Wasatch Nordic sends five to Junior Nationals
The Wasatch Nordic Ski Academy returned from the third and final Junior National Qualifier race weekend in Bozeman, Montana with many accomplishments and milestones. With temperatures in the mid-40s and 50s last weekend, the course at Lindley Park in downtown Bozeman would prove to be challenging, but the WNSA athletes were up to the task and achieved remarkable success.
Friday’s skate sprint races yielded top results for the WNSA women. In the U16 women’s sprints, Savanna Fassio, Jenae Rasmussen and Lina Farra took third, fourth and fifth, respectively, in the A final. Sarah Morgan won the B final, taking seventh place. Sarah’s final time was actually the third-fastest overall.
In the U18 finals, Maddie Morgan sprinted to a third-place podium finish. In the U16 men’s sprints, Logan Chamberlain took 20th and Aidan Rasmussen, who has raced up from his U14 age division this year, finished 19th overall.
Sunday’s classic mass start race again resulted in top finishes for the WNSA athletes. The U16 men and women started out the day with a 5-kilometer distance. Aidan Rasmussen, wearing bib 19, powered through the pack to finish in sixth place. The "Sea Of Red" dominated in the women’s 5K, with Sarah Morgan finishing second, Savanna Fassio and Jenae Rasmussen taking fourth and fifth and Lina Farra finishing ninth. Finishing out the qualifying races, the U18/20 men and women skied a 10K course. WNSA’s oldest athlete, Maddie Morgan, again skied with powerful, graceful and efficient technique to take second place in the women’s U18/U20 field.
With strong finishes this weekend, five WNSA athletes will be heading to the USSA Junior National Championships to be held in Cable, Wisconsin, March 7-12. Maddie Morgan, Lina Farra, Sarah Morgan, Jenae Rasmussen and Savanna Fassio will join other young athletes from Utah, Idaho and Montana to represent the Intermountain Division at Junior Nationals this year.
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Facing a region opponent early on was not ideal for Park City head coach Micaela Carriel, especially considering her girls had just moved up to 5A Region 8 after spending last season in 4A.