Vail Town Race Series begins today with GS
The Helly Hansen Alpine Town Series enters its 52nd season on Golden Peak today with the giant slalom opener.
The local race series is open to all ages and ability levels across multiple disciplines for six days of racing on Vail Mountain followed by after-parties, award ceremonies and swag giveaways.
The six-part series, organized by Ski & Snowboard Club Vail, takes place on Thursdays on Golden Peak (plus the Black Forest Kombi) and culminates on March 26 with the Super George finale. The final race of the season also consists of a full-length super G for the top tier of finishers.
While it’s typical to see SSCV coaches, NCAA alumni and even former World Cup racers competing at the Town Series, all abilities are welcome and encouraged to participate. Racers should be at least comfortable skiing a groomed black run, but no prior racing experience is necessary.
The event is open to Alpine skiers, telemark skiers and snowboarders with men’s and women’s categories for each discipline. The men’s Alpine ski category is broken into sport and pro divisions. The pro division will generally feature experienced racers, while the sport division will host athletes with a more recreational level of experience.
For those who are apprehensive about kicking out of the start without proper training — or for anyone who just wants to take his or her racing skills to the next level — SSCV also offers the Get in the Gates recreational racing program. This is a flexible training program with SSCV coaches on Golden Peak. Participants can purchase a range of training opportunities, from single day to punch cards and season passes.
“The Get in the Gates recreational race program is one of the truly special opportunities SSCV provides to the community to make alpine ski racing more accessible to the average skier,” said SSCV communications manager Geoff Mintz. “The program caters to a wide range of experience levels, providing a la carte training opportunities to young athletes, former racers, part-time residents, masters racers — really anyone who wants to ‘Get in the Gates.’ Participants can then take what they’ve learned into the Town Series to see how they’re stacking up. Or if you just want to wing it, that’s cool, too.”
Each Town Series race features an after-party, hosted at various bars and restaurants in Vail Village. The party circulates to the George, Pazzos, the Red Lion and the Fitz. Drink tickets and appetizers are included with participation in the race. Prizes and some killer swag will be awarded to top finishers and participants at random.
Registration is available online and day-of at the race venue. The team entry fee into all six races (includes eight racers) is $400. Individuals can also participate for $20 per race and $100 for the series.
More information and online registration for the town series is available at http://www.vailtownseries.com. For more information about the Get in the Gates training program, visit skiclubvail.org/teams/get-in-the-gates.
For downvalley humans, it’s pretty cool when elk decide to hunker down around Eagle for the winter. For the elk, it’s more of a lesser-of-two-evils situation.