The 2017 Australian Junior Championships just held on the weekend at Falls Creek featured a stack of great racing. The competition was organised by the Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club on behalf of Ski & Snowboard Australia. The winners of the Otto Pinkas Trophies for the Open Junior champions were Darcie Morton from Marlo and Seve de Campo from South Yarra, who each took gold medals for both the Sprint and Distance races. Follow the links below for all the race results, and read on for a summary of the racing in each age category.
In the Sprint events on Saturday there was plenty of close racing, with the fastest qualifiers not always the fastest in the final. In the Open Junior men’s class Finlay Clarke won the time trial, but in the all double-pole A-Final de Campo was too strong, with Clarke taking second ahead of Nic Blackwell. The highest placed MU18 skier was Jarrah Forrer in 4th. Darcie Morton won both the time trial and the A-final, ahead of Maysen Duffy and Emily Champion, with Duffy also the first WU18. In the WU16 and MU16 finals Lulu Miskin won ahead of Lily Murnane and Isabella Moon, and Hugo Hinckfuss won before John Mordes and Will Patterson. Zana Evans was the first in WU14 ahead of ACT duo Lara Essex and Heli Laajoki, while Jayden Spring won the MU14 from Thomas Ingliss and Che Buckley. Rosie Franzke won the WU12, while the MU12 winner was Kai Murnane ahead of Harri Sylvester and Isaac Spring.
The weather was not so kind for Sunday’s distance events, with fog, wind and light rain as various times during the competitions. The Open Junior and U20 winners were Seve de Campo and Darcie Morton once again, well clear of their rivals. Jarrah Forrer was second overall and first MU18, with Tom Hoogenraad third overall. Second and third in the Mu18 went to Declan Burke and Bentley Walker-Broose. Emily Champion was runner-up to Morton in the Open class and first WU18, while Phoebe Cridland snuck in for third overall ahead of Maysen Duffy who was third WU18. The WU16 was the closest race of the day, with just 7 seconds separating the winner Lulu Miskin from runner-up Rosie Fordham and third placed Lily Murnane. Hugo Hinckfuss won again the MU16 category, ahead of Patrick Manning and John Mordes. For WU14 and MU14 Saturday’s sprint podiums were repeated again with 1-2-3 going to Zana Evans, Lara Essex and Heli Laajoki, and Jayden Spring, Thomas Ingliss and Che Buckley. In the MU12 class the podium was reversed with Isaac Spring winning ahead of Harri Sylvester and Kai Murnane, with Rosie Franszke winning the WU12 again.
Australian Interstate Team trophies were reinstated this year after a long break. Victoria and NSW/ACT nominated teams of six athletes (3 boys, 3 girls) in the U20/U18 and U16 categories in the Distance races, with the best two results from each gender counting for overall points. From Sunday’s results NSW/ACT took out the competition in both categories. After engraving the trophies will be on display in the Sverre Kaaten Nordic Shelter at Perisher.