SMS Nordic skiers find winning ways
Apr 07, 2014 | 1653 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
MIDDLEBURY- The Stratton Mountain School Nordic team younger group has been working hard this season, taking top honors at local and regional races. On March 15 and 16, the team traveled to the Rikert Nordic Center for the Youth Grand Prix, the North American championships for 10-13-year-old cross-country racers in the US and Canada, and took home three of the top eight awards. These awards were given for the combined results from the Grand Prix and the Champion at Jeunesse in Quebec earlier in March. Five of the top eight awards were given to Americans, and SMS racers won three of those five.

Seventh-grader Anna Lehmann, of Windham; eighth-grader Adam Witkowski, of Peru; and eighth-grader Mae Chalmers, of Landgrove, all brought home the “maple leaf” award for being the top finishers in their age group.

At the Grand Prix races, SMS racers scored top overall results with Witkowski in first; eighth-grader Ben Ogden, of Landgrove, in third; and eighth-grader Eli Eppolito, of Londonderry, in sixth. For the girls, Lehmann was second, and eighth-grader Mehana Koch, of Peru, was sixth overall.

On March 15, the boys competed in a 3K skate, and Witkowski was first for 13-year-old boys, Ogden was fourth, and Eppolito was sixth. The girls competed in a 3K skate as well, and Lehmann was fifth for 12-year-old girls, while Chalmers finished first for 13-year-old girls.

On March 16, the girls competed in a classic pursuit, and Lehmann stepped up on the podium, finishing second. Chalmers was second and Koch was eighth in their age group. The boys also raced a classic pursuit, with Witkowski finishing first, and Ogden placing third.

The SMS Nordic racers also skied in the Bill Koch Ski Festival in Waterville, ME, on February 22 and 23. Racers skied a 2x2K classic relay. Ogden and Witkowski were the first-place team, while Eppolito finished third, after winning a sprint to the finish line. For the girls, Chalmers was on the second-place team, and Lehmann and Koch finished fifth.

On Sunday, February 23, the skiers raced a 4K individual freestyle. Witkowski came out on top for the boys, and Ogden was second. For the girls, Chalmers was the top finisher in second, Lehmann was ninth, and Koch was 18th.

On March 1 and 2, the Nordic Team traveled to Quebec for the Championnat Jeunesse. On March 1, racers competed in a 4K skate, and for the boys, Witkowski was first, Ogden was second, and Eppolito was eighth. For the girls, Chalmers was first, and Koch was 14th for 13-year-old girls, and Lehmann was second for 12-year-old girls.

On Sunday, the team raced in a 6K classic. Witkowski was again in first for the boys, Ogden was third, and Eppolito was sixth. For the 13-year-old girls, Chalmers was fourth, and for the 12-year-old girls, Lehmann was fourth.
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