NorAm Finals End, Combinations Awarded


Photo: American skiing and snowboarding

NorAm Finals Slalom

The men and women persevered in soft snow conditions to complete the last NorAms slalom of the year. US Ski Team athletes Zoe Zimmerman and Ben Ritchie were the day’s slalom winners while Ava Sunshine Jemison and Liam Wallace were crowned overall NorAm champions.

Zimmerman had the fastest race of the morning for the women, edging Canadian Sarah Bennett by 0.18 seconds. Those who started early in the peloton took advantage of the mild conditions to set the best times. Run two produced the same story, those who started first and second had the fastest times on the race. Although she fell back to eighth in the second moto, Zimmerman retained her first overall position. Behind, in second place, the Canadian Amelia Smart followed by the Norwegian Kristiane Bekkestad.

On the men’s side, it was an almost identical story with US Ski Team members Ben Ritchie and Cooper Puckett setting the fastest times in the first run. His American teammate Bridger Gile managed to close the gap in his first run, moving up five positions for third place. Ritchie extended his lead over Puckett by 0.82 seconds for a final time of 1:31.02. Puckett grabbed his third NorAm podium of the season with silver.

“I’m so happy,” Puckett said. “It’s been a really up and down slalom season, I was quick in training and in the race sections, but it didn’t go well. To have that happen in both runs today with guys I really look up to was amazing and I’m really, really happy to be in the top five overall in the slalom for next season.

Overall NorAm Winners

Although Sunshine fell to seventh in Monday’s slalom and Wallace did not finish his race, the two were named NorAm Skiers of the Year, marking a World Cup start in all disciplines for next season. .

This is Sunshine’s first year as a member of the United States Ski Team, she has finished on the NorAm podium five times in four disciplines. She also won the Alpine Combined title, as well as third place in GS. Sunshine edged Canadian Stefanie Fleckenstein with 950 points, just 42 points ahead. Sunshine’s teammate Allie Resnick finished third overall and won the GS title the day before.

“I’m super happy to end the NorAm season with a third place overall,” Resnick shared. “I’m so happy for Stef and Ava. They showed speed in all disciplines this year from start to finish. Winning an overall ranking is no small feat, congratulations to Ava on the start of the World Cup in every event next year.

Alpine Canada’s Wallace had a dominant season himself to secure the overall standings, finishing with 1,098 points ahead of teammate Riley Seger with 870. Wallace finished in the top three standings in four of the five disciplines and clinched seven podiums throughout the season.

“First of all, congratulations to Liam for an incredible season and for winning his first overall,” said Seger. “I was very lucky to be surrounded by an incredible team of athletes and staff this year and we all pushed each other. I would also like to thank the MSU Bobcats for being such a great group and having my back, it feels good to end the season on a high.

After a fourth-place finish in Monday’s NorAm slalom final, Sam Mulligan passed teammate Kyle Alexander by one point to complete the overall winners in third.

Once the NorAms are over, athletes will stay at Sugarloaf for three days of US National Championship racing to close out the season.




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