2018 Junior National and NENSA Teams Announced

The Central Cross Country Skiing (CXC) together with the Midwest and Great Lakes Junior Committees are pleased to announce this year’s Midwest and Great Lakes Junior National Teams that will be competing at the 2018 US Ski & Snowboard Cross Country Junior National Championship March 4-11th at Soldier Hollow (Utah).

* Expect some changes to the list as confirmations and declines roll in this week.

Photo Credit: SkinnySki.com

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Also, the New England Nordic Ski Association’s U16 Championships at Gore Mountain Nordic Center in North Creek, New York will welcome members of the 2018 U16 NENSA Team: eight U16 (ages 14-15) boys and girls from the Midwest.


U.S. SKI & SNOWBOARD XC JUNIOR NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS

Fans will be treated to a glimpse of the future of Team USA as the best athletes under the age of 20 face off at historic Soldier Hollow.  More information and a preliminary race schedule can be found below.

Seeding in CXC Cup

We are getting many questions on seeding in CXC Cup. Here are the seeding rules for CXC Cup that have been given to the race OCs: 

 U16 Seeding:

  • In Midwest only Junior National Qualifier, racers will be seeded by the following (in priority order):
  1. USSA Points
  1. Midwest JNQ Points
  1. USSA General licenses or otherwise unpointed CXC members

If a combined Midwest/Great Lakes Qualifier racers will be seeded by the following (in priority order):

1. USSA Points
2. USSA General licenses or otherwise unpointed CXC members

U18/U20/U23/USSA or FIS Licensed Seniors/Masters:

1. Seeding based on best of USSA, FIS or CFIS(College Points
2. USSA General licenses or otherwise unpointed CXC member U18/U20/U23/Senior will be assigned 990 points

Thus far we have been having joint JNQs, thus U.S. Ski & Snowboard points are the only seeding method we have available. All others are in the random draw. 
 
We should all be advising athletes that if they are concerned about seeding, anybody who is going to want to be seeded properly needs to purchase a competitor license. Taking the route of not purchasing a U.S. Ski & Snowboard license has the consequence of not being seeded with the U.S. Ski & Snowboard licensed skiers.

Everybody has to understand that it is hard on race organizations and the timing companies when the athletes who want good seeding are not purchasing U.S. Ski & Snowboard Competitor Licenses prior to Oct. 15 if a renewal or prior to registering for the races if a first time license purchase.

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RUNNING/SEEDING OF SPRINT QUALIFYING AND INDIVIDUAL START RACES

1. U.S. Ski & Snowboard NRL pointed skiers/FIS pointed skiers: seed groups TBD based upon number of registrants;

2. U.S. Ski & Snowboard competitor licensed and no NRL points, USBA licensed skiers and no U.S. Ski & Snowboard NRL points: seed groups TBD using Midwest JNQ points as a preference and then random draw those with our points; A ~1 minute gap;

3. CXC only competitor members with Midwest JNQ points: seed groups TBD using Midwest JNQ points.

4. CXC only competitor members with out JNQ points: randomly drawn; A ~2 minute gap (provided the race jury does not have concerns with this group impeding or obstructing lapping skiers);

5. Anybody else participating in an “open” class not officially part of the CXC Cup, “Open” racers are not eligible to move on to sprint heats, as sprint heats are CXC Cup events requiring CXC Membership.

 

Joe Haggenmiller
CXC Director of Athletics
joe.h@cxcskiing.org

Entry Fees And Costs To Put On A Race

This week, I want to address race org feedback and the work that goes into any ski race, but specifically a CXC Cup race.

For starters, the feedback I am generally looking for when discussing a race weekend is feedback that a good race organization can reasonably take action on.  Things like the schedule, course control, adjustments in grooming, placing of course marshals, race lengths, rules that were not followed, etc.  Feedback that is achievable is what we need.  We had a request for wax trucks.  Asking for ventilated wax trucks to come in for a weekend is in theory a step forward and an improvement.  But, in reality, such a request is not helpful as 1. there are not any such trucks available in our area, and 2. such a request is cost prohibitive with the resources we have as a region.  I will filter feedback such as this from our race orgs, as we do not live in Utopia.

After the Gitchi Gami Games, I got some feedback that race prices were too high and an impediment participation.  I understand that race entry fees have been drifting up, but so have the costs to put on a race.

Here is a sample conservative  CXC Cup Super JNQ Budget:

Revenue Total:  $23,400
Entry Fees – JNQ – 2 races – $60 x 200 – $12,000
Entry Fees – JNQ – 1 race – $35 x 20 – $700
Entry Fees – NCAA College – 2 races – $60 x 60 – $3600
Entry Fees – Youth Cup – 2 races – $30 x 60 – $1800
Entry Fees – Youth Cup – 1 race – $15 x 20 – $300
Entry Fees – Open – 2 races – $60 x 20 – $1200
Entry Fee Total – $19,000 from 370 racers Youth Cup to College
CXC Support (Consulting, Race Supplies) – $3000 value in kind/trade
Lodging Support – 4 rooms x 2 nights ($100/rm night) – $800
Concessions Sales – $500 (May be done by a local non profit partner and thus be $0)
Expenses Total:  $22,550
Race Administration Total – $9850
USSA/FIS Sanctioning and Head Taxes – $1500
Postage, Phone, Copier, Paper, etc. – $300
Registration and Data Services – $500
Advertising and Promotion – $250
Web Services – $250
Awards/Medals – $500
Competitor Gifts – $1000 (could be CXC merchandise such as a ski ties)
Coaches Meeting Refreshments – $250
Volunteer Hospitality, Refreshments and Meals – $1500
Volunteer Appreciation – $1000 (could be CXC merchandise such as a buff)

Comp Lodging – (TDs, Timers, VIPs) 4 rooms x 2 nights ($100/rm night) – $800
TD Expenses (TD and Asst TD) Total – $450
Travel – $150
Per Diem – $300 ($50/day NRL, $100/day FIS)

Race Production Total – $13,500
Site Use Fees – $5000
(Grooming Expenses/Daily Trail Passes/Snowmaking Costs/Etc.)
Contracted Timing Services – $4000
Walkie Talkie Radio Rentals – $200
Portable Toilets – $1500
Tent Rentals – $800
Heater Rentals – $500
Generator Rentals – $1500
Miscellaneous Total – $750
Profits/Losses Total:  +$~850

As you can see, there is not a lot of money to be made on hosting these events.  Yes, sponsorship could help make an event very profitable.  But, most of our race orgs are having a hard time simply getting comped rooms for the TDs, so expecting our race orgs to find local sponsorship in the thousands of dollars to support a CXC Cup race is unrealistic.  Some may look at the race production fees and say that they may not be necessary for many of our venues.  This may be true, but is only true because these venues have invested in the infrastructure to host races at a high level, and their investment should not be denied a return.

I will support our race orgs being able to be profitable for a race weekend.  At best, it is a very good weekend for our race orgs to turn a profit of $5000 for their non profit organizations.  When you figure that to make this $5000, it takes more than 60 volunteers on average 8+ hours a piece, and a core of race Chiefs that are putting in countless hours in preparation, this is easily a 1000 hours or more of work, or $5/hr if an org has a good weekend.  There are also many weekends where race orgs break even or raise less than $2000.  For the amount of work going into these events, pricing seems on the mark to me.

There have also been questions about who we are subsidizing.  If you look at race entry fees, you will see we have given youth a lower price point.  Organizationally, CXC has determined that youth are the group we want to encourage with a lower entry fee and reduce the barrier to entry.  It is our feeling organizationally that the junior ages on up should all be paying the same rate, whether they are a novice high schooler making their first jump into regional racing or they are more experienced and hoping to make the podium.  At the end of the day, the costs to host a race per racer are the same for the novice or the expert.

With respect to CXC head taxes, it is not cost free for CXC to be involved in sanctioning the races, scoring the races, promoting the races, assisting with data management, advising local race orgs, etc.  Services have costs to them that need to be accounted for and the head tax is the best way to make sure those who are getting the benefits are sharing in the burden of paying for these services.

The bottom line is  I do not disagree with the thoughts that a CXC Cup race weekend is no cheap endeavor.  However, this being said, the difference between an entry fee along the lines of $30 for a weekend as opposed to the current $60 for a weekend does not to me seem to be the limiting factor of participation when you look at the other costs of transportation, lodging, meals and waxing.  (Even if the weekend was $10-$20 for entries, I don’t see the entry fee being the limiting factor.)  The days of waxing a single pair of skis with a limited number of hydrocarbon glide waxes and one line of kick waxes out of the car trunk, skiing on a trail set with a snowmobile/track sled and the races being hand timed are in the nostalgic past.  The sport has changed and modernized at a significant increased cost to participate.  That is the world we live in, we can either resist it with little success or we can understand it and do our best to deal with it and move forward.

I hope our club leadership can join me in this understanding, pass this reality along to our membership (both your local club’s and also CXC’s in general), and support our race organizations who are working hard to provide high quality events for a small return to their organizations.

Joe Haggenmiller
CXC Director of Athletics
joe.h@cxcskiing.org

CXC Marathon Cup: first two legs complete

The Marathon Cup is off and running with the first two legs complete and the City of Lakes Loppet and Mora Vasaloppet quickly approaching.

Points standings are available here: https://nordicbase.ski/rankings/

In the 2 classic races, racers have faced different challenges, with Seeley having cold temps and a delayed start and the Noquemanon having icy conditions after warm temps friday and colder weather rolling in overnight. Racers will get a reprieve from kick waxing now as the next three races are Freestyle.

Caitlin Gregg, in her quest to win another Birkie, is off to a hot start with dominating performances in the Seeley Hills Classic and the Noquemanon. Her husband Brian had a strong race at Seeley Hills for the win and then sat out the Noquemanon, where his CXC Ski Team teammate Kyle Bratrud carried the torch for the win.

In the series scoring, Caitlin is running away on the women’s side, but will not compete in the CXC Marathon Cup again until the Birkie. On the men’s side, Thomas Kendrick has a narrow lead over perennial favorite Chri s Pappathopoulos and somewhat new commer David Joda. Look for these races to get interesting.

Up next is the City of Lakes Loppet, where Matt Liebsch is a skier to watch for the men on his hometown course. On the women’s side, expect strong competition from a number of LNR LEMONS and other top 10 ranked women like Bonnie Weiskopf and Marit Sonnesyn.