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Erik Schlopy wins GS as Alpine nationals finish up in Mammoth

Erik Schlopy wins GS as Alpine nationals finish up in Mammoth{mosimage}Erik Schlopy won the final event of the U.S. Alpine National Championships, the men’s giant slalom, winning both runs in soft snow and beating out Dane Spencer of Boise, Idaho.

“Doesn’t matter what the time differential was,” said Schlopy, who won by exactly two seconds. “Just to have two good runs, and going into the summer with that confidence and coming back next year and skiing the way I know I can, which wasn’t anything like I skied this year. It was a good end to a disappointing season.”

Schlopy’s combined time was 2:42.33. Dane Spencer took the silver in 2:44.33 and third place went to Evan Weiss, a former U.S. D Team racer, (his time was 2:45.32).

“It’s pretty good, it’s been along time coming,” said Weiss. “I feel I’ve been one of the best college guys this season on that circuit. There’s about five of us, and if anybody skis great we can all get on the podium. Today was just my day, my skis were running, and I was relaxed.”

Weiss is now a student at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire. “College skiing is up and coming, people have to look out for those guys,” he said. “It’s becoming a more competitive circuit, and a good place to develop as a skier. Especially for the younger skiers in their early 20s, because you’ve got guys like Schlopy, pushing the limit about how old you can be as a ski racer, and you graduate at 23, you’ve got a decade to ski race great. And get an education.”

The top junior of the day was Tim Kelley, a member of the extended Cochran clan of Vermont.

“I’ve been having trouble all season leaning in, so I just really worked on staying level, and trying to snap off quick turns, and I just got a new pair of Jimmy’s skis.”

Kelley’s best previous result was 23-point race at a UVM carnival. “I just wanted to go as fast as I could, I made it here so I’ve nothing to lose,” said the Eastern Cup overall champ. “It’s been my best winter, switched skis and cut my points in half, the slalom I made some disappointing mistake, so I just wanted to come in here do well.”

2005 OROWEAT U.S. ALPINE CHAMPIONSHIPS
Mammoth Mountain, CA – April 5, 2005
Men’s Giant Slalom

1. Erik Schlopy, Park City, Utah, 2:42.33
2. Dane Spencer, Boise, Idaho, 2:44.33
3. Evan Weiss, Seattle, 2:45.32
4. Tom Rothrock, Cashmere, Wash., 2:45.34
5. Jake Zamansky, Aspen, Colo., 2:45.46
6. Brad Spence, Canada, 2:46.23
7. Timothy Kelley, Starksboro, Vt., 2:46.44
8. Scott Macartney, Redmond, Wash., 2:46.59
9. Steve Nyman, Orem, Utah, 2:46.63
10. Chip Knight, Stowe, Vt., 2:46.80

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