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Hi folks,

Normally I help out with junior racer training at the Middlebury Snow
Bowl during the week between Christmas and New Year's, and this year
was no exception. (For the record, no, I don't coach, thankfully. I'm
just a kid corraller/gopher/beast of burden.) Most years I get to come
home from sliding around icy race courses to read about everyone
else's powder days. This year, well, reading all of your reports
hasn't left me feeling quite so bad.

The silver lining? We've had some great race training this past
week. Saturday's niar set up yesterday's "snow" to be incredibly fast,
and the coaches set up a GS training course on Kelton, under the
Sheehan lift. The first three gates were on a very steep headwall that
was throughly scraped down to boilerplate, so the kids had to launch
themselves over the lip and *carve* *ice* *now*. It was a great lesson
in the power of getting forward and taking a high line. It was a treat
to see some of the kids really get it, and to see great improvement in
even the ones who didn't quite get it. I'm pretty sure that very few
of the Midd kids are going to freak at steep icy pitches this year.

First race is this Sunday. The first powder day? Who knows? Maybe this
year it won't be so bad hanging around the race courses.

Dave G.

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