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  • Writer's pictureQuincy Massey-Bierman

Middlebury Carnival (Regionals) Nordic Day 1

The Rikert Nordic Center hosted the EISA for the Middlebury Carnival and Regional Championships. This is the final weekend of normal season racing and the last chance to qualify for the NCAA Championships in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. This last weekend of carnival racing did not let the racers go without a fight. Warm temperatures combined with a light amount of fresh, natural snow (except last weekend, something that's been rare this season). Rikert staff crafted a 2.5k loop with solid coverage, but the weather led to draggy snow that pushed back against skiers, especially in the fields. Skiers raced three laps of the course for a 7.5k Freestyle event.

Cheering on the A-climb was electric at the Middlebury Carnival. Clara Wyatt from St. Michaels tackles the hill, cheered on by adoring fans (photo courtesy Phoebe Hussey).


The field was reverse-seeded, so viewers were left in suspense throughout the morning as to who our podium would be. Separated by thirty-second intervals, fifty-nine men started, but only one finished on top. John Steel Hagenbuch returned to the circuit this weekend with an impressive forty-second lead over the field. In second was his Dartmouth teammate Jack Lange, who helped secure a Men's team win along with fifth-place Cameron Wolfe. In third place was UVM skier Bjorn Westervelt. This is Westervelt's first podium of the season, but it comes as no surprise it was in a Freestyle event, as he competes in biathlon (the extra weight perhaps serving as a drag suit usually). Close behind him was fellow UVM skier Finn Sweet in fourth joined by Owen Young in ninth, adding substantially to the Catamount's second-place team finish. Colby College fielded the third place Men's team, led by sixth-place Jack Young, fresh of his World Cup debut. He was joined by Zach Nemeth in eleventh and Ben Lewis in the seventeenth spot.

Bjorn Westervelt on route to third place during the 7.5 Freestyle race at the Rikert Nordic Center (photo courtesy John McColgan).


The day warmed up as the women's race began. Haley Brewster continued her outstanding streak of winning every carnival race she has participated in this season. Her teammates Annie McColgan in fifth and Camille Bolduc in eleventh completed the winning UVM team. Only ten seconds behind Brewster was our second-place finisher Emma Crum from Bowdoin. Crum and the entire Bowdoin team have been having a great season this year. With Jori Grialou in eighth and Morgan Richter in tenth, they secured a second-place team score on Day 1 of the Middlebury Carnival. Jasmine Drolet returned to the EISA with a third-place finish, only ten seconds off of second. She led the Dartmouth women to the same team score, third, joined by Ava Thurston in sixth and Tatum Witter in thirteenth.

Haley Brewster from UVM, Elizabeth Graziani from Middlebury, and Gretta Scholz from Colby all compete in the Middlebury Carnival (photos courtesy John McColgan and Phoebe Hussey).

Middlebury superfan Caio Brown showing his undying support for the home team on the biggest hill of the course.

They say time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana. Feast yourself on one last race with

the upcoming Day 2 of the Middlebury Carnival!



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