The Golden Peak expansion was busy Tuesday through Friday as U16 athletes gathered in Vail for the SYNC U16 Rocky/Central Qualifiers. Over the four days of alpine racing, Ski & Snowboard Club Vail (SSCV) athletes battled their way to victory and notched 12 podiums and 47 top 10s. Coming out of this series, SSCV has 12 women and 15 men qualified for the Rocky/Central U16 Junior Championships – accounting for more than half the places for boys and girls – more than any other program.
The SYNC U16 Rocky/Central Qualifiers race included two days of giant slalom racing and two days of slalom racing. Skiers who perform particularly well in the SYNC qualifying events throughout the season can qualify for the Rocky/Central U16 Junior Championships in Steamboat Springs. From there, athletes can qualify for the U16 Nationals in Sugarloaf, Maine. Those who do not qualify for the Steamboat Springs competition attend the Rocky Mountain Division U16 Championships at Crested Butte.
In Tuesday’s women’s slalom race, SSCV showed she meant business on her home mountain, sweeping the podium and topping the top 10. In the first slalom, Viktoria Zaytseva took first, Addison Dulaney took the lead. second and Nicole Begue completed the podium. in third place. Isabella Gonzalez was fifth, Sage Sappenfield sixth, Madison Milligan eighth and Samara Hitt ninth. In slalom two, Zaytseva again took first place, with Dulaney taking fifth, Gonzalez sixth, Maizy Douglas seventh and Sappenfield tenth.
The SSCV boys also kicked off their competition with confidence, taking half of the top 10 spots in Wednesday’s giant slalom. Stewie Bruce grabbed first and Tyler Hopkins took third as two-thirds of the podium belonged to SSCV. Henry Andrie finished fourth, Miko Lewis landed seventh, Oliver Helland finished ninth and Nicolas Quintero rounded out the top 10.
Wednesday’s giant slalom also belonged to the SSCV girls. Josephine Trueblood won, Zaytseva took fourth place, Dulaney took seventh place, Anika Jobson took eighth place, Begue came ninth, and Douglas finished tenth.
Thursday’s giant slalom race further cemented SSCV’s impressive presence on the mountain as the U16 boys once again grabbed more than half of the top 10 on their second day of giant slalom. Bruce led the way in second, Andrie was fourth, Hopkins fifth, Lewis sixth, Alex Krupka moved up to eighth and Helland took ninth. As for the girls, Zaytseva took her third victory, Douglas took fifth, Dulaney took sixth, Gonzalez took ninth, and Crowley landed in tenth.
The last day of competition ended with an impressive performance for SSCV in the boys’ slalom. In the first slalom, Bruce grabbed another podium spot, securing second place, with Krupka taking third. Lewis took fourth and Hopkins placed fifth, Erik Strickler took seventh and Andrie placed eighth. In slalom two, Bruce held on to second place. Lewis held on to fourth, Hopkins took sixth, Quintero skied to seventh, Calvin Schaffler moved up to eighth and Helland clinched ninth.
“It was great to see our U16 women put in such great runs during the competition this week,” said Adam Chadborne, SSCV Alpine Girls U16 Head Coach and Alpine U16 Women Performance Coach.
“Golden Peak was in exceptional condition for these kids to compete, which would not have been possible without the help of Vail Mountain, the race team, our volunteers and our coaches.”
“This group (the SSCV boys) have worked really hard over the best half of the year. They have improved so much,” said SSCV Alpine Men U16 Head Coach Ian Dunlop.
“Last week was really a great reflection of their efforts. I’m very proud of the way everyone on the team skied; I think everyone showed their best skiing, that’s all we can really ask for at this stage of their development.
“They have some great opportunities ahead of them, whether it’s Steamboat or Crested Butte, and we can’t wait to see what lies ahead,” Dunlop concluded.
For a full list of results, visit vola.UssaLiveTiming.com.