New to Racing

Correct way round poles

Guide/New to Racing – How to get started

This can seem quite a daunting task. You have seen the skiers and boarders on TV or at a resort while on holiday and wonder how on earth do I get to do that too?  Well hopefully after reading through here you will have gained some insight on where to go and how to go about it.  This is by no means an all inclusive, but aims to give a signpost of where to go to get the experience to get you to the next level.
There are two initial paths to racing:
  1. through your local Snowsports club or,
  2. through your school if it is a member of the English Schools Ski Association (ESSKIA)
There are currently 7 ski clubs in the ERSA region:
The initial step will be to become a member of your nearest ski club and you will be assessed before being invited to join the race team. The basic requirement means being able to make linked snowplough turns and to be able to get on a lift unaided.  Talk to the Coaches or Race managers and other parents, all will be useful sources of information.
You will be required to attend regular training sessions at the club and can then participate in the ERSA Summer League  races all held in the above ski centres. The Summer League races usually run between April/May to October and are usually held on Sundays.  Prizes are awarded to the different age categories at each race and overall winners and clubs at the end of the season.  The season culminates in the ERSA Championships at the end of the summer where further prizes are awarded to racers and clubs. Some clubs also run their own Championships open to members.
More information on the Summer League can be found here Guide to Summer League Racing.
This is the starting point, the grass roots of all ski racing.  As your skiing skills develop there are further pathways to racing ie the National and Grand Prix Series, International Races (FIS), National Teams (England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland) and even the GB Squad and the ultimate, the GB Olympic team!!!
Other useful information can be found looking at the pages under the tab “Artificial Racing”.

A GUIDE TO RACING

Below you will find a guide to the races available to skiers in the UK. As a club we are heavily involved with the ERSA Summer league races, these races are entry level upwards and suitable for first time racers upwards.

We expect all Hemel members to make the best efforts to race in at least one of these ERSA Summer League races.

ERSA SUMMER LEAGUE RACES

These races take place on both dry slope and indoor snow, the race day roughly runs as follows, l have included brief explanations for each stage.

Bunny Run. If it is your first race you can take a bunny run, a ski through the course at race pace to practice. This does not count as a timed run’ You will do your bunny run then return to the top straight away for your timed run.

Which Runs Count:

U12 and below: FASTEST 2 TIMES FROM YOUR 3 RUNS TO COUNT.

U14 and above: FASTEST TIME OF FIRST 2 TO COUNT PLUS YOUR 3RD TIME.

 

Race Day

 

0800                                      Bib Collection. Collect your bib from the Hemel Race Manager (Sarah Warne or Matt Howeson). Bibs must be worn for open practice. When you collect your bib please let the Race Manager know if you want to partake in the team events in the afternoon.

0815 Open Practice         A chance to warm up your legs and get a feel for the slope.

0900 Course set:              A designated coach will set the course using large poles for U14 and above, small stubbies for U12 and below. Usually same course

0915 Course inspect       A chance to slip down the side of the course and get a feel for the gates and                                                    combinations. You cannot ski the course and must stop at least every 2 gates.

0945                                       First run, usually the U14 and above go first and do 1 run, then course changed to stubbies and the U12 and below do 2 runs, course changed back to big poles and the U14 do 2 runs. Females first then Males and then back to females etc. finish with a change back to stubbie course for 3rd U12 and below run

 

1230/100 DUAL SLALOM TEAM EVENTS

Please come see your race manager to get your sticker for Heroes of to find out which team you are on. Stickers and teams will be issued at the end of run 3.

CHILDRENS TEAMS (CHOSEN BY RACE MANAGER ON DAY, USUALLY DONE USING FIRST RUN TIME)

Children’s team consist of 5 members must have 1 female or male, all racers U16 or below. Relay style

OPEN TEAM (Chosen by race manager on day, usually using first run time)

Any age, 5 team members, must have at least 1 female or male, relay style

HEROES

Total mix of gender, club and ability. Though every effort is made to match up speeds roughly to make a fun competition.

These are fun events and can include all skiers, a great way of getting used to dual events as well as meeting other skiers from the region.

HOW TO ENTER; www.ersa.co.uk create an account then click on enter race etc. Can book several at one time and pay nearer the time. PayPal.

 

SCHOOLS RACES

These are another good chance for grass root competition, we have a few that run locally.

ERSA schools race at the end of April, entry details found on ERSA website.

London Schools Ski Race, held at WELWYN usually mid June. Entry details dominic.mcgonigal@c8associates.com

Biss schools races; indoor slope races details can be found by emailing office@bissracing.co.uk

All school races are team events with ideally four on a team but can be three. You can enter the ERSA and the BISS races as an individual if your school is unable to get a team together. Teams can be mixed but ideally same sex, the team competes in the age category of the oldest skier. The best three times from the first run count and these are added to the best three times from the second run. The total is your team time. You must have three times to count from both the first and second run.

 

CLUB NATIONALS

Slightly higher level than the summer league, no team events. A little stricter on the rules.

HOW TO ENTER; Some will be via the ERSA website, some will be via Snow Sport England competition entry, www.entries.snowsportengland.org.uk

GBR SERIES INSIDE / OUT

Slightly higher level, two runs and must complete first run to qualify for the second run, a chance to gain seed points for the BARTS system. Top 5 in age group get medals and some snow but not all snow events offer a pro slalom race as well. No medals for the pro sl just bragging rights.

 

HOW TO ENTER; www.entries.snowsportengland.org.uk

Landgraaf BASS (race end of May)

The club organises this trip which comprises of a couple of days coaching at the longer Landgraaf slope in Holland followed by two days of racing in the BASS Championships. A great fun long weekend always over the May bank holiday. Look for information via email from the club. We usually have at least 30 skiers going out to this race. The club organises coach travel and accommodation or you can arrange your own transport. For further information please contact Hemel Race Secretary. A good way to start earning BASS points. This race counts towards the Alpine points system not the artificial.

HOW TO ENTER; www.entries.snowsportengland.org.uk

 

ALPINE RACES

Here are a few but please take a look at gbski.com for the full calendar. Alpine races will offer the chance to gain BASS seed points.

Bormio ; English Alpine Champs

British inter schools Pila Italy

Welsh Alpine Champs Pila Italy

Delancey British Champs Tignes

Schools races are run by companies such as BSA or impulse, other races can be entered via the Snowsport England entry site as above.

We do hope this helps, please do not hesitate to ask any of the committee members if you have questions. If we do not know, we will know how to find out.

 

 

HSRC


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