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J5 skier Claudia Luthy, of Durango, leads the pack during a cross-country event at Howelsen Hill on Friday.

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Steamboat cross-country skiers shine at Howelsen event

Cross-country races to continue Saturday in Steamboat

With long climbs and steep, tricky descents, the cross-country skiing course at Howelsen Hill in Steamboat Springs proved to be all that some of the nation’s best skiers could handle Friday, with college athletes grasping for breath as they slowly chugged up demanding slopes.

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