English Alpine Ski Championships kick off with double victories for Darcie Mead and Ollie Davies

The English Alpine Ski Championships began yesterday as nearly 500 racers from a range of nations descended on the slopes of Bormio, Italy. For the English skiers it was all about their one chance of the season to battle it out for the honour of becoming an English Champion. ... 

Sunday saw the action begin with the FIS Night Slalom on the Stelvio piste and U14/U16 GS races on the Adler piste. This was followed by the FIS GS on Stelvio and U10/U12 GS races on Adler today.

In Sunday's FIS Slalom there was victory for English and British team racer Darcie Mead (18, Kingston Upon Thames) who just nudged out Bethany Widdup (19, Pendle). Yasmin Cooper (16, Chichester) and Anna Henderson (16, Dunstable) came joint third overall and joint first in the U18 category, in what was a closely contested race between the English racers.

For the men, Ollie Davies (17, Guildford) put in an exceptional performance to become English Slalom Champion. He beat his nearest English competitor Robert Trebilcock (21, Hemel) by over 5 seconds with Ollie Krahelski (19, London) coming in third and first in his age group - U18.

In the fog-affected U16 boy's GS race, Matthew Heginbotham from Oldham took the English title with Oliver Weeks (13, Leamington Spa) taking the U14 boy's GS title. For the girls, Alicija Krahelski (15, London) took the Under 16 girl's GS honours, with Arabella Ng crowned the U14 girl's GS English Champion.

Monday saw blue sunny skies grace both the Stelvio and Adler pistes for the FIS GS and the U10/U12 GS. There was some fantastic racing on both courses with firmer conditions early morning producing some fast skiing.

In the FIS GS race, Darcie Mead was crowned English GS Champion, sealing her second victory against her English team mates following her Slalom win on Sunday night. She just missed out on taking the overall win as she was beaten by Scottish skier and British teammate, Cara Brown who put in two impressive runs. Second of the English racers was Jess Anderson with Beth Widdup  taking third spot. 

Darcie said of her win: “I felt like I had a really smooth first run, I wasn't rushing or panicking and in the second run I changed my tactics, I tried to attack, but maybe a bit too much. Cara was only a 10th ahead of me after the first run so I think I was just trying to go for it, but the risk didn't really pay off. I am still happy with the result though. I was 14th seed, so I didn't expect to be in the top 3, so I'm really happy.”

For the men, Ollie Davies also took his second English Champion title in two days, securing victory in the FIS GS. Second place for the English racers went to Jordan Fellows (17, Walsall) who skied well to push Ollie Krahelski into third by 0.3 of a second.

Ollie Davies said: “It was a tough course, but good snow today and I am really pleased with the result. I have been making some changes to my skiing and I knew I was skiing fast, but it was just bringing it all together.”

In the U12 GS race, Tommy Dade from Ambition Racing took the U12 English boys title, with Sophie Foster from Surrey becoming English Champion in the girl's race. Team Evolution's Alex Ogden took the U10 boy's title, with Molly Butler from Hemel being crowned the girl's U10 English Champion.

The Championships continue tomorrow with the FIS Super G and BARSC FIS Super G on the Stelvio piste and the U14/U16 Slalom on the Stella Alpina. The fun continues into the evening with the floodlit Team Parallel Slalom where 32 teams will battle it out to take the Team title. 

Snowsport England would like to thank the continued sponsorship and support of the event by Energiapura, Vital Marketing, Rossignol, Endsleigh, SkiBartlett, Ski Bitz, SkiRacing Supplies, Racer Ready and Fine Designs.

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