Younger, older AVSC skiers snag golds
Aspen Valley Ski & Snowboard Club alpine athletes dominated at home and on the road in a weekend that included 13 gold-medal performances.
The club’s younger racers went to Winter Park. There, Devon McSwain of Glenwood Springs won all four under-14 girls races at the Jan. 4-5 Bolle Age Class Series event. McSwain’s sister, Summer, along with teammate Allyson Cornelius, swapped wins — each taking two of the races — in the giant slaloms at Winter Park.
Local U12 racer Tyler Thomas was also on the podium for two of the Winter Park races, and Garrett Dollahan earned a bronze medal in Sunday’s race.
In her first series as a U14 competitor, Levyn Thomas finished twice in the Top 10.
That same weekend, AVSC and Aspen Highlands hosted four of their own races as part of the Surefoot Ski Cup. The series was open to FIS-level skiers.
AVSC’s stepped-up, year-round conditioning program could be, in part, credited for the strong early-season performances.
“I think commitment to the conditioning program is taking hold,” AVSC Alpine Director Greg Needell said.
He used AVSC U21 athlete Devon Cardamone as just one example. Cardamone won three races during the weekend — both Super-G’s and one of the giant slaloms — at Aspen Highlands. His margin of victory over Nick Mitchell of Basalt was just 1/100th of a second in one super-G.
“Cardamone is making a move up the rankings,” Needell said. “Honestly, last year Devon would not have been able to handle the forces he is creating this season. His new strength allows this to happen.”
Among the U18-division skiers was Glenwood Springs High School senior Travis Lundin, who finished seventh in Friday’s giant slalom and seventh in both super-Gs at Highlands. Lundin just finished his final season of playing football at GSHS, where he played quarterback for three years.
The same Aspen Highlands course will see plenty of action on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, as the region’s top U16 skiers compete in the annual Wilder Dwight Memorial Race.
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