CBMST wrapping up season

10 athletes headed to IFSA championships in April

By Than Acuff

The past month has been frantic to say the least for the Crested Butte Mountain Sports Team (CBMST) athletes bringing a close to the main competition season, the most robust season in the history of the CBMST.

“We got to 30 events this year and had 370 individual starts, which is up from 240 starts last year,” says CBMST head freeride coach Mark Robbins. “We had huge growth at the u12 level as they doubled the amount of starts from last year.”

Several athletes rounded out their season with two 3* National events in the past two weeks with 10 total punching their tickets to the big show, some on their final day of competition.

The CBMST skiers and snowboarders started the final push at a 3* event in Snowbird March 1-3. A storm combined with high winds left organizers no choice but to cut the event from its usual two-day format down to a one day, one run format for each athlete.

“All of our kids did a great job dealing with the new format,” says Robbins.

The u15 athletes opened the day and continued to impress as Brooks Miller posted another podium with a second-place finish to officially secure his spot at the big show in April.

“Our top u15 kids have been posting podiums all season,” says Robbins.

The winds started ramping up and visibility decreased forcing organizers to go with a split judge set up with one judge mid-slope.

While CBMST snowboarder Teagan Turner saw success finishing second place and punching her ticket to the championships, the older skiers struggled in their competition.

Meanwhile, CBMST athletes and coaches were crisscrossing the state weekly for regional competitions seeing success on several stops.

“We had multiple athletes and coaches on the road posting results everywhere,” says Robbins.

Seven CBMST skiers then stepped back into the National 3* scene at Kirkwood March 15-17 with one making the cut for the championships on his final run.

The Kirkwood event was back to normal with two days of skiing starting with a qualifier day and the strategy was straightforward for the athletes.

“The main thing was what I always tell them,” says CBMST coach Abby Philbrick. “Choose features and lines they think they can ski the best and showcase their skiing.”

Five of the seven made it through the qualifier day and were presented with one of the top venues on the freeride competition circuit known as the Cirque.

“It’s a huge venue, twice as long as most venues these athletes see,” says Philbrick. “There’s so many options to choose from for the athletes to display their abilities.”

For the finals the plan was simple.

“I just told them enjoy it and go for it,” says Philbrick. “Most of them were just really excited for the opportunity to ski it.”

The five that made it through made the most of their one run on the Cirque but no one more than Liam Hadley. Hadley came into the finals in 21st place and laid down a run that pushed him all the way to ninth place. Not only that, but his result meant he would be headed to the championships as well.

“He maybe held back a little bit on the qualifier day but in the finals, he just went for it,” says Philbrick. “It was a huge move for him. Everyone that made it to the finals took the opportunity to go for it.”

“It often comes down to the wire and it’s so fun when kids can get it done,” adds Robbins.

Between the 3* competitions and the litany of 2* regionals events, 10 CBMST athletes are headed to the 2024 IFSA National Championships April 7-14 in Breckenridge. Miller, Tor Jennison, Niko Hudson, Sol Hausdoerfer and Tucker Pritchett will all be competing in the u15 skier comp and Sullivan Reese and Sidra Anderson will compete in the u15 snowboard comp. Atalaya Hausdoerfer and Liam Hadley are in the u19 age skier bracket and Teagan Turner will be in the u19 snowboarder bracket. Shiloh Stephenson also made the cut as a u15 snowboarder but will not be competing.

“Consistency of scores gets you there and all that qualified had great results throughout the season,” says Robbins.

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