Sunday, December 18, 2016

Carbo Load with Pie and Bread

This Saturday was a busy weekend for HURT-nation and folks were traveling in all directions looking for strong starts to the racing season.  Coach Halligan took a tough U18 crew to the first NENSA Eastern Cup in Craftsbury for the individual classic race followed by a pursuit freestyle on Sunday.  Brian Beyerbach led the way on the results sheet with a 67th overall finish for the weekend.  Nino Manzella had a real strong finish right on his heels. Dan Manzella capped off the HURT boys show with a strong performance and a marvelous classic effort on Saturday.  In the women's race it was Eliza Blood who grabbed the top HURT spot with a 73rd place finish in a very deep and dense race field.  Emily Atamanchuk and Briana Fitzgerald got there first taste of Eastern Cup Racing with strong efforts on both days.  Full results for the overall weekend can be found here:

The NYSSRA points series opened with two races: The Osceola Pie race and the North Creek Nordic Fest. The North Creek Nordic Fest was met with mid-winter snowy conditions on Saturday and even though the concurrent high school race was cancelled due to tricky travel HURT made a strong showing on the course in the club race and on the podium.  Here are some shots of the steps.
The women's podium featured NY skiers (now Castleton College skiers) Emily Cromie (2nd) and Megan Greene (1).  4th place Castleton skier is featured in this picture even though the 3rd place was grabbed by fast skiing NYSSRA-regular Gabriella Frittelli.

You have to show up in the junior girls race to get on the podium!

Paul Allison, Doug Diehl (not pictured) and DPK take the steps on the masters podium. The Directress #2 waits patiently to get her dad's podium bell. 

Seamus Tomb (1) Alex Fragomeni (2) and Will Davis (3) in the boys 5K.

Podium finishers were joined by Casey Tomb, Brendan Tomb, Julie West and Alec Davis.  Full Results can be found here: 

Unfortunately, heavy rains drowned out the scheduled Sprint Race slated for Sunday morning but it was still a strong start for an event that looks to grow and bring lots of folks to the great venue at Gore and to the great business in the North Creek Region.  All award winners walked away with homemade dessert breads from Cobble Creek Farm!  Thanks to UHTA (Upper Hudson Trail Alliance) for hosting the event with us!

Not to be outdone, the baked goods kept coming at the Osceola Pie Race and HURT sent a Western delegation to the Tug Hill for the goods.  Ed Luban had a great day on home turf in the deep deep lake effect powder and once again lived by the old standby rule...."You have to show up to beat me!"
visual approximation of skiing in the Pie Race POW.

Friday, December 9, 2016

The Odd Oddsmaker Odds Take 2 - Season Kickoff Edition

Alright....the masses have spoken.  The interweb-nation may have decided that they are collectively over reading the "top 10 buzz-feeds" Buzz Feed", special-edition-fake-news-breaking-conspiracy-stories crafted by middle schoolers in Moldova, and the nonsense spewed from certain politician's tweet machine....but the web has come alive with a resounding "WE WANT MORE" when it comes to NY nordic ski racing reports from the Odd Man himself. is goes.  World Cup racing moves to Davos, and New York racing revs up this weekend with a NYSEF opener (non-series). The following weekend (Dec. 17th) the NYSSRA points series and NENSA Eastern Cup series kick off in North Creek and Craftsbury respectively.  Winter is is here...time to place your money on the ladies

If you ever have a pundit ask you how to heal a nation divided, look no further than HURT-Laydz-nation.  Half the group hails from Shen....and the other half from Queensbury.  Blood rivals. Section 2 powerhouses. Queensbury has, and maintains, the upper hand in this storied history. But don't turn your back on the young upstarts from the suburban jungle of Clifton Park.  With no real hills to train on, the CP gals have turned to the creative training ideas of the French. Mademmoiselle A. Weidmann leads this crew of giggles as they look to close the gap on the Q-squad.  The youth, energy, hunger, and team unity are hallmarks for this half of the Laydz.

Odd-maker Odds:  3:2 that Shen will have the loudest cheering section at any nordic race North of 30 degree Latitude. 
Noah Hoffman fantasy equivalent pick: Stack your team with Sweden.  Nilsson, Ingemarsdotter, Falk, Haag....just like picking Park, Weidmann, Burns, Caron, McGill.  They will have their days. And with well paced money you may just win big. 

You looking for a safe bet? Hit a bad stretch of betting after placing the college savings on Huneck? Here is a good way to get your coin back.  Let it ride on Qbury and Norway.  When Johaug gets banned for a few years...Bjoergen will come back and Weng will beat her.  They are deep, they are strong and they just keep coming.  E. Blood leads this squad once again but on any given week you could be looking for big results from Gengel, Atamanchuk, Falla, Borgos, Oestberg, even the youngest really doesn't matter. You'll be making a winning bet.  Don't give them the championship plaque just yet...we all know that a lot can happen in a season.  But they have talent and history on their side.

Odd-maker Odds:  4:1 that they will leave more glitter on the trail this season than this guy.

Noah Hoffman fantasy equivalent pick: Norway.  Just Norway.

So....You think all the HURT Laydz are from two schools? Soft-spoken but steely-eyed Briana Fitzgerald would like to beg to differ.  She brings top 10 section speed from Scotia and a dedication unmatched.  This is your Parmakoski bet.  You won't be disappointed.  You may not win the big money, but you will have your principled Green Party vote.   

Who can heal a nation divided? What kind of leader can lead with such grace, dignity, power and strength of will?  Who has the god-like character traits of Athena and resolve of Joan of Arc?


Look for total domination in the U8 races.

And her army is growing. 

Be frightened.  Be very frightened.  Gurlz Rool.  Boys Drool.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

The Odd Odds-Maker Odds are BACK - 2016-17 HURT Nordic Fantasy Ski Team Recommendations

Welcome to December!  After a long absence the ODD ODDS-MAKER is back to help you place your bets for the upcoming NYSSRA race season and help finalize your Noah Hoffman fantasy team.  While the World Cup Season is in full swing and headed to Norway, you still have a couple weeks before the NYSSRA season kicks off at North Creek Nordic Festival on December 16th, 17th and 18th.  That gives you plenty of time to search for vacuum-pennies and place bets in Vegas that will be sure winners.  After extensive research of the past off-season training, here are our top sure-fire picks in the men's field.

Brian Halligan:  Has put aside the gun for the coaching whistle and clipboard in recent months.  And then decided to run collegiate xc (and ran really well).  And then switched the blue-an-white of his old Saratoga days for the blue-an-gold of the Qbury coaching staff.  And he is a media mogul.  His performances this year will be a wildcard and unpredictable.

Odd-maker Odds:  5:1 that he will place 2nd at a snow-shoeing event wearing a HURT nordic suit. He will place second because he was trying to get the perfect interview of the winner.
Noah Hoffman fantasy equivalent pick: Petter Northug.  He'll either be first, or 55th.

Brian Beyerbach: HURT's young stud and speedster looks to have a big year on the podium.  From the REG to NEG the QBY kid will be BIG.  Rumor has it he even skied once with Jessie D.  His hair is always appropriately coiffed and he is seen below utilizing his unconventional training method of reduced-hours on skis and 6 hours a day of mineral spring baths. For a nice complexion.

Odd-maker Odds:  3:1 that Jessie D. is actually Jessie Durham, his lab partner in Chem class.
Noah Hoffman fantasy equivalent pick: Frederico Pellegrino.  Young stud that will score in a lot of races.

Mikey Halligan: A skier that strides to the beat of a different drum.  And it is syncopated.  With a sick drop.  MC Mikey-Fresh* looks to bring significant swagger and rhythm to the double tracks this season and is now upgraded from solo-training to team workouts.

Odd-maker Odds:  13:2 that you will hear his beats piped in the speaker system at the Ski Bowl more than once this year.
Noah Hoffman fantasy equivalent pick: Iivo Niskanen.  He is just silky smooth.  So is MCMF*.

playing his new beats on his new iphone 9 mini.

Chris Yarsevich:  HURT Dad Of The Year has gone all in with his new BKYSL training program.  Towing more kids.  Eating more lollipops.  Planting ice cubes and spending A LOT of time snapping ski boots into automatic bindings (think...many squats).  Looking healthy, looking fast and he will be a force in most Masters fields.

Odd-maker Odds:  4:1  He drinks the most post-ski hot chocolate this season
Noah Hoffman fantasy equivalent pick: Ivan Babikov.  Both M2's and both fast classic skiers.

Aaron Huneck and Owen Putman: Shen grads and PG super-duo look to keep the nordic skis sliding this winter.  Putman with his RPI training (consisting of tossing tires at the gym and flexing for the college co-eds) is looking to prove college doesn't mean a drop off in performance.  Huneck, taking a different route, has turned to a life of entrepreneurship and flexible hours to maximize his skiing potential.   

Odd-maker Odds:  1:1  That Huneck sells a pair of skis to buy a cow. For the good milk.  Ends up  purchasing land with the intent of building ski trails and shack, finds out that the trails are great for mountain biking, sells his skis to buy a mountain bike.
Noah Hoffman fantasy equivalent pick: Lari Lehtonen and Martti Jylhae (two WC dudes you've never heard of from Finland, that must be good skiers because they are from Finland)

Alex Fragomeni and Bryce Beyerbach: New kids on the block.  Rivals. some top talent in the U16 ranks.  If they don't try and trip each other with their poles this pair may make real waves this season.

Odd-maker Odds:  12:2 that they finish tied in a section race tied for 5th....down to the 1000th of a second.
Noah Hoffman fantasy equivalent pick: Reese Hanneman and Eric Bjornson.  They appear to be friends, but there is only a world cup spot for one of them.

  Dave Paarlberg-Kvam: Elementary Art teacher and Father-of-one-soon-to-be-father-of-two is desperate for one last competitive run in a great snow year before he drowns in sea of kid boogers and tears (his own).  November has shown that he may get the snow he desires.  Whether or not his performance is up to the challenge remains to be seen.  We do know that as the father of toddler he has become a master of pacing and making smooth transitions.  Look for better performances in longer races.

Here is DPK prepping a pair of skate skis

Odd-maker Odds:  7:2 That he places 7th in a race with a viral infection and throw-up (not his) on his bib.
Noah Hoffman fantasy equivalent pick: Lukas Bauer.  He isn't dead yet.

The Tomb Triplets and the Manzella Bros: We are giving a special shout out for this quintet of HURT juniors and their laundry pile.  It is everywhere. Omnipresent.  At any given NY race venue there is enough left over equipment to outfit all five of them at a moments notice.  This means they are always ready to go. Always. Ready.  When you are always ready to race, you are always a threat.  

Odd-maker Odds:  6:1 That at some point there will be an article of clothing belonging to someone in this group that will be on a bus to Canajoharie.
Noah Hoffman fantasy equivalent pick: Krogh, Sunby, Dyrhaug, Aukland, Roethe....any five Norwegians really.  Norway always rolls with the best team bus.  QBury's Nordie van and the Tomb-mobile are contenders for top HURT Nordie vehicle.  Although we do know this is openly disputed by the other half of the HURT juniors from Sweden (Shen)

We hope you have enjoyed this edition of the Odd-Odd-Makers-Odds.  Stay tuned next week when we bring you our top picks in the Women's Field.

Getting pumped up for the race season?!? Register now for the North Creek Nordic Fest and share the info with your friends.  There will be great skiing and amazing racing all weekend, December 16, 17 and 18th!  See you there

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

November kick off

There was no waiting for the snows of December and January to kick off the 2016-2017 race season for HURT nordic.  With not one, but two major club events this November, the race team has started off the season in a dramatic way.  The HRT newsroom was on-hand to get the scoop...

The NYS Rollerski Champs:  On November 19th, HURT nordic held the first NYS Rollerski Championship in Saratoga State Park.  We caught up with promoter and co-organizer Brian Halligan after the race for the first of many hard-hitting interviews this season.* 

*by "caught up" we mean we approximated what it would have been like to talk with the interviewee.  But whatever...the definition of journalism has become pretty fuzzy in recent weeks

HRT: So Brian, how was the race and what gave HURT the idea to host this event?

BH: Well Chuck, Kingston Nordic used to host a rollerski race for years and we looked to tap into that late November enthusiasm but bring it north a bit.  We loved the major swag from that race and tried to get some of that here as well.  

HRT: We knew that event well.  It was truly a special event.  It must have been hard to duplicate the flat-fast course, full-speed 180 degree turn in the final stretch, the errant soccer balls from nearby fields, and oncoming traffic that Kingston was famous for.  How did you manage to compensate?  

BH: Well, we contacted Greg M. to consult with us and help with our organizing effort.  We can't thank him enough.  Despite our closed roads and pristine pavement we held 2 great races (5K Classic and 10K freestyle) were able to get donations from Toko, Polar, Concept 2, Accelerade, US Ski Poles and Rudy Project so that helped.  The fact that we had Saratoga sulfer spring water to serve helped us really make this event unique.  We hope to carve a real nice pre-Thanksgiving tradition up here.

HRT: We heard your shout-out to the event on your new podcast at, did that help bring out the massive crowds to the event?

BH: Not that I know of, but I do know from my extensive podcast analytics that the number of people in Minnesota who googled airfare rates from Minneapolis to Albany increased by 2300%.  So that is something.

Check out pics below and results here: 

HURT Nordic Thanksgivng NEW YORK: On November 25-27 HURT held their first (hopefully annual) junior nordic ski camp in North Creek, NY at the Gore Mountain Ski Bowl Park.  Aided by some early season cold temps, a little natural snow, and a great snowmaking system, HURT was able to get some solid on-snow time on the 1.7K loop that was blown in.  We "caught up"* with campers during the Thanksgiving potluck on Saturday night to ask how things were going....

*See above

HRT: Hi, Nino and is camp going? Is it as good as expected?  

N: is great to be on snow and great to be here with a bunch of my teammates from school.  The skiing has been pretty nice.  Not as deep as we would like...but it is a good start.  It is sweet to be up training with HURT skiers from other high schools.  It mixes it up a bit from our normal practices. Thanks to Coach Tomb for letting us stay at his place and it is great that all the coaches worked so hard to make camp happen.  It is a blast.  What's burning? Is that the turkey? Or did someone leave a terrarium heat lamp on a rug?

HRT: ummmmm......gotta go.  We hope to see you at the North Creek Nordic Fest in two weeks!  Register now for the weekend races 

Here are some pics from camp:

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The One Post To Bookmark

So, I saw snow this week.  You may have even gone skiing at the 'Ho ..... or on the toll road.

This means it is winter.

Bikes away. Scrape your skis. Change back to your poll baskets. and be prepared to be a little depressed each and every morning until the cold temps stick around and the world is coated in white. 

While you are waiting for the racing season to kick off you can begin to plan your racing schedule.  We here at the HRT newsroom want to help you plan for a great a winter and will help you by highlighting the CAN'T MISS  races of 2016-17.

In keeping with the grand tradition of all the major cable news networks and other non-major-wannabe-upstart-news-media-facebook-thingys.....we are going to present you with a "100%-guaranteed-non-biased-non-partisan-non-corporateinfluenced-non-sexist-non-racist-non-agenda-filled" breakdown of all the Nordic ski races (that HURT is hosting) that you should plan on attending.

Here are our editors Top 5 Race Events for 2016-17 (that HURT is order by date)

1) HURT Nordic NYS Rollerski Championship:  November 19th.  You ever ski the Kingston Rollerski race? If so, it is the same deal....just moved north.  Same great format. Same great prizes.  Same great organizer....thanks, Greg.  You can swing by the Saratoga Winter Expo after the race for some great gear deals.
visual approximation of the awesomeness of ski races that will be at SPAC.

2) North Creek Nordic Festival: December 16th, 17th, 18th.  Welcome to the Gore Mountain Ski Bowl. If you don't know what's been cooking up there....welcome back from your spelunking trip.  Friday night is a Family Night fun ski with ski-cross under the lights, Saturday will be a Classic race, Sunday is a full Freestyle Sprint event.  That's right...sprint. Yes.  Skate Sprint.  Register now.
that's right kitty-cat.....a Sprint race. In NY. 

3) JNQ Weekend: January 7th and 8th.  Two of the biggest days in racing in NY.  Saturday's classic 5K is a Wilkinson Cup Series race, JNQ, high school race weekend and it will be a PARTY!  If you want come enjoy a mass of nordic humanity, great crowds spectating, big race fields, great prizes then Saturday will be your day.  Sunday's freestyle 5K/10K looks to keep that party going.

4) The Mega-Relay: January 14th.  If you never have done this event, you really should try it out. It is like no other. Come to Garnet Hill for a full 6 hour relay event that continues to be one the most hotly contested and highly anticipated events of the NY calendar.  In the women's race....will the WINOS continue their undefeated streak?

5) The HURTathon.  February 12th.  Are you craving a nordic throwback? I mean kicking it OLD-SCHOOL?  How about an individual start 15K classic? Who knows, maybe Juha Mieto and Thomas Wassberg will be there.
yeah....that old school (check his pole that legal?)

For full details about all these events visit the HURT Nordic website. All HURT events can be found on Ski-reg.  We look forward to seeing you throughout the season!

As always....if you haven't signed up for your 2016-17 NYSSRA racing license you should do so now!

If you want to ski for HURT this winter...we'd love to have you join us!  Team info is here:

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

HURT Camp Vermont

As the summer winds down and kids begin to transition from rambunctious trouble makers back to students eager to learn, team HURT jumped on the opportunity to teach about skiing. With a trip to Jericho, Vermont, athletes found out that learning happens everywhere.

The first thing the team learned: how to entertain themselves on long car rides. This is crucial because if everything goes well this winter, we will be spending quite a bit of time in the car. What’s the best thing to pass time in the car? Freestyle rapping, of course.

The first day was full of fear conquering. The trails at Jericho can be intimidating, but the team went in with full of confidence. By the end of the week everyone enjoyed flying around the big sweeping turns. That afternoon the team went cliff jumping at the Bolton Potholes and really learned how to get past the imaginary wall in their brain holding them back.

Maybe the most important thing the team learned during the trip was if you are unhappy with the way something is, do something about it: the team was upset there wasn’t a camp shirt. So we while on our trip to Walmart, the whole team bought matching shirts reading “Camp Vermont” so with a few orange and green sharpies the team made official “HURT Camp Vermont” shirts.

Over the week the team met many high caliber athletes from around the continent and hopefully learned by example. New York athletes such as Tim Burke and Lowell Bailey were great models and Coach Halligan didn’t pass up the opportunity to use these athletes as technique examples.

HURT watches Sochi Olympian Russell Currier

Since the team was so close to Burlington, they decided to check out Church Street after dinner one night. Not 4 minutes into getting to Burlington, HURT’s Mikey Halligan almost got into a rap battle at The North Face. Luckily Mikey’s intimidating beats from his phone were enough to scare the challenger away. But it goes to show you: it pays to freestyle for 2.5 hours on your way to ski camp.

The whole point of the trip, however, was to watch the biathlon Rollerski races and learn from the best. And thanks to cooperative weather, there were great races.

Tim Burke Showing us how it's done

New Yorkers Unite!

HURT had an awesome opportunity to meet arguably the most successful biathlete of all time.
Andrea Henkle-Burke is a multi-time Olympic Champion, World Champion and Overall World Cup Winner.

The Trip ended with one last learning opportunity that doesn’t have much to do with skiing but is an essential life skill. As the team pulled up to the gas station to fill up for the ride home, athlete/team driver Nino Manzella admitted “coach, I have no idea what I’m doing.” Referring to the gas pump.

So as you can see team HURT is getting a jump start on the learning as school is right around the corner. 

Monday, July 25, 2016

The Road

In July, the road to success for a skier can feel a lot like this.

No one wants to be on it.

The weather is hot. Continually pounding the pavement on rollerskis can be a real drag. And there are plenty of warm-weather distractions that can pull focus from skiing fast in March. 

We believe that there is no better time to have HURT camp.  With team sites set on Junior Nationals in Lake Placid and EHSC in Chittenden, VT it was the biathletes that came out to make the 2016 HURT Camp the best one ever.  New HURT development coach and former-world-junior-biathlete-and-original-part-of-the-three-headed-monster*, Brian Halligan, was added to a coaching roster and with him came a guest appearance by friend and Olympian Sean Doherty.  The skiers at camp spent the day with Sean learning about his path to success and some great technique cues that will help on skis.  The week featured bounding, classic OD's, technique drills, on-ski agility, skate OD's, hiking*, trail running**, uphill-time-trial-running, dryland agility, 2.7K freestyle time trial and plenty of swimming, cooking, eating, mini-golfing, ice-creaming***, and rapping****(?!)

*HURT historians will know all about that
*"hiking" may include "getting lost for a bit in the forest"
**"trail running" may include "running back to the correct trail"
*** Thanks to Stewart's Shops for supporting our ice cream intake at camp!
****HURT nordic may be partially responsible for the launch of several will-be-famous rappers who dropped some serious rhymes in our camp's impromptu "rap battle" (Sponsored by Rudy Project sunglasses)

The pictures tell the tale best.  We know it is what the people want....

Sean Doherty spent the day with HURT campers on a gorgeous SPAC day.

Coach Halligan opens camp with thoughts on building the whole athlete.

Buck Summit (finally!!) photo.  Now quick.....back to the vans!  (and don't forget Caron!)

Those that were there, know what happened....

minds were blown.

Skate TT podium

Skate TT podium

Here are the full results:
Brian B - 8:15
Owen P - 8:23
Nino M - 8:48
Dan M - 8:59
Aaron H - 9:07
Seamus - 9:07
Tony - 9:15
Alex - 9:27
Bryce 9:46
Justin 9:57
Mikey - 10:13
Casey - 10:42
Joe - 10:43
James C - 11:26
Brendan - 11:27
Tyler - 11:54
Colby - 11:58
Gabe - 12:23
Harry - 12:36
Paul 13:07
James - 14:13

Anna W - 9:47
Emily G - 10:15
Eliza B - 10:30
Julianne - 10:36
Emily A - 10:42
Laura L - 11:12
Sohyun - 11:24
Maggie B - 11:25
Baleigh - 11:34
Briana - 12:22
Abby - 12:56
Meghana - 13:02
Emily D - 14:12

Coach Callie rocked everyone's Buck Mountain hike.  

It was that kind of week....

The group photo

Bounding and technique drills with Coach PK

West Mountain TT photo.  

Thanks to the kids from Mansfield Nordic who came out to run the TT with us and do our dryland agility course.  Results for both the uphill run and agility course are currently MIA....they will be added to our archive if eventually found...Some of us are still weeding through the bags of dirty laundry....

The HURT truck to LP is filling up fast....we hope you are on board!!

And we will finish off with a movie....Thanks for the edit coach Terko!

I want to thanks everyone who had a hand in helping make our week so great.  Special thanks to our great camp sponsors...Stewart's Shops (who gave us a special grant this year to invite Sean Doherty) and supported our ice cream addiction!  Rudy Project (who donated sun glasses, hats, coupons and stickers), SWIX SPORT (who donated jackets and gave us a great deal on drink belts) and The Sportspage Ski and Patio Shop (who do a great job of helping our local skiers and give ski ties and poles to our camp.) and Price Chopper who generously donates to our massive food budget. 

And thanks to all the coaches who pitched in large and small ways....Bob Underwood, Bill Parks, Paul Allison, Jeff Crotty, Sean Doherty

And the great coaching staff I get to work with all week.....Steve Tomb, Brian Halligan, Callie Douglass and Adam Terko. 

You all certainly make the July road feel like this