Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Skiing moguls, getting air and staying warm

Freestylers heat it up in Montana

It was a big weekend for Sun Valley Freestyle Team members in divisional action at Snowbowl in Missoula, Mt.

Racers from the Northern and Intermountain Divisions vied for supremacy in moguls, slopestyle, aerial and dual mogul events. After performing well, the second priority was staying warm, as temperatures dipped well below zero.

"It was colder than heck," coach John Zuck said.

Luckily his racers were hot.

Katie Fieguth, 17, won Sunday's dual mogul event and was the first J1 and second overall in Saturday's two-run single moguls. She was third overall in Sunday's single moguls.

Other age class champions in moguls were Aunika Phillips (J3), Nic Hanscom (MS), Joey Richardson (J4) and Wyatt Wilson (J5). Second-pace finishers were Hannah Haupt (J3), Ross Falcone (J1) and Austin Bourret (J2). Zana Davey, Lauren Phillips and Kurtis Fieguth were top 10 overall.

Ross Falcone was very consistent across the board with a win in aerials. Lauren Phillips and Zana Davey went 1-2 in women's aerials. The Sun Valley girls were the only two girls to launch off the jump, but Zuck understood why.

"Those jumps are huge. I wouldn't go off of them," Zuck said. "Eric Bergoust, the Olympic gold medalist built them."

Austin Bourret (4th place) was the first J2 in aerials and Austin Moses (5th) was second. Nathan Moses (8th) won J3s.

In the big air/slopestyle competition, Phillips and Davey were 1-2 again. Falcone was second overall. In the J2 class, Bourret was first and Moses third. Nathan Moses was the second J3.

"I was impressed with all of them," Zuck said.

Next up for the Sun Valley racers is single and dual moguls at Deer Valley, Utah, Jan. 20-21. The local kids will be on the same World Cup course where Americans Nate Roberts and Shannon Bahrke won gold medals last Thursday.

"It's one of the steepest and longest courses on the World Cup tour," Zuck said.

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