UAF newcomer Raphaela Sieber smoked the women’s field and Alaska Nanook Erik Soderstrom topped the men in the only USSA race held this weekend at Birch Hill.
The USSA portion of Saturday’s race was called due to the below USSA-legal temperatures of -20C — it was -18F to -19F most of the day yesterday, well below the cutoff. However, a serious warming trend started in about midnight Saturday night, and a strong inversion set in to boot, yielding temperatures in the above-zero Fahrenheit range.
The first group out was the J2 boys 5Km, where Kuba Grzeda (FAST/West Valley HS) handily beat Erich Hoefler (FAST/FJN) by 32 seconds. Brandon Kowalski (FXC/NSCF/West Valley HS) was third.
Sieber, who had excellent FIS points coming into the race, strutted her stuff, topping Alaska Nanook teammate and fellow Deutschlander Teresia “TeTe” Schnurr 16:22.4 to 17:09.7. Sieber will not race for the Nanooks this season, but will be eligible in 2010-2011.
Julia Pierson a UAF student not using eligibility this season was third in 17:27.9, and UAF redshirt Marit Rjabov was fourth, one-tenth behind Pierson. Pierson’s sister Anna Coulter, skiing for the Nanooks was fifth only 1.3 seconds behind Rjabov.
Class winners for women were: J2 – Mikayla Hamlin (FXC/NSCF/Lathrop HS) 20:03.9; J1 – Hannah Boyer (FXC/NSCF/West Valley HS) 18:28.4; OJ – Heather Edic (Unaffiliated/UAF student).
The men’s race was quite exciting with the skiers battling for positions throughout. Eric Soderstrom (Alaska Nanooks) started last in the field and swept up the three skiers who started right in front of him: John Parry (Alaska Nanooks), Einar Often (Alaska Nanooks) and redshirt freshman Tyler Kornfield.
This worked out great for Parry, who was able to hang with Soderstrom (29:15.8) all the way to the end, being towed to a runner-up finish (29:36.9) in the process. Kornfield also kept up after being caught, which helped pull him to fourth overall (30:03.5). Often couldn’t hanle the pace and ended up sixth.
Henry Soom (Alaska Nanooks), who started at the front of the field had a super performance skiing much of the race by himself with no split times. In his first race in over a year (injury problems kept him from competing last season) he was third overall (30:01.2).
Fifth place was taken by Logan Hanneman (FAST/Lathrop HS) who was keeping up with the top group throughout most of the race.
Class winners: J1 – Logan Hanneman 30:15.2; OJ – Tyler Kornfield; M5 – Bill Parry (Whitehorse Ski Club) 38:54.2.
The interval start (15-second intervals), classic technique race had 40 entries. Skiers were seeded by their USSA distance points, with the skiers with the best points going last. Penalties were 96.35 for women and 87.45 for men. Results in text format are below. PDF results are available on the web. Click on “Race Info” on the left and follow the links.
Following the race, at 2:30PM, will be the first annual “Too Stuffed To Trot” skier parade, a short (2Km) promenade for anyone who is interested in skiing without having to race or be timed (or pay an entry fee). Costumes are encouraged. Contact event organizer Chris Broda, 488-9298 for more information about “Too Stuffed To Trot.”