STRATTON MOUNTAIN >> Recently recognized as the country's top all-women ski and snowboard programs by The Boston Globe, Stratton Mountain's Women on Snow and Burton Girl's Time Out camps return for five more installments as winter revs up in southern Vermont.
Adult women seeking guidance on the slopes can turn to Stratton's camps, where skiers and snowboarders "enjoy the comradery of fellow gal pals as [they] learn new skills and maximize existing ones in [a] relaxed and non-intimidating environment," said Boston Globe Correspondent Necee Regis.
Coached by Stratton's elite women instructors, ladies can perfect their ski turns at the Women on Snow camps, held once per month through the end of the winter season.
"I've been skiing since childhood. The Stratton women's camp helped me understand the mechanics of a comfortable turn and changed the way I perform on skis. I'm more confident and relaxed. It was 3 blissful days of skiing with nice women, good food, and camaraderie," said Emily Sonnenblick.
Women will receive personalized tips to improve snowboarding skills ranging from laying down turns on corduroy to conquering the terrain park at the Burton Girl's Time Out camps, held three more weekends in January, February and March. Perks of both camps include access to the Training & Fitness Center, entry to evening live music events, raffle prizes and ski/board tuning and demos.
"Stratton, in particular, is a really inviting environment that makes newcomers feel as at ease about taking to the slopes as the regulars do," said first-time skier Leda Olia.
Stratton's Women on Snow and Girl's Time Out camps are designed by women, for women, and welcome all ability levels. To learn more about Stratton's women ski and snowboard programs, visit stratton.com.
Vermonters Caldwell, Sargent lead U.S. in Nordic team sprint
PLANICA, SLOVENIA >> Peru's Sophie Caldwell and Orleans' Ida Sargent led the U.S. with a fifth-place finish in the World Cup 1.2k freestyle team sprints on Sunday.
"Ida and I have done three team sprints together, and this is our best result yet," Caldwell said. "We're picking our way to that podium!"
Sweden's team one of Stina Nilsson and Ida Ingemarsdotter won the women's race with Norway's team one of Heidi Weng and Astrid Jacobsen second, and Germany's team one of Sandra Ringwald and Hanna Kolb third. For the men, Italy's team one of Federico Pellegrino and Dietmar Noeckler took the victory. France's team one of Renaud Jay and Baptiste Gros were second, followed by France's team two of Valentin Chauvin and Richard Jouve third.
The U.S. qualified two out of the three teams in the semifinals. Caldwell and Sargent skied tactically by making great moves throughout the legs to qualify second in heat B, securing a spot in the finals. Simi Hamilton and Shaftsbury's Andy Newell qualified fourth in an extremely competitive heat, allowing them to advance as lucky losers to the finals.
"The men's semifinals were bitterly contested with many teams fighting for hundredths of a second to make it through to the finals," said coach Chris Grover. "Andy and Simi skied really well, avoiding trouble and staying close to the front. On the final leg, Simi had to sprint for the finish with seven other teams, and finished fourth, less than one second from first and fast enough to secure a lucky loser position."
In the finals, Sargent and Caldwell shifted between fifth and sixth throughout the exchanges in the sprint. The heat stuck close together until Norway's Weng began lengthening the gap on her second leg. In the final leg, despite not being able to close the gap, Caldwell was able to power through and overtake Norway team two to secure a fifth-place finish.
"The top nations put in some big moves that were hard to chase, but we tried our best and maintained our position," Caldwell said. "Team sprinting is tricky because if you ever push too hard, you could implode and move backwards quickly, so the pacing and moves are really strategic and I think we both did a great job and skied to the best of our abilities today."
Hamilton and Newell were well on their way to a top-10 finish when they got tangled up in the exchange zone with one of the Norwegian teams who changed direction at the last second. Unfortunately, Hamilton and Newell failed to make contact before the tag zone ended, resulting in a disqualification.