Giancarlo Esposito rounds a gate at the 22nd annual Deer Valley Celebrity Skifest on Saturday afternoon. Christopher Reeves/The Park Record
Giancarlo Esposito rounds a gate at the 22nd annual Deer Valley Celebrity Skifest on Saturday afternoon. Christopher Reeves/The Park Record

While Ted Ligety and Bode Miller were a state away, claiming gold and silver medals at the Audi Birds of Prey event in Beaver Creek, Colo., there was another highly-contested ski race happening at Deer Valley.

For the 22nd year in a row, Deer Valley kicked off its winter season with the Celebrity Skifest. Led by Olympians Steve and Phil Mahre, Heidi Voelker and Tommy Moe, four teams of celebrities were assembled for the fun race.

Ultimately, the team led by Steve Mahre would claim victory in the finals, taking down Heidi Voelker's team.

Celebs Mark Feuerstein, Bobby Farrelly, Amy Acker, Chad Lowe and Captain Keith Colburn were happy to be standing atop the podium, but everyone said it was just a great way to have some fun while supporting the Waterkeeper Alliance, the event's beneficiary.

"It's a great cause trying to clean up waterways throughout the world," Mahre said. "It benefits everybody, not just certain people."

He added that trying to train the celebrities in the span of one morning was an interesting experience.

"Some of them, it's amazing how open they are to learning," he said. "Some people are more athletic and some are more willing to try new things."

But, when it comes down to the competition, Mahre said he gave two pieces of advice have fun and ski how you are comfortable skiing.

"That's the number one thing have fun," he said. "Especially in today's weather. It was a little tougher for some of the guys the visibility was a little tough."

Mahre, who estimates he's made it to 16 of Deer Valley's 22 Celebrity Skifests, said the team he got this year was one of the best he's had.

"They have a lot of fun, and I ended up with a good team," he said. "It's not me, it's the guys behind me. I might be able to get one win, but I need a bunch more to carry me."

Mahre did indeed pick up a big win against Voelker in the finals, but he attributed that to course selection more than anything.

"Fortunately, I was on the red course," he said. "For us pros, it was probably about five-tenths of a second quicker than the blue. So, if you ran on red, you were going to win. So thank God I got red in the finals against Heidi."

With the Celebrity Skifest wrapped up, Deer Valley is open for the winter season. The resort had 14 of 21 lifts open as of Tuesday morning.