Skiing Success at the British Schoolgirls’ Races
The Downe House Ski Team returned triumphant with medals and trophies from the British Schoolgirls’ Races in Flaine, France.
A huge well done to Katy, Clemmie, Tate, Emily, Tilly and Sasha for representing Downe House so successfully, culminating in 1st places for U14 Slalom, Giant Slalom and in U14 unregistered Combined as well as U16 unregistered Giant Slalom. The team also earned 2nd places for U18 Giant Slalom and Slalom as well as a 3rd place for unregistered U16. Our B team also finished 3rd place in unregistered team for Giant Slalom.
Upper Fifth student Sasha reports on the Races,
“We had two days of training followed by two race days on 28 and 29 January. For the whole of the trip we had a brilliant instructor, Myrtille, who helped us to fine-tune our techniques on the training days and supported and motivated us on the race days.
We trained for Giant Slalom on the first day, and Slalom on the next. The training really enabled us to get used to being back in skis as well as improving our speed by practising in harder conditions than in the race itself. We stopped for a well-needed lunch before heading straight back out to the slopes. We finished day one with some amazing views from the top of the Grand Massif, Tete des Lindars, before having a fun ski down through some off piste. We spent all of day two training, which was very beneficial as we found Slalom to be the harder of the two disciplines. It snowed all day and into the evening, when we had a meeting with the race managers and watched some videos of the sponsors and of last year’s races which really got us in the mood for the race day.
Race day started early and, having beaten most of Flaine to the slopes, we started our course inspection. Myrtille was very helpful in guiding us through the course and pointing out tactics to us. Due to the heavy snowfall, we ended up slipping the course many times, trying to get rid of the loose snow for our team mates. Katy started our team off, racing fourth, followed by Clemmie, Tate, Emily, Tilly, and I. Whist waiting to race we did several free runs - some on the practice course as a warm up. For the second race the thirty-five skiers were switched so everyone could have a fair run on a less rutted course. The whole team performed well in both Giant Slalom and Slalom with only a couple of crashes; in one of these Emily got straight back up and finished the run, very impressively.
The trip ended on Tuesday night with a big prize-giving involving masses of medals and trophies. Our team won many prizes, the highlights included Katy coming 2nd in the U18 Giant Slalom and Slalom, Clemmie coming 3rd in the unregistered U16 and Tate coming 1st in the U14 Slalom, U14 Giant Slalom and U14 Combined! Our B team also came 3rd in the unregistered team Giant Slalom. It was so satisfying for both our teams to do so well and for our training to have been worthwhile. Both teams did amazingly, but it couldn't have been achieved without the two brilliant teachers who came and supported us throughout the trip, Miss Bott and Mrs Henson. They were so great all weekend, from waking us up in the morning to supporting us throughout both race days and cheering for us. We finished our trip with a celebratory supper at one of the local restaurants before waking up early the following morning to head back to School and catch up on some work!”