Sunny skies and warm October weather greeted race organizers and skiers for the Mt. Kearsarge Rollerski Time Trail Series up in Warner, New Hampshire. Organizers suffered a slight setback as fallen trees block the road halfway up the mountain, which forced them to move the start down the road for a 2.4 mile climb. Skiers were invited to use either skate or classic techniques to scale the eight percent average grades.
The series is hosted by the Cambridge Sports Union (CSU), as a way get their junior athletes ready for New England Nordic Ski Association (NENSA) races.
“It’s built around the [Junior Olympic] kids,” said race director John LaChance. “We don’t exactly have glaciers nearby to train on, so this is a great way to get our athletes ready for their first NENSA race.”
“It’s really fun,” said CSU skier and junior men’s winner Hamish McEwen. “It’s just before the ski season… it’s great to have a rollerski race to get ready for the snow.”
McEwen was the first classic skier across the finish line in a time of 19:46, 44 seconds after men’s overall winner Dave Cahill. CSU’s Hannah Smith was the first female overall to finish in a time of 22:57 on classic rollerskis. Full results and photos can be found here.
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Ben Theyerl was born into a family now three-generations into nordic ski racing in the US. He grew up skiing for Chippewa Valley Nordic in his native Eau Claire, Wisconsin, before spending four years racing for Colby College in Maine. He currently mixes writing and skiing while based out of Crested Butte, CO, where he coaches the best group of high schoolers one could hope to find.