Frosty 5/10k Freestyle Cross Country Ski Race Frosty 15k Freestyle Cross Country Ski Race    
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The conditions were frosty fast at the inaugural Frosty Freestyle 5/15K cross country ski race at Huron Meadows Metropark on Saturday, January 16. After a week of above freezing temperatures and bright sun, the weather cooled to below freezing, setting the stage for a fast race course.

Skiers came from all over the lower peninsula of Michigan, plus from Indiana, Illinois and Ohio. Giving it an international flair, one skier was from France and another from Germany. As part of the 22-race Michigan Cup Series, racers from Traverse City, Petoskey, Grayling and other "up north" cities travelled to southeast Michigan in search of Michigan Cup points.

Grand Rapids Nordic's Dave Maclean rocketed around the 15K course to finish first in 37:32 after leading Traverse City's Cliff Onthank (Vasa Club) and John Gravlin (Linwood, Hanson Hills/Cross Country Ski Shop) around the course. Onthank and Gravlin sprinted for the finish, with Onthank getting there first.

Ann Arbor's Cheryl Darton once again showed she's one of the best skiers in Michigan by taking first in the women's 15K. Straits Striders Tracy Hardin skied in second, followed by Catarina Gulledge of Cross County Ski Headquarters fame..

 start of the women's 15K wave at the Frosty Freestyle cross country ski race

The race start was broken into three waves: 15K Men, 15K women (above), and 5K racers.
(Photo by Hal Gould)

In the 5K race, young Alexy Vermeulen was the fastest male, followed by Scotty Albaugh and Bill Bowman. In the women's 5K race, Lisa Kaniewski skied into first. Megan Ditty was second, with Beth Powell rounding out the podium in third.

All skiers raced a 5K loop through the north end of the Huron Meadows Golf course. The 5K racers finished back at the start line while the 15K racers continued on a different loop to the south end of the golf course. After looping back near the start/finish area, the race continued around Malty Lake, a mostly forested area. Each loop of the course was a bit harder than the one just before, with more hills and more turns.

Start of the 5K wave of the Frosty Freestyle cross country ski racer

The 5K racers are off! Many are first time ski racers. Welcome to the sport!
(Photo by Hal Gould)

The weather was great: a little below freezing at the start of the race, maybe a little above freezing by the end. Overcast, but hardly any wind.

Would there be snow?

Given the warm conditions leading up to the race - including one day with the temperatures near 40, many racers were worried about the snow conditions. All were pleasantly surprised at how much snow was on the trail. Frequent grooming by Adam Haberkorn at Huron Meadows kept the trail packed, minimizing loss due to the warm weather and bright sun. On Friday, Haberkorn and crew patched the few bare spots developing on the trail, but the start area looked totaled. Quick thinking: they used a tractor to pile snow, then used a snow blower to spread the snow throughout the start area!

A bigger worry on race day was ice. The temperature dropped to the mid-20's over Friday night and the trail froze up hard. There was some worry that a two downhills near the beginning of the third loop might be a little icy from some skiers. Grooming the morning of the race softened up the conditions enough to make the hills doable.

Leaders arriving at the 5K mark in the Frosty Freestyle 15K cross country ski race

The leaders near the end of the first 5K loop in the 15K event. Dave Maclean (Grand Rapids Nordic Ski Team) leads, followed by Cliff Onthank (Vasa Ski Club), John Gravlin (Hanson Hills/Cross Country Ski Shop), and Aaron Ditty (Team NordicSkiRacer). The order would remain the same 10K later at the finish line.
(Photo by Hal Gould)

Although most skiers skated, a substantial number classic skied - and the hard conditions did cause some problems. The track was very hard and the snow totally transformed. Klister was the wax of choice. Anyone using hard wax struggled. Even no-wax skis slipped a bit. Classic skiers who got out of the tracks generally had better grip.

Those same hard tracks were used by the skaters to pass skiers in front of them, or to take a break from skating. Skaters could be seen doublepoling down several sections of track, with the tracks sometimes faster than the skate lane.

Guess we needed triple redundancy...

Alas, all was not good with the timing: Even though an extra timing device was used as backup to the primary device, both failed during the race, the second failure not identified until nearly all the skiers were in. We have some times, but not very many. My sincere apologies. We're really embarrassed by this...

Results

* indicates self-reported time

Key to teams:  
GRNST Grand Rapids Nordic Ski Team
HHCCSS Hanson Hills/Cross Country Ski Shop (Grayling)
NSR Team NordicSkiRacer.com (southeast Michigan)
Straits Striders Straits Striders (northern Lower Peninsula)
Vasa Club Vasa Club (Traverse City area)
XCHQ Cross Country Ski Headquarters (Roscommon)
5K WOMEN
Bib First
Name
Last
Name
Age Class 5K Overall Gender/ Age Place Gender Place Time City State Team
821 Erin Finn 14-15 19 1 5 West Bloomfield MI  
818 Heather Coutteau 14-15 20 2 6 Rochester Hills MI  

804 Megan Ditty 20-29 7 1 2 24:21 Ann Arbor MI NSR
831 Kate Salvadore 20-29 23 2 9 Northville MI  
806 Gigi Ying 20-29 25 3 10 Ann Arbor MI  
808 Mary Piper 20-29 26 4 11 Ann Arbor MI  

828 Jennifer Hollister 30-39 30 1 15 Washington Twp MI  

809 Lisa Kaniewski 40-49 5 1 1 21:57 Hartland MI  
468 Deanna Skelcy 40-49 18 2 4 Rochester Heights MI Team Skelay
829 Joanne Lande Keeling 40-49 21 3 7 Ann Arbor MI NSR
819 Harlene Coutteau 40-49 22 4 8 Rochester Hills MI  
825 Laurie Sak 40-49 27 5 12 Livonia MI  
826 Donyale Ingagiola 40-49 28 6 13 White Lake MI  

827 Beth Powell 50-59 8 1 3 25:34 Hazel Park MI  
801 Lynn Ludwig 50-59 29 2 14 Ypsilanti MI  
812 Susan Westfall 50-59 31 3 16 Ferndale MI  

5K MEN
Bib First
Name
Last
Name
Age Class 5K Overall Gender/ Age Place Gender Place Time City State Team
810 Garrett Ruffner 11-13 9 1 6 26:04 Tecumsch MI NSR
815 Rem Vermeulen 11-13 11 2 8 27:16 Pinckney MI  

813 Alexey Vermeulen 14-15 1 1 1 17:34 Pinckney MI NSR

822 Scotty Albaugh 16-17 2 1 2 18:43 Waterford MI  
820 Ian Hackbarth 16-17 13 2 10 27:48 Waterford MI  

830 Joshua McCallum 20-29 6 1 5 22:48 Northville MI  
807 Joseph Ross 20-29 17 2 14 29:43 Ypsilanti MI  
802 Theodore Wenzlick 20-29 24 3 15 34:14* Livonia MI  

823 David Kasperowicz 30-39 16 1 13 29:20 Grosse Pt. Woods MI  

816 Bill Bowman 40-49 3 1 3 20:21 Brighton MI  
803 David Sasaki 40-49 10 2 7 27:06 Ann Arbor MI  
824 Mark Donnelly 40-49 12 3 9 27:27 Dexter MI  
811 John Machowicz 40-49 14 4 11 27:54 Pinckney MI  
814 Peter McCullough 40-49 15 5 12 28:16 Northville MI  

817 Cecil Moix 60-69 4 1 4 21:18 Royal Oak MI  

15K WOMEN
Bib First
Name
Last
Name
Age Class 5K Overall Gender/ Age Place Gender Place Time City State Team
424 Margaret Robinson 18-19 75 1 7 East Lansing MI NSR
805 Jane Gregg 18-19 85 2 11 Ann Arbor MI  

434 Catarina Gulledge 20-29 65 1 3 Roscommon MI XCHQ
423 Emily Flynn 20-29 71 2 5 Okemos MI NSR
459 Kate Vanltoomissa 20-29 82 3 9 Northville MI  
851 Hilary Witbrodt 20-29 87 4 12 55:39* Grayling MI HHCCSS
489 Adrienne Watts 20-29 105 5 15 Chicago IL XCHQ

490 Heather Lemos 30-39 99 1 13 Grosse Pt. Woods MI XCHQ

404 Cheryl Darnton 40-49 46 1 1 Ann Arbor MI  
499 Bonnie Karas 40-49 76 2 8 Grayling MI HHCCSS
448 Joanne Cavaletto 40-49 100 3 14 Ann Arbor MI NSR
873 Lavinia Ratfoul 40-49 111 4 17 Temperance MI  
878 Judy Berghoff 40-49 114 5 18 Brighton MI  
482 Brenda Vincent 40-49 120 6 22 Springport MI  

870 Tracy Hardin 50-59 51 1 2 Chegoygan MI Straits Striders
455 Sandy Triebold 50-59 69 2 4 Spring Arbor MI HHCCSS
854 Linda Weeks 50-59 73 3 6 Lansing MI XCHQ
471 Karen Dawson 50-59 83 4 10 farmington Hills MI NSR
432 Yvonne Gaines 50-59 110 5 16 Webberville MI  
500 Barb Slovisky 50-59 118 6 20 East Lansing MI XCHQ
415 Julie Hewlett 50-59 119 7 21 Tecumseh MI NSR
401 Mary Burrows 50-59 121 8 23 Pinckney MI  
875 Linda Hunt 50-59 124 9 24 East Lansing MI XCHQ

439 Beth Caldwell 70-79 117 1 19 1:23:56* Ann Arbor MI XCHQ

15K MEN
Bib First
Name
Last
Name
Age Class 5K Overall Gender/ Age Place Gender Place Time City State Team
410 Aaron Ditty 20-29 4 1 4 Ann Arbor MI NSR
852 Daniel Yankus 20-29 5 2 5 Commerce MI  
477 Melzar Coulter 20-29 7 3 7 Allegan MI  
425 David Crawford 20-29 12 4 12 East Lansing MI NSR
411 Alex Smith 20-29 16 5 16 Ann Arbor MI  
861 Kevin Pline 20-29 32 6 32 Plymouth MI  
856 Gavin Kentch 20-29 40 7 40 48:28* Ann Arbor MI  
478 Paul Egler 20-29 68 8 65 Grand Rapids MI  
860 Kaoru Kawashima 20-29 79 9 71 Northville MI  
859 Matt Kemp 20-29 97 10 85 Toledo MI  
493 Christopher Roper 20-29 113 11 96 Novi MI  

484 Scott Ries 30-39 25 1 25 South Lyon MI  
864 Lucas Wall 30-39 33 2 33 Superior Twp MI NSR
460 Chris Malby 30-39 37 3 37 Mt. Pleasant MI HHCCSS
487 Kevin Dittmer 30-39 53 4 51 Novi MI NSR
495 Warren Samberg 30-39 58 5 56 Ann Arbor MI  
486 Michael Thiel 30-39 63 6 61 Grosse Pt. Park MI  
464 Dan Motowski 30-39 70 7 66 Howell MI NSR
879 Peter Wojik 30-39 86 8 75 Plymouth MI  
407 Kevin Maki 30-39 88 9 76 59:48* Ann Arbor MI  
871 Nathan Callaghan 30-39 93 10 81 Fenton MI  
463 Christopher Anderson 30-39 103 11 89 East Grand Rapids MI GRNST
440 Brett Dowdican 30-39 107 12 92 Shelby Twp. MI  

430 Glenn Goodman 40-49 6 1 6 Bellaire MI HHCCSS
467 Jon Morgan 40-49 9 2 9 Mildford MI HHCCSS
443 Dell Todd 40-49 10 3 10 Grand Rapids MI GRNST
438 Larry Kanaby 40-49 14 4 14 Bad Axe MI XCHQ
447 Dave Fanslow 40-49 18 5 18 Ann Arbor MI NSR
453 Michael Seaman 40-49 20 6 20 Mt. Pleasant MI GRNST
461 Leonide Tikh 40-49 23 7 23 Bloomfield Hills MI NSR
449 Jamie Green 40-49 27 8 27 Gaylord MI HHCCSS
414 John Britton 40-49 28 9 28 Zanesfield OH  
462 Julian Kuz 40-49 31 10 31 Ada MI  
872 Stephen Steffke 40-49 34 11 34 Weidman MI  
857 Jeff Potter 40-49 35 12 35 Williamston MI Outyourbackdoor
417 Mark Donakowski 40-49 41 13 41 Ypsilanti MI  
867 Eric Holmes 40-49 44 14 44 Pinckney MI Racing Greyhounds
444 Herb Ashbeck 40-49 45 15 45 Davisburg MI White Line
877 Brian Hallstrom 40-49 49 16 48 Ann Arbor MI  
408 Ted Bondie 40-49 52 17 50 Ypsilanti MI  
858 Tim Potter 40-49 59 18 57 Okemos MI  
469 Thomas Kerns 40-49 60 19 58 52:26* Plymouth MI  
406 Tim Feldkamp 40-49 61 20 59 Ann Arbor MI NSR
412 Bob Triebold 40-49 62 21 60 South Bend IN GRNST
869 Todd Soule 40-49 67 22 64 Holland MI  
483 Hubert Smulski 40-49 77 23 69 Grand Blanc MI NSR
480 Sam Gillespie 40-49 78 24 70 MI XCHQ
426 John McKeon 40-49 80 25 72 Swartz Creek MI  
472 Terry Ritter 40-49 81 26 73 Royal Oak MI XCHQ
433 Dave Ernst 40-49 84 27 74 Sandusky MI XCHQ
403 James Malott 40-49 91 28 79 Ann Arbor MI  
445 Joseph Bonadies 40-49 92 29 80 Clarkston MI  
457 Adam Danes 40-49 96 30 84 Northville MI Straits Striders
866 Tom Suliot 40-49 102 31 88 Mt. Clemens MI  
865 Aaron Croff 40-49 112 32 95 Gregory MI  
456 Brad Plymale 40-49 116 33 98 Northville MI Straits Striders

475 Dave Maclean 50-59 1 1 1 37:22 Ludington MI GRNST
473 Cliff Orthank 50-59 2 2 2 Traverse City MI Vasa Club
850 John Gravlin 50-59 3 3 3 Linwood MI HHCCSS
474 Don Camp 50-59 8 4 8 Grand Haven MI GRNST
451 Pep Pepke 50-59 11 5 11 Gex France  
428 Randal Bladel 50-59 13 6 13 South Bend IN GRNST
491 Doug Heady 50-59 15 7 15 Ann Arbor MI NSR
497 Chris Weingartz 50-59 17 8 17 Petsokey MI Straits Striders
419 Jim Pryor Jr. 50-59 21 9 21 Saginaw MI HHCCSS
418 Robin Luce 50-59 22 10 22 Central Lake MI HHCCSS
446 Douglas Cornell 50-59 24 11 24 Corunna MI NSR
450 Bruce Barton 50-59 26 12 26 Homer MI HHCCSS
420 Frank Rynalski 50-59 30 13 30 Bay City MI XCHQ
863 Matt Daly 50-59 36 14 36 Pinckney MI HHCCSS
874 Charles Powell 50-59 38 15 38 Hazel Park MI  
442 Devan Thielfoldt 50-59 39 16 39 Troy MI XCHQ
427 Mark Madorski 50-59 42 17 42 Leonard MI NSR
498 Ed Lubanski 50-59 43 18 43 Southfield MI  
435 Mark LaMoreaux 50-59 47 19 46 Ann Arbor MI NSR
452 Jeffrey Moore 50-59 48 20 47 Northville MI Straits Striders
409 Reinhold Cordella 50-59 50 21 49 Ypsilanti MI  
465 Dan Nolan 50-59 54 22 52 Holland MI GRNST
405 David Darnton 50-59 55 23 53 Ann Arbor MI  
431 John Love 50-59 64 24 62 St. Johns MI GRNST
868 Jeff Pike 50-59 66 25 63 54:15* Highland MI XCHQ
481 John Harris 50-59 72 26 67 Holland OH  
416 Spencer Ruffner 50-59 74 27 68 56:05* Tecumseh MI NSR
494 Tim Bowen 50-59 89 28 77 Lathrop Village MI  
485 John Koski 50-59 90 29 78 Dearborn MI  
441 Marvin Boluyt 50-59 95 30 83 Ann Arbor MI  
492 Greg Worrell 50-59 98 31 86 Detroit MI NSR
458 Mark Abbe 50-59 101 32 87 Saginaw MI  
479 Wolfgang Uhrig 50-59 104 33 90 Troy MI  
876 Maurice Dewey 50-59 108 34 93 Bloomfield Hills MI  
855 Larry Mergentine 50-59 109 35 94 Ortonville MI XCHQ
466 James Franklin 50-59 115 36 97 Canton MI  

413 William Kalz 60-69 19 1 19 Pinckney MI NSR
422 Steve Smiigiel 60-69 29 2 29 Ada MI GRNST
421 Lee Ries 60-69 56 3 54 Howell MI  
862 Wes Watt 60-69 57 4 55 Redford MI  
429 Ray Drysdale 60-69 94 5 82 Albion MI XCHQ
496 Jim Gaveski 60-69 106 6 91 Plymouth MI  

853 Marvin Stevenson 70-79 122 7 99 Rochester Hills MI  
488 Gerald Rojeck 70-79 123 8 100 Howell MI