CXC Marathon Cup Kicks off Its Third Season

The CXC Marathon Cup presented by Avant Techno is one of the most grueling cross-country race series in North America and is set to kick off its third season.


Seeley Hills 42K Classic / Seeley (WI)
January 13, 2018

The 2018 series is split between classic and skate racing, with two classic races, three skate weekends, and one skiathlon weekend; with the races divided equally between the three states, two races in Michigan, two in Wisconsin, and two in Minnesota.

Top 200 individuals in each age group in each race score points. Points ranking updated and posted after each event.

There are four basic competition categories: Overall, Age-Indexed Overall, Age Class, and Team/Club with the winners battling for a total purse prize of $60,000 between the six events.



All event participants are included in the age group rankings which are posted a few days after each event.

As you compare your position with your competition, consider purchasing a CXC SUPPORTER MEMBERSHIP and help support skiing and ski racing in the Midwest.


CXC Marathon Cup Standings Announced

Final Point Rankings Released

With the conclusion of the CXC Marathon Cup Series presented by AVANT Techo, come the final point rankings.

After an unseasonable warm winter with questionable snow, the grand finale weekend proved a relative success at the UP Health System Great Bear Chase Ski Marathon in Calumet, MI.

The Series which includes races within each of the three main central states (Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota) is sanctioned and scored by Central Cross Country Ski Association.

The Marathon Cup Series awards four competition categories, Individual Overall, Individual Age-Indexed overall, Individual Age Class and Team.



Matt Liebsch
Chris Pappathopoulos
Krystof Kopal


Isabella Howden
Felicia Gesior
Alice Flanders




Matt Liebsch
Michael Mandli
Chris Pappathopoulos


Isabella Howden
Felicia Gesior
Jan Guenther



MEN 0-29

– Kristof Kopal

– Kieran Jones

– David Joda

MEN 30-39

-Matt Liebsch

-Chris Pappathopoulos

-Daniel Luoma

MEN 40-49

– Jacob Kjome

– Terrence Maag

– Eric Brandt

MEN 50-59

– Ray Johnson

– Piotr Bednarski

– Allen Hanson

MEN 60-69

– Michael Mandli

– Terry Tansey

– Randal Bladel

MEN 70 +

-Donn Christensen

-Ernie Brumbaugh

-Charles Duede

WOMEN 0-29

– Isabella Howden

– Felicia Gesior

– Alice Flanders

WOMEN 30-39

-Nicole Harvey

– Kathleen Dewahl

– Elaine Nelson

WOMEN 40-49

– Sherry Martin

– Kim Rudd

– Bonnie Weiskopf Albrecht

WOMEN 50-59

– Jan Guenther

– Leslie Hale

– Sandra Pera

WOMEN 60-69

– Melissa Behr

– Maddie McAlister

– Carol Markham-Cousins

“Despite all of the weather related challenges thrown at event organizers and volunteers this year, it was great to see the Avant Tecno CXC Marathon Cup grow and mature.

The level of competition definitely increased with more appearances from skiers with World Cup and World Championship experience, as well as college skiers and skiers coming down from Canada.

Fortunately the ability of some events to hold races on man made snow has grown dramatically in just the last year allowing for safe and competitive races where previously they might have been canceled or held on much less than ideal courses.

Due to the commitment of the Midwest skiing community the future looks bright for the series regardless of what Mother Nature has in store.”

– Chris Pappathopoulos BNS 


CXC Marathon Cup Final Stop

Things are looking good for the 2017 Great Bear Chase, – the final stop in the CXC Marathon Cup series. The Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula had 20″ of snow between February 23-26, and the Swedetown Trails have a base of more than two feet.

Registration continues, with another price increase coming March 5.


Presented by Avant Techno, the Cup encompasses six most prominent marathons in the Midwest (MN, WI, MI) into one unified competition.

Contenders of the series will race in six marathons split between two classic, two skate and one skiathlon weekend and one weekend with back-to-back classic and skate races. All Marathon Cup participants are automatically scored in age group, overall and age-index overall categories.

No registration required to earn individual points. Anyone participating in a Cup race is automatically scored for the overall, age-indexed, and age-group awards. However, registration is encouraged; help support skiing and ski racing in the Central division!

Marathon Cup After 4th Stop

MORA, MINNESOTA – Another unseasonably warm marathon complete with a lot of artificial snow. The 58K freestyle event was close relative to the previous marathons this season in the men’s categotry.

Matthew Liebsch completed the course in 2:03:12.15 maintaining his spot at the top of the podium. Second place went to Andrew Brown with a time of 2:06:05.32 and Cory Ellertson rounded out top three by fractions of a second with a time of 2:06:05.53.

For the 58k women’s race Alice Flanders won with a time of 2:18:29.58 followed by Canadian Isabella Howden with 2:22:31.67 and Jan Guenther in third not far behind (2:22:45.84).

In the 35k Freestyle men top three were separates by mere seconds. Paul Olson took the lead in by less than one second (1:07:13.24) ahead of Nathan Porath (1:07:14.04) who was a second ahead of Joseph Martin (1:07:15.27).

On the women’s side, Laura Cattaneo took the lead in 1:14:16.62, just two seconds behind was Ashley Herman in 1:14:18.83 and third was Margie Nelson in a time a 1:16:12.93

The 42k Classic men’s division title this weekend went to Steven Scoles (1:55:01.41) A close second went to Evan Pengelly completing the course in 1:55:05.68. Third went to Justin Pavlish (1:56:37.91).

On the women’s side Kathleen DeWahl completed the course in 2:08:17.85, Josie Nilsson took second in 2:11:36.87 and Kate Ellis took a close third in 2:12:08:16.


Saturday, March 11, 2017 Great Bear Chase Ski Marathon, Calumet, MI


City of Lakes Loppet – the third stop on the CXC Avant Techno Marathon Cup Series


Photo Credit:

THEODORE WIRTH PARK, in Minneapolis, MN was packed with ski enthusiast for the City of Lakes Loppet.

Event organizers did a fantastic job in creating a course that would hold the 226 racers who came out for the Hoigaard’s Classical Marathon. The lack of natural snow did not stop skiers from completing the hilly 32km course, which was 5 laps around the 6km man-made loop.


Photo Credit:

In the men’s event, Matthew Liebsch (Orono, MN) 1:14:05 took the lead by over two minutes to second place finisher Chris Pappathopoulos from Sun Prairie, WI (1:16:09). Rounding out the podium was Krystof Kopal (Marquette, MI) with a time of 1:17:17.


Photo Credit:

On the women’s side with an astonishing lead was CXC elite team winner Felicia Gesior of Marquette, MI finshing the course in 1:28:51, nearly seven minutes ahead of Canadian skier Isabella Howden (Barrie, ON) 1:35:49. Kelly Skillicorn of Winona, MN skied to her third place podium in a time of 1:36:20.

With just three more races in the series, this weekend marked the halfway point in the CXC Marathon Cup point standing.

The series will continue with the last three races, including the highly anticipated American Birkebeiner just about two weeks away.


Saturday, February 11, 2017 Vasaloppet USA 58km Freestyle, Mora MN
Saturday, February 25, 2017 American Birkebeiner, Hayward WI
Saturday, March 11, 2017 Great Bear Chase Ski Marathon, Calumet, MI



Noquemanon Ski Marathon – the second stop on the CXC Avant Techno Marathon Cup Series

The CXC Avant Techno Marathon Cup Series will continue with the City of Lakes Loppet in Minneapolis, MN on February 4th.

SCHEDULE OF LOPPET EVENTS (all races at Wirth Park)

• Finn Sisu Sprints: Friday 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
• Hoigaard’s Classic Marathon: Saturday 9 a.m.
• Columbia Sportswear Skate Marathon: Sunday 9 a.m.

** CXC will be providing race wax services for CXC Master Team skiers, and to skiers who either won or purchased wax support certificates. CXC Race Wax Service will include HF race wax and Top Coats; plus, kick wax application. Skis will be ready at the START area before each race.


Rain and warm weather leading up to the second stop on the CXC Maraton Cup race series – the Noquemanon Ski Marathon in Marquette MI did not stop race organizers and volunteers from hosting the event for the 19th consecutive year. Race distances were shortened, however, the 50k turned to a 31k while the half marathon (24k) was altered to 23k.

CXC Elite team member Kyle Bratrud preserved his champion title, winning the 31k Classic event coming to the finish line with a time of 1:31:35.3.

“The 2017 Noquemanon was a great opportunity for me to get a longer workout in. The beautiful race course was complimented nicely by a dumping of fresh snow the night before the race which made for some serious trail blazing for me at the front. That being said, I got a great workout in and was fortunate enough to win my second Noque in a row, so I have no complaints,” said Bratrud.

The race was close between Kyle and second place finisher Chris Pappathopoulous, who took second by a mere 1.1 seconds. Rounding out the podium in the men’s classic 31k was Norther Michigan University skier Frederik Schwencke with a time of 1:31:46.3.

In the men’s freestyle division, Zachary Nelson took first in another close race just 1.4 seconds ahead of Zach Varty with a time of 1:30.53.6.

The 31k classic title on the women’s side went to Isabella Howden (1:44:38.6) crossing the finish line just 11.2 seconds ahead of CXC Elite Team member Felicia Gesior, and Rebecca Davis rounding out the top three.

In the women’s freestyle 31k, Jenna Dickinson took home a win with a time of 1:44:14.9, followed by Vicki Asmus in second and Lindsey Kriete in third.

Andy Liebner took home the 23k classic title with an astonishing lead of nearly 9 minutes ahead of second place finisher Mike Wiitala and third place Jeremy Steele. Liebner completed in the course in 1:17:50.0.


Classic 23k women’s winner was Joan Rundman who completed the course in 1:33:36.8 followed by Amelia Schankwitz and Molly Stewart.

The freestyle 23k title went to local Marquette skier Daniel Dehlin with a finishing time of 1:03:35.6, nearly three minutes ahead of Kevin Tarras and Marquette high school senior Ethan Hall.

On the women’s side, Lindsey Dehlin took the 23K freestyle title with a time of 1:07:07.1 making a couples sweep for the Dehlin family. Hanna Torvi and Jan Haase took second and third respectively.

CXC Avant Techno Marathon Cup – After Seeley Hills Classic

The CXC Avant Techno Marathon Cup series kicked off this past weekend at the Seeley Hills Classic. Over 240 competitors raced in either the 42km and 22km events, some hoping to complete their first ski marathon while others raced their way to complete the first of six marathons this season with their sights on the overall 2017 CXC Marathon Cup title.

Conditions were favorable for everyone who came out to the Northern Wisconsin including overall winner Matt Liebsch who won the 42km Classic with a time of 1:50:08. Krystof Kopal (1:50:26) came to the finish line for a close second followed by third place finisher Thomas Kendrick with a time of 01:54:30.



Matt Liebsch (right)

Leaders in the 42km female category were Isabella Howden (02:14:20) followed by Elaine Nelson just over one minute behind. Rounding out the podium was Kim Rudd with a time of 02:17:37.

Overall winners for the 22km Classic where Andre Tilman (0:54:15) Leif Hanson (0:54:23) and Mitchell Miller (54:35).

Women podiums for the 22km classic were earned by Kelly Skillicorn (01:01:14), followed very closely by Rachel Elvester (01:01:38) and third place finisher Zoe Reker (01:03:37).

The next stop in the 2017 CXC Avant Tecno Marathon Cup will be the Noquemanon Ski Marathon Saturday, January 28th.