Reflections and Thoughts Looking Forward
I hope this message finds you and your families healthy and active. To say that the last couple months did not go as expected would be an understatement. We spent the final days of the 2019-2020 race season in a flurry (not the snow kind) of mid-event cancellation announcements. We got in some speed training and 2 SG races prepping for Nationals, but were ultimately forced to cancel all National Championship events with some people already on site, others enroute, and many at the ready with bags packed or already shipped. Winter travel and events always comes with a certain level of uncertainty, but global pandemic was definitely not on our bingo card.
For me personally, those last few days at Ski Cooper will be an experience I will remember. The nervous yet effervescent energy and passion expressed for our sport and our community over those few days was memorable. It was a rollercoaster of emotions, but we were all on the same ride -- so we metaphorically held hands (because physical hand holding had just been outlawed...) and laughed, elbow-bumped, and foot-fived our way through it. We were simultaneously learning and adapting together to whatever the new normal was per the changes announced in the last 48, 24, or even 12 hours.
Though we are physically pushed apart, the race community and Masters community has continued to pull together - communicating through various social media and division emails how we can support our local race shops, clubs, and communities. Many athletes and coaches have been sharing work outs and work out tips online to keep us dryland training. The Googles For Docs Program donated goggles for first responders is still accepting donations. Spring planning meetings quickly transitioned to a digital format with the vibe as eager as ever to start planning for the 2020-2021 season. U.S. Ski & Snowboard just had the first in a series of Town Hall events to help race organizers navigate the challenges with COVID-19.
Looking forward, a lot of uncertainty remains. Meri unfortunately had to recently announce the cancellation of Summer Fun Nationals. A 100 person event is not yet feasible. Training camps are moving forward, so be sure to continue reading to see several options for the summer at Mt. Hood and a fall South American Camp in conjunction with the FIS Masters races in Bariloche, Argentina. As we haven't even reached the first day of summer yet, it is still unknown how things will change over the next few months and where we will be come winter. Rest assured your national and division leaders are planning for a full winter of racing and preparing for the ways in which we may need to be adaptable to manage the challenges presented by COVID-19. In the meantime, keep up your dryland training, get that summer wax on your skis, and keep planning for your next arched turns on snow. ...and if you're able to get some summer runs on skis, take some runs for all of us!
Summer Fun Nationals Canceled, Mt. Hood Training Opportunities Still Available
We are sad to report that the 2020 event must be canceled. The restrictions currently in place for COVID-19 do not for allow for a large race event. A big thank you to Meri Stratton for all her work on planning this year's event and for the past 31 years. It is truly a labor of love for our sport and the masters community. We look forward to the 32nd Annual SFN in 2021!
There are still several summer camps running this summer at Timberline. Here's a listing for the next few months. If you make it to Mt. Hood, be sure to stop by and say hi to Fuxi in Government Camp!
Mt. Hood, OR
ADL Mahre Camp - June 26-28
Willy Camp - June 22-26, June 29-July 2, July 6-10, July 13-17, July 20-24
Party Beach Ski Camps - July 9-12
Tichy Race Camps - June 16-23, June 23-30, June 30-July 7, July 7-14, July 14-21, July 21-28, July 28-Aug 4, Aug 4-11, Aug 11-18
GTI Sports - June 11-17, August 11-16
Ligety Weibrecht Ski Camp - June 16-20, June 22-26, June 28-July 2
Check out the Training Page for info on an August indoor training camps in the Netherlands as well as a full lineup of fall and winter camps. Information on the South America FIS camp is also on the training page and below in the FIS section.
National Speed Series Results & Winners
The 2020 Phillips 66 National Speed Series overall champions are the top competitor in the overall group rankings for each of the Group A/B (age 18-64) men, Group C women, and Group D (age 65+) men based on total world cup points accumulated in the all races of the series. Races were held at Sun Valley, Stratton, Mammoth, Aspen Highlands, Northstar, Granite Peak, West Mountain, and Schweitzer. Prior to the cancelations we had a record 22 speed series races on the schedule! (Our previous record was 20.) Park City races were canceled due to weather and races at Ski Cooper, Steamboat, and Mt. Bachelor were canceled due to developments with COVID-19.
Competitors must have at least three starts to be eligible for series awards. With 1/3 of the planned NSS races canceled, many classes would not have met the three-race minimum starts eligibility rule for series awards. Given these unprecedented circumstances, the Division Chairs voted unanimously to adjust the eligibility rule for 2020 as follows: Racers who met the three-race eligibility rule were scored first for both class and overall finish places. Racers with two starts were then added to complete the series awards finish order for both class and overall positions. See the links below for the full group and age class standing results. Belt Buckles are being sent to division leaders for distribution.
You can find more information on the National Speed Series webpage including an archive link for previous season information and results. You can also check out the searchable spreadsheet of previous season results for the National Speed Series and all Regional and National events and awards.
National Committee Chair Transition
Lisa Ballard (Northern Division, W07) displaying her thank you gift from the masters - a steel medal hanger that says "Masters Ski Racing"!
Of the many things we missed out on when we lost the National Championships, was the opportunity to announce in person that after 5 years of exemplary service and passionate leadership of the National Masters Committee, Lisa Ballard is stepping down. For those of you unfamiliar with the position, the Chair works with and guides the division chairs through initiatives to help grow and enhance the Masters experience. Lisa kick started her time as chair with a vision for masters racing. Lisa initiated a series of phone meetings each summer with all the division chairs to discuss how our divisions operate to exchange ideas and learn from each other. Lisa continues to be an advocate for masters and masters racing through her camps, writing, and of course participation in masters! Thank you Lisa!
2021 Phillips 66 Major Event Announcements
Mark your calendars!
FIS Masters Cup/Western Region Championships
Beaver Creek, Avon, CO - February 5-7 - 2SG, 2(1-run)GS, SL
Sun Valley, Sun Valley, ID - March 15-19 - AC/SC/GS/SL
We are still working on the Eastern Regional Championships and National DH and will update when we have more information.
Masters FIS Update
2020 FIS Overall Winners
With the season cut short, the FIS Masters were unable to hold the Finals where the globes and diplomas are traditionally awarded. Globes will likely need to be transported in the fall or next winter once they can be brought back via plane. They were able to get the diplomas posted, so they are able to be downloaded and printed! Congratulations to all the following USA racers for their INTERNATIONAL RANKING!!! Click to download FMC Overall Diplomas.
2021 FIS Preview
The 2020-2021 FIS Masters Calendar has been approved!
- The 1st events at Australia have been cancelled due to COVID.
- The South American races will be held this year at Catedral Alta Patagonia in Bariloche, Argentina! Lisa Ballard has put together another great camp preceding the 6 FMC races. The camp and events are September 9-20 South American Masters Race Camp Flier Register here.
- North America will have 2 events again this year!
- Beaver Creek, CO - February 5-7
- Stoneham, CAN. - February 11-14
Ski Racing Podcasts
Looking for some intersting ski racing realted media? Check out these ski racing podcasts. Ski Racing Media is still putting out weekly podcasts with great interviews and interesting content. In April, Cindy Berlack talked with Jimmy Krupka of Ski Racing Media to discuss the Brass Foundation's avalanche awareness initiatives and Masters Racing. Learn more about the Brass Foundation at brassfoundation.org.
Season Pass Renewal Discounts and Deadlines Coming Up
Some summary detail is provided on the multi-mountain pass changes here, but be sure to check their individual websites for the latest details and policies. If you trying to figure out what pass makes the most sense for you, check out the Season Pass Matrix which is sortable by resort, pass, division, available training, and races. The 2020-2021 races schedule is largely a work in progress, and will be updated as more information becomes available. The 2019-2020 races are listed for reference. Be sure to check division websites and emails for the latest updates.
Epic Pass Credits for renewing passholders will be valid through Labor Day, September 7, 2020. Epic Coverage for some personal reasons and COVID related closures. Military discount available.
Ikon Pass Renewal discounts available through Tuesday, June 16, 2020. Ability to defer pass purchase amount to 2021-2022 if unused. Adventure Assurance program refund plan if resorts close due to COVID-19. Discounts for nurses, college students, and military.
Indy Pass 50+ independent resorts across the U.S. that gives you 2 days at each resort. Option as a stand-alone pass or an add on to a participating resort season pass. Will go on sale 9/1. Offering a credit for 2021/2022 if you use the pass less than 4 days in 2020-2021.
Mountain Collective Two days at 23 participating resorts and 50% off additional days at those locations. Bonus 3rd day at a destination of your choice while supplies last. Customers may request a no questions asked refund for 2020-2021 at any time prior to October 16, 2020.
Powder Alliance Three days at all 19 resorts with the purchase of a season pass at one of the participating resorts. Some weekend and holiday restrictions and additional resort specific benefits.
MORE U.S. SKI & SNOWBOARD ATHLETE NEWS AND INFORMATION
U.S. Ski & Snowboard provides news and information for all sport disciplines with a Weekly Update May through October; and a Daily Update throughout the competition season November through March. The Daily Update provides a quick recap of athlete and event results, upcoming events, TV and streaming schedules. To sign up for either the Weekly Update, Daily Update, or both, please click the Sign Up button below.
For questions and comments about this newsletter or the masters program contact:
U.S. Ski & Snowboard
Alpine Masters Manager
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