am going to stick to GS myself as I d not own any fast twitch muscle and I really enjoy the longer radius high speed turns. I will be going with Stockli GS 188cm/ R26 m, VIST Speedlock Race 19mm and 8-16 bindings. I will be going for 1 base/ 87 side.
If I can talk the rep into a deal I will get one pair for training and one for racing as shorter courses can really come down to a 'wax' race.
post #3 of 7
: 3 months in chilie.......

....drooling with envy.......
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
No, the 3 months in Chile was a joke, Phil, as in I'll be home working out in the gym.

Thanks for the idea, Andrew. I take it that I should fugeddabout true WC skis, forgiving or not, for now?
post #5 of 7
Yes. Forget about them.

I'd guess retail race would work a lot better.
post #6 of 7
I went with the Elan SLX Fusion Pro this year after several years of being on race stock equipment and couldn't be happier. The Fusion system makes the skis very smoothly but aggressively enter the turn while still offering great snow feel. Energy exiting turns is good, but of course is nowhere near a real race ski. I only lost an edge on them once while on ice and it was likely because I was trying to crank out high speed long radius turns rather than the short radius its designed for. Not terribly versatile, but come on- its an SL ski.
post #7 of 7
Get a Cheater GS ski like the Head Supershape Speed or a good quality Race carver like the Nordica Speedmachine 16.

Consider a ski with sandwich construction ski and a 113-66-98mm sidecut, give or take a mm or two. I would get a 170 or 175cm with a 15 to 17 meter turn radius. Almost every manufacture has a model like this.


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