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Great weather and fast conditions for Ski Fest

Sun, Oct  21, 2012 - By Mike Muha

The first XC ski race of the winter in North America was held under beautiful sunny skies and a firm but compliant trail. Temperatures reached near 60F with little wind. Racers could be seen in shorts and t-shirts as they skied the Ski Fest course. Mike Wagnar (Swix/Fischer regional rep) spent the entire time racking and packing the snow that had been deposited by many Vasa Ski Club volunteers over the past several days from the Zamboni at the local ice rink.

Climbing the hill on the Ski Fest cross country ski course

Mike spent quite a bit of time salting the snow - on old alpine racing trick, especially on the uphills and corners where it took the greatest beating. The salt melts the top layer of snow, which then refreezes from the cold snow underneath, making the trail harder.

In a repeat from last year, Amy Powell and Race Director Eli Brown were the fastest skiers. Michigan Cup points were awarded to all racers.

Amy Powell wins the Ski Fest cross country ski race

Qualifier results (best time from two tries. Two laps on the course around 175 meters.)

1.  Eli Brown 39 26.59 Vasa Ski Club
2.  David Butryn 15 29.81 Vasa Ski Club
3.  Scott Howard 42 29.87 Vasa Ski Club
4.  Steve Smigiel Jr 45 30.37 Grand Rapids Nordic Ski Team
5.  Ian Durand 14 30.41 Vasa Ski Club
6.  Evan Scheiern 14 30.56 Vasa Ski Club
7.  Curt Peterson 62 30.81 Vasa Ski Club
8.  Chris Weingart 57 30.88 Straits Striders
9.  Tim Jenema 43 30.94 Vasa Ski Club
10. Glen Goodman 46 32.19 Vasa Ski Club
11. Mike Muha 55 32.43 Team Nordicskiracer
12.  Pete Skellenger 34 32.62 Vasa Ski Club
13.  Nick Amato 15 32.75 Vasa Ski Club
14.  Don Camp 59 33.63 Grand Rapids Nordic Ski Team
15.  Andy Rockwood    53 34.47 Vasa Ski Club
16.  Tom Sutter 64 34.60 Vasa Ski Club
17.  Alex Vanais 21 35.59 Cross Country Ski Headquarters
18.  Steve Smigel Sr 67 36.44 GRNST
19.  Robin Luce 61 36.59 Cross Country Ski Shop / Hanson Hills
20.  Ryan Durand 10 36.94 Vasa Ski Club
21.  Duane Amato 61 37.25 Vasa Ski Club
22.  Frank Rynalski 58 37.31 Cross Country Ski Headquarters
23.  John Kostrzewa 59 38.16 Vasa Ski Club
24.  Jacob Ellis 26 39.69 Vasa Ski Club
25.  Andrew Amato 11 40.75 Vasa Ski Club
26.  Hap Wright 65 41.78 Straits Striders
27.  Dan Butryn 10 46.63 Vasa Ski Club
28.  Griffin Schwalb 10 48.37 Vasa Ski Club
28.  Randy Smith 51 53.41 Vasa Ski Club
1.  Amy Powell 43 33.94 Vasa Ski Club
2.  Catarina Gulledge 24 36.87 Cross Country Ski Headquarters
3.  Heidi Schwab 14 37.32 Vasa Ski Club
4.  Gussie Peterson 62 38.93 Vasa Ski Club

HEAD TO HEAD RACING (3 loops start opposite sides, whomever is leading at 3 laps or if caught before determined winner)


  • Women 0-29: Catarina Gulledge beat Heidi Schwalb
  • Woman 30+: Amy Powell
  • Men 0-9: Daniel Butryn beat Griffin Schwab
  • Men 10-19: David Butryn bean Ian Durand
  • Men 20-29: Alex VAnais beat Jacob Ellis
  • Men 30-39: Eli Brown beat Peter Skellenger
  • Men 40-49: Steve Smiegel Jr beat Scott Howard
  • Men 50-59: Chris Weingartz beat Mike Muha
  • Men 60+: Curt Peterson beat Tom Sutter

OVERALL HEAD TO HEAD (race to the "death" whomever catches the other, must hit them with pole or touch them)

  • Quarter Final Men 1: Scott Howard beat Ian Durand
  • Quarter Final Men 2: Eli Brown beat David Butryn
  • B Final for 3rd Place: David Butryn beat Ian Durand
  • A Final for 1st and 2nd: Eli Brown beat Scott Howard

Coming into the first turn on the Ski Fets XC ski course