Asit Rathod knows Mount Hood.
Editor's Note: Shred Hood Correspondent Robin Cressy was on the scene for Day Two of the Oregon Championship Ski Races at Mt. Ashland, and he filed this report from his motel room in between the races and the awards dinner. Congratulations to all on another excellent year of high school ski racing in Oregon!
High overcast, cool temps and a little windy first thing in the morning for the last day of racing. There was chatter about possible rain showers in the forecast for the afternoon, so the hope was to be done racing before that might happen.
The girls GS got going around 10 o'clock. Winds mellowed out and we were ready for action. Spirits were high, girls were cheerful, some were singing....but somebody was missing. Yesterday's girls slalom winner, Sami Woodring, from OES, injured her knee on the way to the chairlift in a freak accident. Hopefully her injury is minimal, but it was enough to keep her off the race hill today. (I caught up with her later on at the awards ceremony and she told me she doesn't think she'll need surgery: "I hit some chunks, my patella got dislocated so I'm hoping nothing else is too messed up down there. But yeah, a little hard for the day. But you know what can happen with skiing so, you just have to move on."
Jesuit senior Molly Jansky said this minutes before her final high school race: "I'm ready! Sad, but ready to kill it and have fun."
The race itself was exciting: Fast course, a little bumpy in spots, a real leg burner.
Over at the boys slalom for the 2nd run, it was a relaxed atmosphere in the start area. Kids were kicking back, eating lunch, tossing a few snowballs. A few girls stopped by to hang out with the boys while their 2nd run course was being set some 40 yards away. I watched most of the top seeds from the top of the course, lots of excellent skiing going on!
As per usual, slalom ate up a chunk of the racers.
Kids were going for it. I watched Sunset HS senior Mac Heffernan hook at tip and take a good tumble about half way down the course, a tough ending to his 4-year high school racing career. And this being the final day of this event, it was a little emotional for the graduating seniors as they completed their 2nd runs. Ellie Freeman, a senior from Tigard HS described it as "bitter sweet".
When Emelyn Roberts, from OES, came thru the finish line for her final high school race EVER, she said it feels "weird......a little bizarre... I feel like I should be going to the mountain next weekend." Lots of hugging and high-5's in the finish area as the racers made their way out of the finish corral...
Anyhow, the race ended. No rain! A few people were planning to bail for home immediately after the race, while others were headed back to town to get ready for tonight's closing ceremony, slide show, and awards presentation over at the Historic Ashland Armory. I'm headed that direction myself.
In the end, the hometown favorites from Ashland took first in overall combined, followed by Hood River, Jesuit and West Linn.
Here are the final results for boys slalom and girls giant slalom, plus individual and team combined. Full results can be found at the OISRA website:
Robin Cressy is a ski coach, videographer and photographer who has been involved in Oregon racing year-round for a long time. He will be producing a documentary about the 2016 Oregon State Alpine Racing Championships in Ashland, so stay tuned.