Ski Report, Sports

Craftsbury’s Anika Leahy Wins High School Meet

photo by Eric Hanson
Craftsbury Academy graduate and UVM student, Finn Sweet (13), skis to 2nd place in his quarterfinal sprint. John Steel Hagenbuch (Dartmouth) (left) would go on to win the quarterfinal, semifinal, and final.

CRAFTSBURY – Over 80 JV and Varsity cross country skiers took to the trails last week on January 9, for a high school ski race hosted by Craftsbury Academy (CA). In the JV boys race, Xavier Chapdelaine (Lake region skiing with CA) had the fastest time 9:07 in the boys group, and Addie Pearl (St. Johnsbury) was first in the girls race.

Sisu Lange (St. Johnsbury) won his second race in a week in 13:04 over the two lap course. Zeb Whitlock (Lamoille Union) was 2nd followed by Magnus Hayden (Peoples Academy). Max Demaine (Lake Region skiing with CA) was 5th, Silas Hunt (CA) 8th, and Soren Stelma-Leonard (CA) 11th. Anika Leahy (CA) was back from skiing as a junior at U.S. Nationals in Utah and won the girls race in 14:32. Claire Serrano (U32) was 2nd with Tillie Lange (St. Johnsbury) close behind in 3rd.

UVM College Hosts First College Carnival at Craftsbury

CRAFTSBURY – The college ski racing season is underway with 11 full teams racing at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center this past weekend. About 90 women and 90 men participated along with hundreds of parents and fans. Friday’s glorious weather was perfect for a day of sprint racing. In the morning, all skiers raced in the 1.6 km qualifier with the top 30 moving on to the quarterfinals consisting of five heats with six skiers racing head to head. The top two skiers from each heat move onto the next round.

photo by Eric Hanson
North Country Union graduate and Colby College student, Jack Young (7), takes off at the start of his quarterfinal with five other racers. Young placed 3rd in the heat and did not move on to the semifinal.

After four rounds of racing, it was Haley Brewster (UVM) eeking out a win ahead of Ava Thurston (Dartmouth, Harwood Union graduate). Haley was a U.S. National Champion 10 days ago in Utah. Nina Seeman (Dartmouth, home residence Craftsbury) placed 5th, and CA graduate Camille Bolduc (UVM) made it to the quarterfinals finishing 29th.

On the men’s side, recently-crowned U.S. National Champion, John Steel Hagenbuch (Dartmouth), finished 0.3 seconds ahead of Remi Drolet (Harvard/Canadian Olympian) in the final. CA graduate, Finn Sweet (UVM), skied to a surprisingly good sprint result of 9th. Sweet is more known for his distance racing. Another CA graduate, Aiden Casey (Dartmouth), finished 47th. Jack Young (Colby), a North Country Union graduate and Craftsbury Ski Club member, finished 13th on the day.

photo by Eric Hanson
Craftsbury Academy graduate and UVM student, Camille Bolduc, races in the 10 km freestyle race in the rain on Saturday.

On Saturday, events were postponed an hour to 11 a.m. because of the forecast for 30-40 mph winds, but luckily Craftsbury was missed again by the bulk of high winds this past week. However, just as the women’s races started, the rains came down. Thirty-five degrees and pouring rain did not stop anyone. Haley Brewster (UVM) showed why she was a U.S. national champion, winning the 10 km race with four laps around a hilly 2.5 km course in 28:00. Jasmine Drolet (Dartmouth) finished 2nd 16 seconds later followed by Lucinda Anderson (UNH). Camille Bolduc (UVM) placed 33rd.

In the men’s 10 km freestyle race, Hagenbuch came out on top in 25:06 with Dartmouth teammate, Jack Lange, 2nd, and Remi Drolet (Harvard) 3rd. Jack Young (Colby) had his best distance race ever on the college circuit finishing 5th. Finn Sweet who is recovering from a cold finished back in 24th. Sweet had numerous top five finishes in eastern college racing last season.

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