Friday, March 23, 2012

Rixon, Fink-Debray go 1-2 in Jackson DH

Sun Valley pair collect top prizes

Sun Valley's Carl Rixon Jr. has successfully defended his Pro Men's title in the Jackson Town Downhill sponsored by the Jackson Hole Ski and Snowboard Club.

Racing in challenging course and weather conditions, Rixon won the $2,000 top prize of the 30th annual Mini-Hahnenkamm Jackson Hole Town Downhill on Sunday, March 18 at Snow King Ski Area.

Second place among Pro Men and $1,000 went to Sun Valley's Miles Fink-Debray. It was a very competitive Pro Men's field, in large part because the ski club doubled the prize money this year due to a grant of lodging tax money.

Rixon, who turns 30 on March 27, had the fastest first heat of 42.28 seconds and the second-best final run at 45.60 for a combined 1:27.88. Fink-Debray, 24, won the second run and finished his day with times of 43.07-45.31 for a 1:28.38 total. Fink-Debray had placed 24th in the 2012 U.S. National downhill Feb. 15 at Aspen, Colo.

According to the Jackson Hole News & Guide, several days of above-freezing nighttime temperatures made for a slick course and caused the cancellation of Saturday's training runs. New snow on the morning of the race followed by variable weather for the final run posed more challenges.

Rixon topped out at only 53 mph for his final run, the newspaper reported, whereas Town Downhill speeds generally exceed 60 mph.

Third-place went to three-time Town Downhill champion Travis Svensrud, 33, of Steamboat Springs, Colo. and Bozeman, Mont. at 1:28.68. The 2005-06 champion and former U.S. Ski Team racer pocketed $500.

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