Sunday, March 7, 2004

Chris Price emerged as the top male racer and Lisa Draper as the top woman in the Mid-Atlantic Ski Championship racing series this winter, the 27th season for the Washington Ski International event.

The seven-week series consisted of 10 races at six regional resorts. Two weekends (four races) were canceled because of weather. On any given weekend, 60 to 80 skiers and snowboarders competed in the races, said WSI director Sam Mantis.

“It was our best year yet,” said Mantis founder of the series and its biggest cheerleader. “We had a high turnout every week, and the quality and ability of the top racers just keeps going up.”

Price, 31, of Annapolis, competed in all 10 races. He had three firsts and four seconds in his class. Against all men he had three seconds.

“He was consistent, showed up at every race and picked up points. That’s how he won,” said Mantis.

Draper, 42, of Dunkirk, Md., won five of the six races in her class and five of six against all women. She was first overall (men and women) once.

Two brothers created a stir in the series. Andy Caron, 16, won his class with nine firsts and a second and had a first and two seconds against all racers. Tristan, 13, nearly replicated his brother in his class with nine firsts and one third. His best overall finish was eighth.

Racers and their clubs or teams will be recognized at the Mid-Atlantic Ski Hall of Fame banquet, 5:30 p.m., April 18 at the Tysons Corner Holiday Inn. Tickets for the banquet, which is open to anyone interested in ski racing, are available from Mantis, 301/946-0190.

Final individual and team standings for the Washington Ski International, 2004 Mid-Atlantic Ski Racing Championship series:

Men: 1. Chris Price, 142 points; 2. Ted Miksinski, 135; 3. Travis Feeser, 111; 4. Lance Bravard, 104; 5. Jim Schally, 86; 6. Bob Juskus, 83; 7. Alex Mankevich, 83; 8. Steve Burford, 67; 9. Larry Smith, 65; 10. Andy Nard, 59.

Women: 1. Lisa Draper, 119; 2. Laura Smith, 116; 3. Rhonda Smallwood, 116; 4. Jennifer Caron, 106; 5. Mary Hollein, 97; 6. Nancy Liebrecht, 90; 7. Nicole Vavrecka, 69; 8. Laura Gabanski, 67; 9. Colleen Pierre, 63; 10. Linda Bain, 58.

Clubs/teams: 1. Columbia, 93.5; 2. BS Bombers, 82.5; 3. Fagowees, 81; 4. Zardos-Renegades, 69; 5. Ski Club of Washington D.C., 56.5; 6. Baltimore, 42; 7. Flying Dutchmen, 26; 8. Mon Valley, 17.5; 9. Wisp, 2, Pittsburgh, 2.

Ski for charity at Snowshoe — The Snowshoe 24, a 24-hour ski race, is scheduled at the Silver Creek area of Snowshoe Resort starting at noon March 20. Winners will be determined by laps over a predetermined course.

Proceeds go to the Snowshoe Foundation, a non-profit group that assists nearby communities. Two-, four- and six-person teams will compete, and an overall individual champion will be determined. The top individual will win $1,500, while $1,000 goes to first-place teams. In all, $10,000 will be awarded to finishers in various categories. Entry fee is $95 a racer and includes lift access, meals, parties and an awards reception. Contact: 877/441-4386;

Wisp sets closing date — Wisp at Deep Creek Mountain Resort, McHenry, Md., plans to operate until March28. Late-season rates are in effect with $20 lift tickets and rentals. Through the end of the season, Wisp is offering a $36 learn-to-ski package that includes a lift ticket, class lesson, and rental.

Wisp also rents snowshoes and snowbikes. Snowshoeing is permitted across a snow-covered golf course for a $16 rental fee. A four-hour guided snowbike session that includes instruction, snowbike rental and lift ticket for the tour is $25. Contact: 301-387-4911;

Snowy Luau at Timberline — The biggest festival of the year, Snowy Luau, comes to Timberline Four Seasons Resort, Davis, W.Va., March 20-21. Live Hawaiian entertainment is featured all weekend with bands and native dancers on the stage at Timberline Lodge.

Saturday is Big Air Competition, a freestyle event in Timberline’s terrain park for snowboarders and skiers. Sunday is Ultra Cross Competition in the terrain park, also open to all. Contact: 800-766-9464, snow phone 304-866-4828;

• Snow Sports appears Sundays in The Washington Times during the winter.

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