Young ski team competes at Hockley event

February 16, 2018   ·   0 Comments

By Brian Lockhart

Six member of the U12 Hockley Racers competed against teams representing other Ontario ski centres during Southern Ontario Development Cup (SOD) racing at the Hockley Valley resort on Saturday, February 10.

Team members Lauren Holland and Sarah Davis represent the female athletes on the Hockley team and competed against 25 skiers on other teams at the event.

Male skiers, Jack Aston-Blough, Owen Fitzpatrick, Brydon Holland, and Keenan Ferguson, were up against 46 other racers in their division.

Coach Andrew Payne, himself a former racer, has been working with the team for two years.

“The kids on our team are all ten and 11 years old with one kid (Brydon Holland) skiing up a level,” Payne explained. “We train three days a week. We train Thursday night’s because we have the lights and four hours training on the weekends. We started dry-land training in October. A lot of it is physical training but part of it is developing the mindset.”

Payne said getting the athletes prepared to go on the slopes is just as important as the first time they get out there for the season.

The race featured ‘kombi’ style racing that combines elements of slalom and giant slalom events.

Gates are placed closer together or farther apart on the slope forcing skiers to adjust to course as they race down the hill.

Times are marked with the start when a skier brakes through the wand at the top of the hill and the finish when crossing a beam at the bottom of the hill.

Skiers are allowed two runs with the combination of the two times being their score for the day.

Payne was pleased with the teams results at the end of the day.

Lauren Holland and Brydon Holland both finished in the top ten in their divisions.

Teams will compete in four races during the season with each event hosted by a competing ski area in Ontario.

Depending on a team’s final results they can be eligible to continue on for post season events.

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