Sunday, November 5, 2017

2017 Fall CSU Fall Classic Rollerski Race

Up the first hill

We had a smaller turnout this year than in recent years, even though the weather for rollerskiing was pretty good with light winds, temps about 50F and mostly overcast skies but no rain, snow or other stuff falling.  Harvard brought a big contingent as usual, making it a fun race with several CSU Jr. grads including Clara Cousins, Izzy Cole, Will Rhatigan and Jacob Meyerson.

It's a bit hard to report on the race from the back of the pack, but suffice it to say, everyone shot off the line and headed up the hill way ahead of me.  There was a nice lead pack with Alex Burt doing the 1 lapper skiing with Mack, James (who did 2 laps) and Will, while behind them things got stretched out a bit.  Leading out on the women's side were Tegan and Hannah.  Further back, Robert and I were chasing Lily and at one point I made the pass but got re-passed at the bottom of the long downhill so it was back to chasing.  About this point Robert told me he was struggling and eased off a bit.  Back up front, Alex came across the line leading the pack and finishing first in the Jr. race closely followed by Mack and James, but Mack gapped James somewhere on lap 2 to take home the victory with James 17 sec. back.  I passed Kate Weinberg on the back half of the course with her speed reducer flopping around, so I hope that wasn't have a negative impact on her speed.  Kate hung in to take first for Jr. women.  At some point Andy came by on lap two.  His pole tip had failed on lap one and he'd pulled off to get his skate poles at the car before continuing on his way.  I was still chasing Lily, passed on the long downhill and then got re-passed again and that was it as she floated up the hills gaining time on me.  Up front Tegan must have put the hammer down on Hannah and came in first in the women's race with Hannah 20 sec. back.  In the Jr. race Henry and Linden were going at it with Henry coming out 1 sec. ahead at the finish.

So, it was a good day of racing.  I'd like to thank everyone who helped out by timing and watching the corners and keeping the traffic at bay.  Thanks to Chris City for the great photoset.

Alex crosses the finish line

Henry edges Linden for 2nd place

CSUJr racers

Jamie giving out awards (pies and cider donuts!)


Tegan takes control

Izzy leading out

Robert chasing Kate chasing Lily


Add caption

Linden and Henry


Clara leading out


James airborne


Men’s Results

Name Club 1st Lap Finish Time
Mack Fitzpatrick Harvard
James Kitch CSU
Will Rhatigan Harvard
Chris O’Brien Harvard
Haakon Sigurslid Harvard
Connor Green Harvard
Jacob Meyerson Harvard
Andy Milne CSU

Jamie Doucett CSU
Robert Faltus CSU

Women’s Results

Tegan Thorley Harvard
Hannah Hardenberg Harvard
Isabel Cole Harvard
Lily Koffman Harvard
Clara Cousins Harvard

Junior Women

Kate Weinberg CSU

Francesca Kitch CSU


Junior Men

Alex Burt CSU

Henry Johnstone CSU

Linden Niedeck CSU

Ben Buchheim CSU


Wednesday, October 25, 2017

CSU Fall Classic Rollerski Race Nov. 5

Photos courtesy of Chris City

The 28th annual CSU Fall Classic Rollerski race takes place Sunday Nov. 5 in N. Andover.  The race is classic, 2 laps for seniors and masters, 1 lap for juniors (you can do 2 if you want).  Race starts at 9:30 am.  Beware daylight savings!

Questions or to volunteer, email me at:

The 2017 CSU Fall Classic Roller-Ski Race
Hosted by the Cambridge Sports Union
Proceeds to Support FOLJMS (The Friends of Leo J Martin Skiing)
Date: Sunday, November 5, 2017
Start: 9:30am
Entry Fee: $12 
Course: 2 lap course, approx. 15km (7.5 for Juniors) over rolling suburban streets
Technique: Classic
Location: Playground on Milk St. and Johnson St, North Andover, Mass.

Mail Entries: Jamie Doucett Info:    Call at 978-475-6323
26 Lincoln Street Email:
Andover, MA.  01810

 Name: Sex:        M               F
  Address: ` Age on Race Day      
 Ski Type: 

In consideration of your acceptance of this entry, I, intending to be legally bound, hereby, for myself, for my heirs, executors and administrators waive and release any and all sponsors and their representatives, CSU, NENSA, and the Town of North Andover from any and all rights and claims for damages I may have arising out of any injuries and illnesses suffered by me in this event.  I attest and verify that I am physically fit and have sufficiently trained for the completion of this event.  I have read the entry information provided and certify my compliance by my signature below.  I also understand entry fees that I pay are non-refundable.

 Signature: Parent/Guardian

 (if under 18 years of age)

Monday, October 23, 2017

Picture-Perfect Autumn Weather Greets CSU-X Athletes in 2017 Boston Mayor's Cup XC Race

In picture-perfect autumn weather, CSU-X runners Linden, Ben, and Alex (led by coaches Pat Giersch and Eric Vandendries) all made strong showings on Sunday, October 22, at the 2017 Boston Mayor's Cup Franklin Park 5K XC race.

Ben led the pack for the CSU-X racers, pushing past Linden in the final 100 meters with a strong sprint and final push across the finish line. Ben and Linden both finished with sub-20-minute times (32nd and 33rd overall, respectively), with Alex following in under 22 minutes after cramping up on the third lap.

Leigh Niedeck also competed in the Youth 10 and Under 1.1 mile race and finished a strong 17th overall.

Congratulations to all who participated and thanks again to Pat and Eric for their yeoman coaching efforts.

More photos of the runners below:

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Alternate racing on Sunday

CSU-X was truly divided up last weekend - the third chunk of the team ran in the Brookline Day 5k, close to home. Ben, Milo, Hannah Parker, Noah Baumann, and alumni dad Erik Vandendries all ran. Erik led the pack for CSU with a blistering sub-19, followed closely by Ben, first in his age category and 8th overall! Milo had a solid run, in 17th. Owen ran the kids' 1k, and was 14th, while Hannah was 5th in her age category. Nice going all!
Owen showing off his cheering whistle (I bet it sounded better in real life)

Ben post-race

Monday, September 25, 2017

Holdenwood Trail Run/Climb to the Castle

CSU-X divided forces last weekend, with half at the NYSEF Climb to the Castle, and the other half took on the Holdenwood Trail Run. It was hot and sunny, and times were pretty slow considering the weather and the hills.

Thanks to Shiela N for taking all the photos - great to have a race photographer on hand!

Also racing, but not in the photos, were Jamie Doucett, Jody Newton, Sue LaChance, and Chris Doyle, with Jody Sue and Chris all running the 10k!

Linden demonstrating the proper water-over-the-head technique for hot days

Alex in the woods. This course is so pretty!

Nice mid-race shot! 

Alex and Madeline coming up to 2 miles

Barry showing great forward lean

Linden approaching the finish. Is he stopping his watch early?!?

Pat cruising to the finish

Madeline was the 3rd-place woman! 

Francesca recovered well from a trip and a fall in the beginning (with the entire pack running into her), and then some bee stings. Ouch! Nobody said it was easy to build resilience :)

Kevin racing one of the Ayer-Shirley kids to the line

Climb to the Castle
We had a hearty crew head to Lake Placid for an uphill rollerski race this weekend. Rob, Kathy, Maile, James, Oliver, Jacob, Henry, Alex, Kate, and Laura all made it to the finish line, which is no small feat considering that the finish line is on top of Mt. Whiteface. Rob will hopefully post more photos, but here are the results: 

Oliver and James led out pack, with Oliver having a fantastic race to finish first U18 and 4th overall. 11 seconds would have gotten him on the podium! James was 2nd U18 and 5th overall, in a solid showing. Henry was 6th U18, Jacob was 8th U20, and Alex was 10th U18. Rob was the first M7, and 5th master overall. He is probably very proud of beating Kathy, even though it was only by a few seconds. 

Kathy was the 6th woman, and third master. Laura was close behind, as the first U18, and Kate was third U18. 

Well done to all of you!

Monday, September 11, 2017

Wachusett Uphill Run

Gorgeous weather for an uphill run workout yesterday. We all did a thorough warmup, which just happened to get us to the top of the mountain, then reconvened at the bottom to get started. Super thanks to our timers, Chris Daly, Shiela Niedeck, and Tod Niedeck (and possibly more that I missed).

This is not the time of year to be setting big PRs, as we're all coming off some heavy weeks of training, and with school just starting, a lot of the skiers haven't been sleeping an ideal amount. It's worth recognizing that when you don't run as fast as you want to, there are a lot of factors at stake, and they all need to be considered! So, think of this as an ode to all of you who left your summer homework for the last minute, and then had to borrow energy out of the recovery funds.

And whether or not you were faster than May, this workout is an excellent way to make you faster in the winter. Congrats to everyone who got to the top of that hill with a good honest effort! (and those U18s, you lucky ducks, got to do it twice :)

James  Kitch  14:26
Jacob  Jampel  14:41
Linden  Niedeck 15:53
Ben  Buchheit 15:59
Lucas  Daly  17:40
Dante  Vetrone 17:52
Heiner  Baumann 18:06
Madeline Kitch         18:12
Barry  Kitch  18:16
Laura  Appleby 18:54
Alex  Jospe  19:09
Kevin  Telfer  19:13
Francesca Kitch  19:43
Eva  Baumann 19:48
Robert  Watt  20:18
Jane Anna Chapman 21:11
Katy  Graddy  21:55
Milo  Song-Weiss 22:12
Brian  Telfer  22:21
Hannah  Parker  22:51
Kathie  Watt  25:50

Monday, August 28, 2017

August Adventure Weekend Mt. Mansfield Vt

The girls gone wild weekend.  5 CSU Juniors trekked to Vt. for a final summer surgical training spike mixed with some new turf to traverse.  The following photos detail some of the high points.

It's Saturday so time for an OD skate up and down Pleasant Valley.  The juniors liked it last year so we tried to beat their experience with perfect weather.  Awesome ski albeit I imagine the Mansfield racers were all incented to ski too far.

The skiers finished by skiing to this terrifically refreshing swimming hole outside of Jefferson where the team quickly decided it was time for lunch,
Post lunch cards were followed by a trip to the Lake Waterbury Beach where the CSU Flotilla in 4 boats took to the mountain lake.  Two boats paddled part way around this very long lake while the girls explored a few coves and took in the views.  A big cookout followed to close out Sat.

The girls stuck together opting for the early long hike up the Mansfield ridge, to the top of the race course in time to catch Rob and the first runners up the mountain.
Noah Hoffman shows why he is on the US Team by beating all the mountain runners, flatland runners and other skiers by over a minute.  

Rob getting ready to hammer the end of the course.  Little does he know the CSU cheering squad is about to force him into the final kick with .2K to go.
Moriah helped drive the team in her van through the mountains so the girls gave her a final boost near the summit.  The CSU runners all finished well way up on the standings given 384 finishers.  Chris was 21st Jim 56, Rob Oh so close 4th in his age group and 67 overall while Moriah finish 145th.

Onward to peak bagging where the group went across the Mansfield ridge from the Forehead across the Chin to the Adams apple.
Dining after the hike was at the famed Bingham falls, which is unique swimming hole consisting of a dozen pool many of which are carved into the stone by the stream in deep holes that are surrounded by shear faces that are up to about 50 feet.   We made the girls watch a French Canadian crew test out their proposed jump while the downed a 2 course formal serving while sitting on a big rock.  Kate took it upon herself to start senior year early and led the way into the abyss.  (Note to parents - the big cliffs were off limits, but I was assured there are no rocks on the low perches.  Still a thrill.)

Phoebe shows off her gymnastic form.

Shea shows off her classic technique technique with great kick and long stride.
Rose is unimpressed by the younger team and shows them while a huge leap is fine, but hey can you walk on water?  Seems she either has an amazing ability to take advantage of surface tension or she really must have some special ability. 
Eva says, but wait I can fly.

A last swim into the falls, some watermelon back on the deck and the long return drive by Kate for another successful CSU adventure.  To think we still like to ski more than summer training.