Friday, April 23


Interested in Racing? It’s Easy to get Involved and It’s a Great Way to Spend Your Winter! The 2020-21 season is just getting started and we are always recruiting racers! Keep reading so that you will be ready to join and see the “Outings” page for specific Race Details.

FAQs: What is the Racing Team All About?  How do I become a member of the W-SSOC Racing Team?  Do I have to be a fast racer?  How do the races work?

The W-SSOC Racing Team is one of the top teams in the Crescent Ski Council.  We dominated the Crescent Cup in the 1980s, then won again in 2008 and placed first or second in regular season team points the following three years; we placed second again in 2013 and 2014 and third in 2015.  We accomplished this through dedicated participation by racers having a wide range of racing ability and because every racer’s results count within their “flight” (see below for more).  You can race, too!  It’s fun, it’s a challenge, it’s a great way to improve your skiing and you’ll enjoy competing with racers matched to your skill level.  The racing season extends from December through March.  You can join the Team at any time.


The W-SSOC Racing Team is open to members of all ages and every ability level. As a practical matter, racing experience shows age 4 to be the minimum.  Beginners may join the team and take as long as necessary to get qualified (see below).  We welcome snowboarders, too!  You will race on the same course as everyone else and your Crescent racing handicap will be determined just like everyone else’s: it’s how fast you get to the finish line.


In order to race in the regular races, and for your points to count toward Individual and Team results, new racers must first establish a qualifying Crescent handicap.  Handicaps are based solely on a racer’s performance on the racecourse, without regard to age or gender or mode of travel (e.g., skis, snowboard, telemark, sitzski).  Once the qualifying threshold is met, the qualifying handicap is used to place the racer in a Division/Flight (see below) of the next regular race. The four main ways to establish a Crescent handicap are:

1)     NASTAR race at the annual (December) Crescent Steamboat Race & Instruction Camp;

2)     NASTAR race at any other participating ski resort;

3)     Crescent Qualification and Training Event (December 2, 2018 – see sidebar for application); or

4)     Flight 21 or Flight 22 of a regular Crescent race. If the Team Race Director and Crescent officials deem pre-estimates of a racer’s ability to be appropriate, the Crescent Registrar will place the racer in Flight 21 of Division 1; otherwise (and is the case for most racers), the racer races in Flight 22 of Division 2.

Most new racers become qualified by means of 4) or 3).  Racers who do not attain the threshold-qualifying handicap (most racers above beginner level can beat the threshold) may continue to try as long as it takes by racing in the qualifying Flight 22 of each regular race.

Once the racer attains a handicap in a regular race, the qualifying handicap is discarded.  Subsequent handicaps are recalculated using only results from regular races.  Depending on how you do, you might move up or down in the flights in subsequent races.


The Crescent Registrar arranges the field of pre-registered racers for each race into a list ordered numerically by racer handicap, and then divides the field into two groups.  The group with the lowest handicaps (generally, the fastest racers) is placed in Division 1. Racers with higher handicaps are placed in Division 2.  Each Division is then subdivided into handicap-ordered groups of, typically, 8 to 10 racers, called Flights.  Flights in Division 1 are typically numbered 1 to 8, 9 or 10, depending on the number of pre-registered racers.  Flights in Division 2 are typically numbered 11 to 18, 19 or 20.  Once racers are assigned to Flights, the Registrar jumbles the list of Flights and then assigns bib numbers to the racers.  The first run of the race then proceeds in numerical (bib) order.  The second run of the race is in reverse order.

Competition among individuals is within Flights.  Team competition counts the results of all regular racers, regardless of Division or Flight.  While Division/Flight assignments do not change during a particular racing weekend, racers’ handicaps are recalculated after each run of a regular race.  The Crescent Registrar, when making Division/Flight assignments for the next race, uses the prior weekending handicaps.


At some resorts, Division 1 and Division 2 race simultaneously on separate racecourses.  The Division I course is usually more difficult on the slalom day (Saturday) and is usually longer, and sometimes steeper, on giant slalom day (Sunday). When Division 1 and Division 2 must race on the same slope, Division 2 races first on Saturday; Division 1 races first on Sunday.  The course is re-set between the Divisions.


That’s right!  Everyone helps the team.  Each flight scores its own points, 10 for first place, through 1 for 10th place and all points are added to determine the team total.  There are a few technicalities, but generally a point scored is a point counted.  Everyone gets two runs with the maximum combined potential individual score of 20 points. At every race in the regular season, prizes are awarded for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in each flight.  Trophies are awarded for the regular season and Crescent Cup.  All participants in a particular race, including those in the qualifying Flight 22, are eligible for valuable door prizes. Individual points count toward the season Points Championship.  The Male and Female Season Points Champs each win a trip to Steamboat, CO.


See Ken Lumsden or Kyle Carroll at any W-SSOC club meeting, call or email (see link below) Ken or Kyle, or come to the Racing Team Meeting.   Cost for the first new team member is a household is $45.00 per person, payable to W-SSOC Racing.  Returning racers, and each additional new racer in a household, pay $35.00 per person.  W-SSOC pays $35.00 per racer annual racing fee to the Crescent Ski Council for each qualified racer who races in at least one regular race.


You don’t have to be a tri-athlete to race, but the better shape you’re in, the better you will do. Jogging, jumping rope, bicycling and roller blading are all excellent ways to improve your aerobic fitness. Roller blading is particularly useful because the skating motion translates directly to useful skills on the racecourse.  Strength training will help, too.  Machine-based workouts, free weights and body-weight exercises are excellent choices.


After you join the Team, the only commitment is to show up and race when you say you will race.  You only need to decide by the Monday night before the following weekend’s races whether you will race. You may register to race in Saturday’s race, Sunday’s race, or both days of the weekend.  We welcome all, whether you can participate in one or two races, or every race.


Contact Ken or Kyle for details and see the 2018-2019 Race Schedule under the Racing tab.

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