There are numerous NCAA skiers currently competing at the Junior and U-23 World Championships in Otepea, Estonia, Jan. 26-31 as members of the United States team.
The highlight of the NCAA contingent to date has been Erik Bjornsen’s 10th place finish of 98 skiers in the 1.4k sprint qualifying race in the Junior competition. The University of Alaska Anchorage freshman was the only member of the four-person US contingent that advanced to the finals of the sprint competition where he finished 14th overall.
Vermont freshman Scott Patterson had the highest place U.S. finish in the Junior 10k freestyle as he placed 28th of the 103 skiers in the event. Denver sophomore Andrew Dougherty finished 46th, Bjornsen placed 57th and Northern Michigan’s George Cartwright was 76th.
In the women’s Junior 5k freestyle, Colorado sophomore Joanne Reid was the top NCAA competitor, finishing 36th of 86 skiers. Dartmouth freshman Isabel Caldwell was the only other collegiate skier in the race, and she finished in 70th.
In the women’s U-23 10k freestyle, Vermont’s Caitlin Patterson was the only NCAA competitor. The junior from Anchorage placed 26th of 42 competitors.
In the men’s U-23 15k freestyle competition, Alaska Fairbanks junior Lex Treinen finished in 35th place, while fellow Nanook teammate David Norris came in 46th less than a minute behind Treinen.
The Junior championships consist of anyone that did not turn 20 years of age prior to Dec. 31, 2010, while those competing in the U-23 championships must not have turned 23 prior to Dec. 31, 2010.