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Having been at Mount Hood at some point in five of the last seven summers, I
can report that at least _some_ of the newer speed event skis made for world
class racers are from the kind of design you see in "production" models.
How many of those skis survive beyond testing, and actually make it to the
World Cup scene, one can only guess.

Incidentally, as a junior racer, I was fortunate enough to have K2 as one of
my sponsors.  Those skis were differentiated from consumer skis in that they
looked much beefier, had a little sticker that showed flexes and camber and
such and had a special serial number.  In fact, it used to just begin with
the letter "R."  I once received a pair of GS skis that had a number "R
0000008."   I was told this meant that in that length (207cm's) there were
only eight pairs (all handmade) produced before mine, for racers, in that
particular production season.  Almost all companies, at least then, had
slightly different graphics or sidewall colors for their race stock skis.
Lots of times, the skis had an experimental "look," ie., sometimes with the
next season's consumer model graphics, or even a combination of old and new.

Talk about sidecuts and design for speed events skis also reminds me that it
was widely rumored in racing circles in 1992 that Patrick Ortlieb won gold
in the Olympic DH (Face de Bellevarde course (sp?)) on a pair of 213 Head
skis.  What was also unusual (that's very short in length) was that they had
a SL, or nearly so, sidecut.  This course was particularly tricky in one
section with a tight turn near a newly blasted out rock wall.  The racers
slowed to 37 mph, an unheard of slow speed for that kind of event.
Nonetheless, it was exciting to watch and, of course, to hear the best
skiers in the world whining about having to go slow and turn a bit.

----- Original Message -----
From: Dana Dorsett <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Sunday, August 29, 1999 2:02 PM
Subject: Re: [SKIVT-L] Race Stock etc.


> Jeff Compo <[log in to unmask]> writes:
>
> >I was specifically speaking of race-stock super g and dh skis, which
still
> >utilize traditional sandwich construction.  With all the marketing hype
of
> >pro's skiing on "the same skis for sale in the shop", which can be true
in
> >slalom and gs, it is quite amusing to see atomic betarace dh skis, made
of
> >traditional construction (without the Beta topsheet construction which is
> >their main marketing point.)
>
> Just a guess, but I'd think that on speed event skis being too edgy could
> be a liability pounding though ruts at 50mph+, and that shock-absorption
> & glide efficiency is where its at.  In my (very limited) experience with
> DH skis they seemed like noodles- very flexy but with tiny sidecut, but
> overall long on "forgiveness" factor. (Skiing moguls on floppy 223s sure
> turns heads! :-)
>
> >Now if you want to talk about edge hold on ice, try a Goode gs ski, made
> >with 100% carbon fiber torsion box construction.  They're about 200% more
> >torsionally stiff than the average gs race ski, which helps immensly on
> >ice.
>
> Could be too much of a good(e) thing, but it'd be fun to demo.  I found
> the K2 GS RACE 10.0 a bit too edgy (and stiff) to be fun as an all
mountain
> ski, but they sure cut a clean line at speed on any smooth surface. If
> they were softer (as in the GOODE GS) they would have been a lot more fun.
>
> >Because of this torsional stiffness, you are able to use a much softer
flex
> >ski (which makes you ski like a rock star, by the way), while maintaining
> >extreme edge hold.
>
> Like a rock star?  I hope not! :-)  (Jammin'& gyratin' with beaucoup
pelvic
> thrust would look pretty stupid on skis, no?)
>
> dana
>
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