Chris “Hand of Doom” Rose skied a smart tactical race and won his first SUFFERFEST World Championship in spite of gale force winds relentlessly buffeting the course.
Winds raged for most of the day and the start was tentative at best, with skiers tucking in behind one another for as much wind-break as they could find. Young Aaron Huneck made the first attack on the day, but ultimately paid the price for going it alone in the wind. Rose chiseled away at Huneck’s lead and eventually caught him and played him against the wind before making a final attack in the last kilometer of the race.
Huneck straggled into second, but was almost caught at the line by Jim “Harvester of Sorrow” Kobak. Kobak spent most of the day battling Keith Kogut and Sean Halligan on the windy slopes. Kogut was the first to get broken – albeit not as badly as at the CLimb to the Castle, and Kobak slugged it out with Halligan before pulling away with just over a km to go to the wind-swept summmit.
The field was a little lighter than in years past, with racers undoubtedly scared away by the blustery conditions. However strong skiers from HURT Nordic, Saratoga Biathlon and Saranac Lake Nordic Ski Club represented well, but Peru Nordic was able to capture 2 of the three podium spots and bring the SUFFERFEST World Championship Trophy back home to Peru.
1. Rose – Peru Nordic (38:50), 2. Huneck – HURT Nordic (40:22). 3. Kobak- Peru Nordic (40:42)… 4. Halligan- Saratoga Biathlon, 5. Kogut-Saranac Lake Nordic, 6. Adam- Saratoga Biathlon, 7. Patrick-HURT Nordic, 8. Dave Paarlberg-Kvam- HURT Nordic, 9. Owen- HURT Nordic, 10. Gabriella F- Saratoga Biathlon. 11. Brian White- Peru Nordic.
Next on the calendar… SNOW!!!