Shelden, Seeman post best state results for VMS
BRECKENRIDGE – Vail Mountain School senior Taylor Shelden crossed the finish line of the Colorado State High School Classic Nordic race Saturday in Breckenridge and collapsed.Sheldon finished in third place, and significantly contributed to the team result for VMS Nordic and alpine boys, who took fifth place overall. Aspen finished first, followed closely by Summit. Middle Park was third and Steamboat Springs fourth. The Eagle Valley High School boys took sixth and Battle Mountain seventh. For the latter half of the 5-kilometer course, Sheldon, who finished with a time of 15 minutes, 56.8 seconds, was battling for position with second-place finisher, Brandon Cooper (15:54.9) from Aspen and winner Marty Smith from Steamboat Springs (15:.43.3). Shelden coated his skis with slick wax before the race, which coincided with a blizzard. The choice of wax behooved him on the downhills, but put his arms to the test on the flat and uphill portions of the course at Gold Run Nordic Center.
“I didn’t have any kick, so I basically double-poled the whole thing,” Shelden said. “We went with slick wax. It paid off on the downhills. But otherwise … I guess you had to make some tradeoffs. The start was pretty harsh. Right from the beginning, it was challenging.”Shelden will be off to compete in Junior Nationals in two weeks, but was happy to end his high school skiing career on the podium.His teammate, fellow VMS senior Brad Bingham, took eighth Saturday with a time of 16:47.00.”It went pretty well,” Bingham said. “I think I’m better at the longer distances. I’m just not as fast over a short period.”Other top-30 Nordic finishers from Eagle County included Battle Mountain’s Grant Stevenson, who finished 18th and was followed closely by Bobby LeGaye of VMS. Eagle Valley’s James Ewing finished 22nd.
Seeman’s 19th best local result on courseKEYSTONE – As far as alpine boys results, Aspen’s Paul Britvar finished first in slalom on the Go Devil course at Keystone with a two-run combined time of 1:14.00. Middle Park’s Spencer Woolwine took silver in 1:14.3 and Josh Stuhr from Summit took bronze in 1:15.8.Mick Seeman of VMS put down the best result for Eagle County high schools. He finished 19th in 1:26.6. His teammates David Deline and Drew Riley finished 22nd and 23rd, respectively. Racers agreed that the second run course on Go Devil – a steep and icy black run at Keystone – while having tighter gates, was much smoother than the first-run course. Several racers had to hike up the course after missing gates during the first run.
“It was just such a more rhythmical run at the top,” said Seeman. “Then. you could just bomb it at the bottom. I feel like I did very well. I inspected a long time, and it worked well. I feel great.” Battle Mountain’s Jamie Hijams took 27th and, after hiking a gate in the first run, Eagle Valley’s Kyle Green took 31st in the final race of his high school skiing career. “I like courses that are a little tighter and have more rhythm to them,” Green said. “I hiked this morning, but it’s my last high school race, so I’m just glad I finished one standing up.”Vail, Colorado