Roberts finishes 5th in slalom | SteamboatToday.com

Roberts finishes 5th in slalom

Alpine skier Drew Roberts finished fifth in the slalom Thursday at the FIS World Junior Championships in Bardonecchia, Italy.

Roberts was the top American finisher in the race, which Filip Trejbal of the Czech Republic won. Trejbal finished the race in a time of 1 minute, 24.10 seconds. Sweden’s Mattias Hargin was second at 1:24.74, and Swiss skier Beat Feuz was third at 1:25.02.

Roberts led the Americans with a time of 1:25.15 and was followed by teammate Tim Jitloff in sixth at 1:25.47. The two skiers were the only Americans in the top 20.

Mitt Coats placed 25th in the field of the world’s best junior racers. Steamboat Springs’ Lisa Perricone placed 42nd in the women’s super-G race, which also was held Thursday.

“It’s just a tremendous thing for Drew,” said Chris Puckett, Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club Alpine director. “We are so excited for Drew Roberts. I feel like he is one those guys who works so hard and deserves this more than anyone.”

The World Junior Championships will continue today in Italy with the men’s super-G and the women’s slalom events.

In other skiing news, five Steamboat Springs skiers have earned invitations to the J-2 National Championships based on their results in Rocky Mountain Division races this season.

Suzanne Allbright, Jenny Allen, Cory McConnell, Lane Shipley and Andy White learned they would be attending the National Championships last week, after the final qualifier in Telluride. The Championships will take place March 6 to 13 in Sugarloaf, Maine.

“Making this team is very difficult,” coach Tom Davis said. “It’s not a sure thing — even for the top skiers in our program.”

Davis said the fact that so many Winter Sports Club skiers made the cut proves that the skiers, and the program, are on the right track.

At the start of the ski season, J-3 ski coach Terry DelliQuadri sits down with the athletes in his program and sets goals.

“Getting to the Junior Olympics is the goal of almost every skier in this program,” DelliQuadri said. “Some of them want to get on the podium, but nearly all of them just want the chance to ski at this event.”

On Thursday, the list of Steamboat skiers making this year’s Rocky Mountain-Central Junior Olympic Championships was announced. Among the 80 athletes from the Rocky Mountain Region are 15 from Steamboat. That’s more than any other club in the region. The Central Division also will invite 80 of the top skiers from that region to take part in the championships, which will take place March 6 to 12 in Vail and Beaver Creek.

Steamboat skiers will include Ryan McConnell, Jimmy Hostetler, Taylor Coe, Ryan Coe, Max Marno, Michael Lyon, Jace Wirth, Hig Roberts, Jordan Bernard, Andrew White, Josh Fix, Nelson Kane, Cassady Roberts, Vikki Brown and Jorid Halsnes.

DelliQuadri was happy that so many Winter Sports Club skiers made the team, but he is holding out hope that the club can get in a few more.

More than a dozen Steamboat Springs racers will take part in a lower-level championship series from March 3 to 5 at Ski Cooper near Leadville.

Steamboat skiers Tim Scalo, Ben Paley, Cody Wirth, Mark Dennis, Zach Sternberg, Alex Gibbs, Tony Rende, Mandi DeVos, Charlotte Letson, Monzie Nackard, Caitlin Colgan, Amelia Duell, Jamie Gay, Carolyn Chotvacs, Chrissy Ford and Sarah Dixson have been invited to take part in the championships.

The top overall boy and girl from that championship series will be competing for the Council Cup title. But they also will have a chance to be invited to Vail for the J-3 Junior Olympic Championships, which will take place later in the month.

DelliQuadri said the skiers who plan to compete at the Junior Olympic Championships will fine-tune their skills by taking part in SmartWool super-G races March 4 and 5 in Steamboat.

— To reach John F. Russell call 871-4209

or e-mail jrussell@steamboatpilot.com