UVM's Ogden and Middlebury's Laukli take opening nordic wins at Colby Carnival
2020 EISA Carnival action heads to Maine for midseason races, with the Colby Carnival this weekend and Bates Carnival next weekend. Waterville, Maine's Quarry Road Trails were particularly impacted by the midwinter warming pattern that devastated east coast snowpack. As a result, races are being held on a 2.7k manmade loop. Despite the atrocious January weather, the loop has held up well and made for great skiing.
Racing got underway with the men's 10k (10.8k, to be exact) at 10:00 am. With timing splits taken on each of the three laps, spectators had plenty of info on how the interval start race was unfolding. Almost from the start, it was clear the UVM Catamounts were putting together a special race. Catamount standout Bill Harmeyer took an early lead at 2.7k, covering the first quarter of the race in 6:03.4. His mark would later be eclipsed by teammate Ben Ogden, who flew through the first lap in just 5:47.2.
Ogden never looked back, expanding his lead to a huge 46 seconds by the finish line. He was followed by teammates Karl Schulz, Bill Harmeyer, Ian Moore, and Finn O'Connell in second, third, fifth, and sixth, respectively. The only injunction on UVM's perfect day was UNH first-year Scott Schulz, who continued his strong debut carnival season with a fourth place, just .2 seconds down on Harmeyer for the final spot on the podium.
The Catamount clean sweep gave UVM a perfect 141 points on the day. They were followed by Bowdoin with 99 points and UNH with 98 points.
As the day continued to warm through the women's noon start, the snow sugared up and slowed down a bit. It stayed safe and skiable, making the short loop's signature S-Turns more exciting than terrifying.
Just like in last week's skate showdown at the UVM carnival, four skiers had separated themselves from the (virtual) pack at the halfway mark. Middlebury's Sophia Laukli led with a 6:39.4 first lap, but Dartmouth's Katherine Ogden, UVM's Lina Sutro, and fellow Panther Alex Lawson were hot on her heels, all coming in under 6:49.
After another lap around the white ribbon, Laukli's lead held up and she captured her second carnival win in as many races. Ogden finished second, and Sutro edged out Lawson for the podium's final spot by just .6 seconds.
UVM's Margie Freed finished fifth, helping the Catamount women take the win in an incredibly close team race. The Catamount women amassed 116 points, Middlebury was right behind with 114, and Dartmouth took third with 113 points.
After the first day of nordic action, UVM is on top with 257 points. Middlebury sits in second with 202 points, and Dartmouth and Bowdoin are locked in a battle for third place, with 176 and 175 points respectively.
Full results, including split times, are available here: