The skiing varsity race is the oldest skiing team race in history, dating back to 1922. Since then, they have taken place every year until now (except war years), attracting more and more spectators on the ever-increasing Varsity Trip week. This year’s skiing Varsity proved to be a very successful one, with the early snow falls and cold temperatures making sure the conditions would be ideal for racing.
Both university teams had a few days of training in Tignes before trialling separately to allow women’s and men’s captains El Robson and Matthew Wigmore to finalize team lists. This year’s batch of Cambridge recruits included some very talented skiers, two of them with professional experience, having competed at World Cup level and one of them in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. The races started with two runs of Giant slalom, which saw Olympian Luke Steyn take 1st place, followed by Antoine Magré in 2nd place. The women had a very strong race with Andrea Seaton taking 1st place and Ireland Ski Team Victoria Bell taking 2nd place and also beating all of Oxford’s Blues team. Philippa Bonsall completed the women’s podium with a very strong 3rd place. Maya Gordon and Blythe Burkhart scored some very good runs finishing 4th and 6th respectively. The afternoon saw two runs of slalom, in which Cambridge dominated the other place again. It was Antoine Magré that took win over Luke Steyn by a mere 0.002 of a second. They were followed by Matthew Wigmore in 5th, Adam Rochussen in 8th and Niels Van Fraassen in 9th place. Again, in the women, Victoria Bell and Andrea Seaton ran the show, scoring 1st and 2nd respectively.
The overall results in individuals saw Cambridge podiums in both women and men, with Andrea Seaton taking the lead and Victoria Bell following 0.01 second behind. Blythe Burkhart finished in a strong 5th position. The surprise came from first time racer Izzy Austin, who dominated women second teams and came 9th. In the men’s races, Luke Steyn took the overall lead, followed by Antoine Magré in 2nd, Matthew Wigmore in 5th and Adam Rochussen in 8th. The team results saw Cambridge win in both Men and Women Blues, as well as in Women 2nd ‘s. Racing this year was challenging, taking place on the glacier at 3000m altitude, so massive congratulations to everyone who raced.
Men’s Blues: Won
Women’s Blues: Won
Women’s 2nd: Won
Men’s 2nd: Lost
Men’s 3rd: Lost
Women’s 3rd: Lost