Tri-State Info

This all-day program allows our more experienced racers an opportunity to compete at the highest levels. The focus is on continued skill development, with additional emphasis on more advanced skills and race tactics. Note that for this season, racers born after 2007 are not permitted in this program. The Tri-State program is smaller than Interclub and is divided into two general groups. The younger athletes are referred to as U12 & U14 racers and the older groups are called the U16 & U19. For the 2017-2018 season, the age groups are as follows, based on year of birth:

U12 2006 & 2007
U14 2004 & 2005
U16 2002 & 2003
U19 1999, 2000, & 2001
U21 1997 & 1998

 

U12 & U14

For the U12 & U14 racers there are 4 races throughout the regular season, two slalom & two giant slalom.

All U12 racers qualify for the U12 Tri-State Championships to be held on February 24 at Ski Sundown (GS) and February 25 at Mt Southington (SL).

Upon completion of the regular season races, the U14 athletes are ranked based on their finishes in each run of the races and can qualify for the U14 Tri-State Championships to be held on March 3 & 4 at Berkshire East. The U14 Championship event comprises a race weekend with an awards banquet on Saturday night.

At the U12 & U14 championship events, our racers compete with the best racers from across southern New England. Connecticut (including Thunder Ridge in NY) and Eastern Massachusetts (including Rhode Island) are represented at these events.

In addition, success at the regular season races may qualify someone for the Piche Qualifier, which is being held the weekend of Feb 10/11 at a site that is TBD (as of early January 2018). The Piche Qualifier will have racers from both the East and West divisions of Massachusetts to determine the team to represent Massachusetts at the Francis Piche Invitational Race. The Piche race is held at Gunstock in March and brings together the best racers from all of the Eastern Region states.

U16

There are 5 regular season races plus 2 races at the U16 Tri-State Championships weekend. All U16 racers qualify for the championship weekend and their post season opportunities are determined by their season long results, not just specific results at championships. Seeding will be based upon current USSA points by discipline. This is the first age group that begins the process of racing in “scored events” which will result in determining a racer’s points. The method of determining a racer’s points is explained in the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Competition Guide beginning on page 22. Athletes begin their careers at 999 points in each discipline and work to lower them through good results against good competitor fields. The best person in the world in a given discipline starts the season with 0 points. The U16 races have a random seed draw for the 15 athletes with the lowest points and then athletes are started in ascending order of points. 999s will be randomly seeded after racers with points. Second run start order will be flip 30 format based upon first run finish time. DSQ/DNF will be random draw after seeded racers. Full Tri-State U16 Rules can be found here.

U19 & U21

The U19 & U21 racers also compete in “scored events” which result in determining a racer’s points. Refer to the Competition Guide on page 22 for a complete description. At these races, an athlete receives a numerical score based on their relative performance (similar to a golf handicap). Over time, an athlete can work to lower their “points” within a given discipline (SL, GS, SG & DH). Not only do lower “points” provide an athlete with a better starting bib number, they are the pathway to higher level races such as FIS Development and Eastern Cup races. Success can also open the door to a variety of post season events as well. Within the Tri-State domain, there are 7 races for this age group, with the last race scheduled for February 11. In order to experience racing at different levels & venues, you should check out races in nearby regions such as New Hampshire (nhara.org) and Vermont (vara.org). Most of these races are open to anyone who chooses to enter. Speak with your child’s coach about opportunities for extending the race season in this fashion.

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In all of these racing programs it is important to remain grounded in your realistic chances for success at a higher level. Ski racing is represented by a very steep pyramid with very few racers at the top. It is important to develop your own appreciation for success, and to feel happy when you know you skied well. Ski racing is a unique sport that you can participate in for your entire life. The skills you develop in these junior race programs are the foundation for that endless enjoyment.