Sunlight festival shines
The Sunlight Winter Sports Club was busy this past weekend representing Sunlight Mountain Resort and Glenwood Springs. The under-14 skiers traveled to Breckenridge for their first Super G of the season while the U10s and U12s stayed home to host close to 300 racers at the annual U12/U10 Skills Quest Race Festival.
The local racers shined with several top-10 finishes in the slalom race, including a third- and fourth-place finish from Cate Simpson and a pair of sixth-place finishes by Kailey Murphy and Tucker Sheldrake. Emily de Moraes, Emma Barsness, Aiden Partch, Orion Adelman, and Garrett Voller all performed well in their first events of the season in their new age classes. A few Buddy Werner racers who opted to race, Katherine Strickland and Amy Triebel, were also able to participate.
While this was happening, the U14 Ski Team members traveled to Breckenridge — battling high winds and an icy course — to tackle their first Super G race of the season. It was also the first-ever Super G for most racers. With almost 200 racers in all between boys and girls, the first-year U14s of the SWSC team posted some very respectable finishes against other clubs who have many racers competing in their third year in this event.
Hailey Hoffman posted the club’s best finish with a 20th-place finish and a 55th-place finish amongst the girls. Ethan de Moraes was just behind in the boys class with a 28th-place finish and a spectacular crash that earned him a DNF in the second race. Skylar Adelman posted a 36th, 50th, and 55th; Michal Hale a 61st, 69th, 84th, and Jonathan (JP) Simpson a 42nd and 49th.
Blue skies and warm weather made the weekend enjoyable for all of the racers at Sunlight. There were more than 70 local volunteers who helped during the weekend.
The Sunlight ski teams will no prepare for their upcoming slalom races both this weekend and next in Aspen.
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The Glenwood Springs-Rifle sports rivalry goes way back for GSHS baseball coach and former Demons multi-sport student-athlete Eric Nieslanik.