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Nastar and Alpine board gate-bashing Racing


LeeW
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Could anyone tell me about racing on those kind of gates instead of triangular gates ? As well as the systematic of racing ont he course? I know you do nastar, patmoore (saw you over there at their forum). Its kinda like going back in time for racing like old days, but I admit that Im spending quite a lot of money on the equipment, and ill have to make-do with nastar for this coming winter to maintain my training. I want to be able to do well and use that to apply to USASA racing. I just simply cannot afford Team Summit or Ski Club Vail training program as of right now. Next year for sure or two years.

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You just have to turn a little wider. I got careless once last year and took a gate in the chest but I've had more than my share of black and blue marks from hitting them while on skis too. I did USASA racing two seasons ago and hope to get back to it this year.

Speaking of pain - I just had two pins inserted in my right hand. I executed a UPD (unplanned dismount) from my unicycle Monday nlight and fractured the right (dominant) hand. Typing is only marginally easier than writing with a cast.

The child bride and I are heading for Hawaii on Sunday for two weeks.

Ciao!

P

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Guest Randy S.

I race in a league that has us run GS on a skier course. We used to do slalom on one also, but now they give us boarder gates. First of all, armor up. I wear: shin guards, knee protection, padded shorts (look like padded bike shorts) and a Dainese slalom top. The top is critical since you want to hit the gates with your forearm to move them aside. Hips are also critical b/c you'll hit with your hips often times.

Carve a high line. You want to have finished all your turning by the time you get to the gate. You can take a line pretty close to the gate, but you need to hit it with either your forearm or hip before your boot/shin. If your boot hits first, you'll be thrown off your edge and most likely crash, or at least be very late for the next gate. If you aren't comfortable with hitting the gates, start wide and work your way in. You may want a full-face helmet in case you miss the gate with your forearm. I've done that a few times, especially in slalom where I hit them really hard. When you miss and they hit you in the head, at least with the full-face it is just loud, not painful. Keep your hands out in front of you. If you let your hand lag inside on a turn and it hooks on a gate, you are going to get spun around.

As mentioned above, the start is critical. Hopefully they'll have 4x4s for you to pull off of. If not, either get a couple of skiers to pull you out, or at worst, borrow the starter's ski poles and just drop them after starting.

Do us proud. Hit the gates hard and leave the skiers going "wow, look at that snowboarder attack the course - he looks like a skier." I love when they say that. I also love beating their lame-ass times.

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Our league is run with ski gates as well since it is still dominated by skier teams. As most people above said the start is very critical. You need to be setting up high for all the turns as compared to the line that skiers take and it all starts at that first gate. Riding an edge, even if it is only a little bit and not a full on carve is very important for speed, and for getting your body in the right position for the rest of the course. I find I can take them pretty close as long as I keep my hands in front of me and can always use the arm brush to knock them out of the way if I get too far over them; however, if its not a planned move it can really throw off your rhythm. I have taken them too close and broke goggles by taking a pole to the face, and once even knocked mysely silly because I ran my boot over the pole like you can do with stubbies, but the ski gates don't give so well. One other thing, you can take a gate much closer on a heelside because you can take it out with your shoulder/ass and not have it knock you over, while on toeside you tend to take it across the chest which can really knock you around. Keep in mind that these are only my experiences, but i hope it helps.

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I hope to get back to doing a few USASA races in the Southern VT series this year. The child bride thinks I should give up the halfpipe. I point out that there's not a lot of competition at my age.

At the NASTAR Nationals in Park City we had to push off 2x4s that extended no more than 12 inches out of the snow. Since we weren't competing against the skiers it wasn't a problem but it sure made for some slow starts.

Of the 1139 racers, I was the only one with two bibs (boarder and skier). It made for some logistical challenges changing gear.

PSA - unplanned dismounts from unicycles can cause pain and really annoy spouses..... "We're going to Hawaii for two weeks and you can't get your arm wet???"

brokenhand.jpg

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Nice injury. I used to race motorcycles, and broke my wrist a few times (never could remember not to put it out to stop me!), then about 5-6 years ago I was out jumping waves in a zodiac, and I landed on my right wrist (holding the throttle grip). Great pain, which got steadily worse.

The end result was that the three little bones of the wrist (scaphoid, trapezium, and trapezoid (or something else - my apologies to anyone who knows the real names.. STT) had all been driven together, and the surgeon fianlly pinned the three to fuse them together to give me a wrist that "sort of" functions. But I have no more pain, and can actually hold a glass or shake a hand!

They said I would have 80% mobility when it all healed, and they were right. The catch is on average, not everywhere, so it bends some directions much more than others!

Moral: take really good care of that injury and let it heal properly!

John

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