UVM Carnival - the Hills Are Alive
Updated: Feb 2, 2019
The long-distance races started off smoothly this morning with the women's 15k classic race. The temperature was heart-stoppingly cold for the beginning of the women's race, starting at 5º, then during the men's race spectators and racers experienced the heat of the day of 18º. The sun beamed down on the rolling hills of the Trapp Family Lodge Cross Country Ski Resort in Stowe, VT and warmed up the tracks for the men's 20k classic race. The snow conditions notably improved from yesterday's slow corduroy pow, giving racers something to look forward to along with finishing the classic races.
Anna Bizyukova crossed the finish line first for the women's mass start 15k classic race with a time of 50:20. Bizyukova said it wasn't the course that allowed her to do so well today, but the fitness of her body as well as having the opportunity to ski the race with her teammates. Bizyukova said "it was her plan" to finish first, however, she didn't notice she was in first place until she heard the announcement. Bizyukova wasn't thinking "what place am I in right now?" She just thought, "I have to keep going. Please legs, keep going."
In second place for Dartmouth was Lauren Jortberg, placing in the top 10 yet another time this season. Annika Landis (MID) took third place, and Margie Free and Lina Sutro (both UVM) took fourth and fifth. Lydia Blanchet (DAR) and Lizzie Larkins (UVM) earned six and seventh place. Kaelyn Woods represented Bates in the top ten, scoring 9th place with a time of 52:08. Also representing their teams were Gabrielle Vandendries (11th, BOW), Marin Coletta (CBC) and Sonya Jampel (WIL). Jampel was happy with her race today, noting she was "hyped" the Williams women placed fourth both days this weekend, which is their team-best this season. The Williams women's team is hoping for third place in next weekend's races, so watch out Middlebury!
The men's team kicked off their 20k classic race with a mass start, where several people broke poles and were scrambled into the mix of racers. Ben Odgen reigned in his third first-place finish with a time of 59:35. Odgen noted he focused on not going out too fast or prematurely in the mass start, as"any falls, poles broken, or damaged equipment can really change the outcome of your race." Teammate Matias Oevrum was 6 seconds behind, and another 6 seconds behind was Ian Moore (UVM) for a season-best finish of third place. Henry Harmeyer (UVM, 4th place) sprang in front of Bill Harmeyer (UVM, 6th place) in todays race for the first time this season with a time of 59:53. UVM teammate Juri Miosga was sandwiched between the Harmeyer's for fifth place just two seconds behind Henry Harmeyer and fourth place.
Julien Lamoureux earned 7th place with a time of 59:58 and was the highest-placing Laval athlete for both teams today. Lamoureux mentioned he "was looking around at the pack of UVM skiers around him and saw they were running on their skis" so he focused on "keeping his strides long and controlled" as he stuck with the overwhelming pack of Catamounts ahead of him. Finn O'Connell raced well and earned 8th place with Colby skier Zane Fields a second behind him in 9th position. Sam Wood (MID) came in 10th, and James Kitch (HAR) and Nick Gardner (WIL) battled it out for 11th and 12th place leaving .7 seconds between their finishing lunges.
Shout out to UMPI skier Irina Norkin for representing UMAINE by herself!! It's not easy training by yourself, "but having two coaches and an AT all for you makes it worth it when I see how much they want to be here and to help me."
Awesome job to all the skiers, wax-techs, fans and spectators who braved the Stowe, VT conditions the first two days of February at the Trapp Family Lodge. See you at the Dartmouth Carnival next week!