Dry skies have stamped a slow start to the 2011-2012 season. But with a lot of help from the lakes of Mammoth, cold temps blasted a base strong enough to hold eight slalom sets at Mammoth Mountain for the season opener. Steep pitches, fast flats, quick combos, and a slick surface made for an exciting opening series.
The weekend was packed with great results from many of our Far West athletes- and even some athletes from the East Coast, as Killington Mountain School joined in on Day One. Morganne Murphy took back-to-back wins, with Sierra Nevada College skiers and first year J2s, Julia Cashell and Dianna Abbott, fast on her tails. On the men’s side, Sierra Nevada dominated the podium, setting a great example for all our athletes and inspiring thrilling skiing out of some young guns, like Garrett Driller, Pieter Weemaes, and Jordan Cashman. For the youngest athletes on the hill, it was a weekend of hard fought battles on a steep, slick hill, competing against skiers twice their size. Strong results from Luke Rodarte and Oscar Halliwell on the boy’s side; and on the girl’s side, Amanda Pretti and Annika Hansen took the top spots two days in a row, with stirring top-ten results out of second year J3s Francesca English, Stephanie Lebby, and Maia Bickert.
As older Far West athletes hop on a plane bound for a twenty-below Alaska, the younger athletes will continue their season preparations at home. Fingers are crossed for more snow and more terrain, but for now, it was a great start to the season at Mammoth Mountain.
Thanks to the Mammoth Mountain Race Department and all the volunteers for hosting a wonderful opening weekend.
Here is a link to pictures from the weekend: