Event attracts talent
TWO of the country’s biggest on-snow events were held at Mt Hotham at the end of July and early August with International Ski Federation (FIS) ski and snowboard events taking place at the resort.
Both the ski and snowboard races attracted a number of high profile and up and coming talent from the country and around the world.
The FIS Racing Festival was the first event to hit the Hotham slopes and included Giant Slalom (GS), Slalom (SL), and Ski Cross (SX) races over four days from July 30 to August 2.
In the men’s GS, Ross Peraudo claimed top honours ahead of Austrian Richard Leitgeb and Oliver Thompson.
The women’s race was won by Kathryn Parker, while Sophie Wood was second and Matilda Coates third.
In the men’s SL the top two positions went to international athletes with Leitgeb first and USA’s Robby Kelley second while Peraudo rounded out the podium.
Wood improved on her GS second to claim gold in the women’s GL, Parker was second and Kendra Etherton grabbed third.
The men’s SX was won by Anton Grimus who finishing ahead of William Payne and Douglas Crawford.
In the women’s SX Hotham’s own Katya Crema took her fifth national title, Parker capped off a great week with another second while Lilly Speiser finished in third.
On the August 5-6 it was the boarders’ turn to carve up the mountain with Hotham hosting the first two FIS Snowboard Cross Continental Cup events of 2015.
Over 70 competitors entered across the two days which were dominated by Australian Winter Olympians Alex ‘Chumpy’ Pullin and Belle Brockhoff for the second straight year.
On the first day of competition race officials were forced to push the races back due to high winds and low visibility.
But when the racing got underway it was Pullin who cruised to victory in in the men’s final, winning by four seconds ahead of Matthew Thomas, USA’s Senna Leith and Aussie Adam Dickson.
In the women’s final the Aussie competitors dominated with Brockhoff first across the line followed by Georgia Baff, Mollie Fernandez and Chloe McIvor.
On day two Pullin fought off a challenge from Cameron Bolton while Adam Bolton was third and Dickson again fourth.
Brockhoff again held off Baff in the second final, while Emily Boyce finished third ahead of Brooke Brewer of the USA.
CARVING IT UP: Alex ‘Chumpy’ Pullin (front) took out both races of the recent FIS Snowboard Cross Continental Cup at Mt Hotham.