Sunlight racers charge hard at JOs |

Sunlight racers charge hard at JOs

Special to the Post IndependentWhitney Setterberg

A pair of Sunlight Ski Team racers saved some of their best racing for the season finale.

Whitney Setterberg tallied a pair of top-10 finishes and Dru Avery captured the Hard-Charger Award at the J-4 Junior Olympics held last week at Steamboat Springs.

Setterberg placed fifth in Saturday morning’s giant slalom and was 10th in the afternoon run to cap the three-day event.

On Thursday’s opening day, Setterberg got off to a solid start with 12th-place finish on an icy super-G course.

She didn’t suffer when the demands switched from speed to quickness. Setterberg remained in the top 15 in both slalom runs Friday, placing 14th and 15th.

With solid runs in all three disciplines, Setterberg was named to the top-10 team for cumulative standings at the event, which featured 67 female racers from the Rocky Mountain and Central divisions.

Avery was saddled with a high start number, but he didn’t let it slow him down much in the giant slalom. Avery, who started in the 69th slot, posted finishes of 25th and 27th to earn the Hard-Charger honor given to the racer achieving the most improvement from starting place to final standings. Avery finished ahead of more than 40 higher-ranked skiers who entered the event with earlier starting slots.

The Junior Olympics didn’t start out as well as it ended for Avery. He didn’t finish the super-G or the first slalom run. In the afternoon slalom race , though, he stayed on course and got in the groove with a finish of 45th in the field of 93 racers.

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