It was an energetic and thrilling first race of the season.
Sporting masks and social distancing, we were all ecstatic to be racing again. Faced with the mystery of a broad scale new team, having had limited dry-land and gate training practices, racing on an unfamiliar race trail, and kicking off the season with slalom instead of giant slalom, the Sparta Alpine Racing Ski Teams met the challenge with great success
Everyone was feeling butterflies and excitement as they waited for the starter to say “Racer Ready?” And when it was time to take their second run their nerves had subsided and they were enthusiastic to shred the course again. When the results had finally been posted, both teams achieved podium third.
The Sparta Varsity Boys Ski Team placed third overall with a team time of 4:41.30. Vernon won first place with a team time of 3:42.12 and Pingry placed second with a team time of 4:21.62. Second-year racer Kanna Pasunuri had an impressive night and finished 5th place overall. He led the Sparta Boys Varsity Ski Team to podium placement, along with three new freshman racers Drew Young (16th overall), Jake Koerner (18th overall), and Sam Scalera (21st overall).
The Sparta Girl’s Varsity Ski Team raced aggressively and determinedly. Led by team captain Claudia Calafati the girl’s alpine racing ski team captured podium third place with a team time of 4:28.70. Shy of 1st place by just 9.5 seconds. Winning first place was Tenafly 4:19.24 and taking 2nd place was Vernon 4:23.96. Our four veteran racers delivered the podium placement with the following times: Finishing first for our team and in the top ten overall was Claudia Calafati (8th overall), followed by Cora Moriarty (11th overall), then Rylee Selsor (14th overall), and team captain Rachel Young (16th overall).
Year after year, the Sparta Ski Team continues to demonstrate exceptional sportsmanship. Friday night was no different, the Sparta Ski team was the last team off the mountain, cheering on all the other high school racers until the last racer was gone; this has become their respected trademark.