Dartmouth Carnival - Slushy Sloshy Snow
The Dartmouth Carnival races began with some alarming rainfall and gusts of wind. However, the EISA skiers all gave their best effort to conquer the slow and slushy course in Hanover, NH today. The temperatures were above freezing for the women's race which provided a layer of water over the snow to keep the women on their toes! Depending on the perspective, the weather got better for the men's races when some warm sun shined through the clouds, encouraging many of the male skiers to hike up their race tights and sleeves and toss their useless headbands in the 45º conditions. The Dartmouth races were so crowded with friends, fans and family that many spectators resorted to the elementary school parking lot just a 10 minute walk up the road.
The women completed two 5k loops for their freestyle 10k race today, beginning at 9:30 am. Interval starts were separated by 30 seconds which bought skiers some time to feel out the snow before the following competitors could possibly catch them. Lina Sutro (UVM) reigned in her fourth first-place spot for the 2019 nordic season with a time of 30:04, with 15 seconds on Dartmouth skier Katharine Odgen in second place. Lauren Jortberg (DAR) worked hard for third place, demonstrating her consistent and successful efforts to place top 10. Jortberg noted it "was awesome to be on my home course because I know the course so well. I really like the course and I think it's a good course for me even though I did actually fall." Congratulations to Jortberg, who despite falling, still earned third place out of 85 other collegiate skiers. The Dartmouth women's coach noted that as the home team they had the advantage of knowing not only the course, but the transitions most effective for the course." Teammate Lydia Blanchet (DAR) earned fourth place with UVM skier Margie Freed just one second behind her (5th).
Colby skier Marin Coletta earned 6th place, and noted she wanted to ski "strong and smooth and crush the last straight away" as their alpine teammates were cheering along the course. Molly Gellert (DAR) scored 7th with Annika Landis (MID) less than one second behind her. Taryn Hunt-Smith finished in 9th place for another top 10 finish and teammate Leah came in Brams in 10th. Top scorer for Colby was Cal Waichler in 12th place and top finisher for Bowdoin was Renae Anderson in 14th place.
The men's race could not be compared the women's race, as temperatures and conditions varied greatly when the weather changed so drastically. Colby skier Zane Fields proved his grit for the grind and earned first place in the men's 15k race in the slushy sloshy snow. Fields finished with a time of 43:32, a notable one minute and 30 seconds faster than second place finisher Karl Schulz from UVM with a time of 45:02. Fields was the first racer to steel the men's first place trophy from a UVM skier this season, third place was still taken by a UVM skier Finn O'Connell who was only 8 seconds behind Karl Schulz.
Coming in fourth place was Braden Becker for Williams College. Becker mentioned he started to over heat during the race because the sun had finally come out, he described the snow as "chopped up" and added it"made it feel like you were going to just stop especially in the field portion of the course". Sam Wood placed 5th for Middlebury and Henry Harmeyer (UVM) hammered in 6th place. Six seconds behind Harmeyer was Ben Ogden (7th; UVM), and one second behind him was Ian Moore (8th; UVM). Callan Deline came in 9th place for home team Dartmouth, the team top finisher with a time if 45:49. Another Williams skier slid into top ten named Jack Consenstein just three seconds after Deline.
Congratulations to all EISA racers for conquering such challenging course conditions as well as 10k and 15k races! On to the relay races tomorrow with a forecasted windy 25º day. Let's see how and if working in teams changes everything up!