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Junior GS Race Ski Advice

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I have a 5'7" 128 lb. 12 year-old (almost 13) second year J4 (but first year racing) daughter. As she keeps growing I need to buy her some new GS skis @ 170 cm. I have consistently gotten advice to keep her in a junior ski, which sounds reasonable. I am looking at four models and would love some feedback & pros/cons. The models are:

Head Worldcup GS Team (170 cm)
Volkl Racetiger GS Racestock Jr. (170 cm)
Nordica Doberman GSJ (171 cm)
Atomic GS 12.2 Jr. (170 cm)

If you also have binding feedback on any of these that would be great (for example, Atomic Neox 310 or Neox 412 vs. Atomic Race 310 or Race 412), or Marker 12.0 vs. Atomic, etc.

Thanks!
post #2 of 16
First year racing: Rossignol 9X, 167 cm.

They are soft, and forgiving. Just perfect for learning to race.

I'd avoid the Nordica, it needs an experienced driver; not a first time racer.
post #3 of 16
First, ask your daughters coach. Without looking at at your daughters technique and considering she has only raced one year as J4, get a GS ski that works for her. At lot of J4 racers (with more experience) use Fisher, Head, and Nordica GS jr. skis. Even better, your daughter might want to demo skis during the summer, under the watchful supervision of a her coach. Sorry, I did not recommend a ski, but I'd suggest you get the binding that goes with the ski. charlier
post #4 of 16
First of all, get an opinion/recommendation from her coach.

Here is a thread that you may find useful as well.
http://forums.epicski.com/showthread.php?t=55788
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks. On the bindings, there's a fair amount of discretion, particularly with the Atomics.
post #6 of 16
I agree with the reference to getting the coaches opinion as to what might work for your daughter in comparison to other skiers who have tried different products. Though this suggestion implies that the coach knows and is not biased toward a particular brand. Skiers around here love Fischers but I'm not convinced they actually are better.
Consider that a Neox 3-10 binding is LIGHTER than the 4-12. So make a decision on the ski as previously suggested then pick a binding but I'm sure the DIN will fit several models so consider the weight.
EJ
post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 
Since the coaches represent skis and aren't kids I wonder if the advice is totally objective. Having said this it's possible to dance on the head of a pin on this... I want to make sure I don't get her something too hard to ski... and I fear the Nordicas are just that... but after that... all these skis are darn good and she's still got tons to learn!

On sizing, does 170 cm sound right?

And, 155cm for SL (also in a JR style)?
post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by JHSki View Post
Since the coaches represent skis and aren't kids I wonder if the advice is totally objective.
Sure, that point is valid. However, although an opinion from the coach may not represent an unbiased view, the recommendation (if any) is likely based on a ski that he/she is familiar with. And, unless you ask, you won't know if his/her opinion is worth considering.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JHSki View Post
I want to make sure I don't get her something too hard to ski... and I fear the Nordicas are just that... but after that... all these skis are darn good and she's still got tons to learn!

On sizing, does 170 cm sound right?

And, 155cm for SL (also in a JR style)?
Here is my 2 cents worth (from one who is far from being pro)... For 5'7", 128lb is pretty light for an athlete. Combined that with her age and this being her first year racing, I would start with at least 5cm shorter for GS.
post #9 of 16
JHSki

I am not sure that I agree about coaches ability to make recommendations. A good coach has the athletes best interest. I guess summer demo's are not an option. So given one year of ski racing and w/o evaluating her skiing technique, a 155 SL seems fine (jr ski may not come about 150cm). She might have difficulty using a 155cm SL FIS level ski. A 170 cm GS ski is probably fine. charlie
post #10 of 16
There is no question that a JR ski is correct. Is there any question that she's got a LOT to learn? Then give her learning skis, not FIS race stock.

She's up against enough tough stuff without making problems by giving her skis that belong on seasoned racers.

Any racestock is ridiculous (volkl). Atomic, Nordica, Head will all be too stiff -- no performance until uncomfortably fast.

You do not give an F1 car to someone that just got her licence.

Rossi 9x is the only choice. It won't punish mistakes as badly.
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks much everyone for the counsel. I should have been clear about something; she's been skiing for seven years and skis aggressively all over the mountain. It's just she's new to racing. I'll add the 9X to my investigation!
post #12 of 16
At almost 13, is your daughter going to the J3 age group next season?
I think this corresponds to our K2 level (ages 13-14).

For the size & weight you've given, 170 is a good GS length. If she's strong and skilled, a 175 wouldn't be out of the question either, so try to get some guidance from the coaches who are training her.

I'm not positive, but I thought the longest Atomic GS12.2 (17m radius Jr race model) was 165cm. For her size, this might be a bit light, so the Atomic LT12 in a 169cm length could be a better choice. I would lean towards the 412 bindings rather than the 310 -- I prefer the Race model, but the Neox is also good.

Not too make the list too long, but the Fischer RC4 WC JR GS is another nice ski. Match this one up with the Z13 binding.

As others have noted, no need to rush into FIS-rated equipment. I had some 12-year olds testing full FIS skis this spring just for fun, and they could free-ski them well, but they couldn't race them.
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Thanks much everyone for the counsel. I should have been clear about something; she's been skiing for seven years and skis aggressively all over the mountain. It's just she's new to racing. I'll add the 9X to my investigation!
Fisher, Rossi, Volkl, Elan, and Nordica all make age/skill appropriate junior skis. Although your daughter has skied for many years, making the transition to a second yr J4 will take some time. I bet her skiing will really change this coming year. Its amazing how good coaching with a combination of directed free skiing, drills and some gate training will change your daughters technique and confidence. have fun! charlier
post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by mogulmuncher View Post
I had some 12-year olds testing full FIS skis this spring just for fun, and they could free-ski them well, but they couldn't race them.
Ding! Ding! Ding! Great point!

Skiing aggressively all over the mountain is not the same as skiing in a course. "Turn where you choose" is different than "turn now". And "go as fast as you can" is not the same "go as fast as you want".

Race courses are very humbling.
post #15 of 16
im a j1 and i went from rossignols to dynastar this season, i would recommend a dynastar look and lange combo, our team has had more than a few problems with atomic and nordica, and the volkls are great but they get mixed up a lot at races because they are so widely used. the best choice would be a technica, marker, and volkl combo or the dynastar. but overall talk with your coaches and reps first
post #16 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by JHSki View Post
I should have been clear about something; she's been skiing for seven years and skis aggressively all over the mountain. It's just she's new to racing.
As others have already noted, free skiing and course racing are two different things. There are way too much kids who freeskis really well but cannot run a course. On the flip side, there are just as many kids who top performing racers who cannot freeski at all (especially when it comes anything off-piste and untracked). Good racers should be able to handle all conditions equally well so your daughter is already more than half way there.
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