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Class C finals 2009- small schools SCREWED!!
Date: Jul 11, 2009 7:26:17 PM PDT
Author: PowMow

Twice in 4 years MPA sends class C to the COUNTY!! And this time to Fort Kent, an area too small for an adequate modern GS to even be set!! If we need to ask NH areas for bids so be it- the kids deserve adequate races!!!


Ski Fan
Class C finals 2009- small schools SCREWED!!
Date: Jul 13, 2009 10:16:09 AM PDT
Author: Ski Fan

It is very disappointing to see MHSS settle on Lonesome Pines for such an important event. Our alpine athletes deserve better. Those making this decision need to reconsider.
Originally Posted by PowMow:
Twice in 4 years MPA sends class C to the COUNTY!! And this time to Fort Kent, an area too small for an adequate modern GS to even be set!! If we need to ask NH areas for bids so be it- the kids deserve adequate races!!!


Class C finals 2009- small schools SCREWED!!
Date: Jul 27, 2009 12:55:42 PM PDT
Author: Chandy

Are there more schools closer to the "County"? I have not been involved long enough, but I have heard stories of Class A going to Fort Kent. From what they say, it is a small hill, and it takes the team about 10-12 hours to get there (from the ME/ NH Border). From what I understand, areas submit bids and ask for the event, and it is not often profatable for the areas. It does seem as though Fort Kent is out of most teams way. Please forgive my ignorance on class C geography if this is not true. I like everything about Mt Abrams, Sunday River for sure, and the on slope portion of Black Mountain... those are all within 25 miles of each other... Why turn left and drive another 10 hours? That said, I have been to the meetings and I know that there is well established logic, or at least the best of intentions when these decisions are made.


Class C finals
Date: Jul 28, 2009 7:26:22 AM PDT
Author: onemore

I don't believe that Class C schools are screwed!! If you live
in a northern school the cost for those schools to travel is
much more had for a southern maine school to come north.
Southern schools hotel rooms will not be $100.00 plus. I
have heard that the last time schools went to Fort kent it
was a great experience at the State meet. Fort kent is
known for making things happen in a big way. 10th
mountain is a World Class venue and Lonesome Pines will
has been the home of numerous State champion teams.


Class C finals
Date: Jul 28, 2009 11:34:33 AM PDT
Author: Chandy

Is there any place that is in the middle? What about Sugar Loaf? I can agree that the costs to stay in and around Sunday River/ Black/ Mt Abrams are very expensive (ridiculous). I can feel your pain. All I know about this venue is what I have read, but like I indicated before, there is always a lot of discussion and thought that goes into the decisions. Feedback from coaches is welcomed and a host of other variables are put into the mix too. To be fair, 2 times in 4 years is 50% of the time... so for every year "small schools get screwed" there is equal time that they do not. That seems pretty fair to the northern and southern schools. Of course I would not trade our class A races at Mt. Abrams/ Black/ Sunday River for a 10 hour ride, even if we were going to the most world class resort in America.


responses to Chandy, onemore
Date: Aug 2, 2009 5:18:33 AM PDT
Author: PowMow

Onemore, you're completely missing the point. To fairly allocate the event MPA set a rotation for Northern finals that was based upon a ratio of the number of County teams compared with the total number of teams in each class. That math set the rotation at 5 YEARS (see MPA's web site). If you truly think Lonesome Pines has the terrain for an appropriate GS for this, the most important race of the year, you've either not been there or you don't have an understanding of modern alpine racing. Further, it's the short notice that makes this situation so distasteful. School budgets and fundraising plans need more time than just this few months.

Clarifying the process, the MPA ski committee solicits bids from Maine areas to host the races. This year, and for the foreseeable future Sunday River is not interested. They made that position clear LAST YEAR so if MPA was paying attention, they would have known they had a problem. Simply soliciting bids in this case was at best apathetic on the part of MPA. Unfortunately, it's the southern class C racers that pay for said apathy. Looking ahead, what is the plan next year? Does class B go north when THEY are not scheduled for another 6 years? Rest assured if we were talking about basketball finals there would be painful consideration to ALL details. Why do ski racers in 2 of the 3 classes in Maine not deserve the same?
Last modified by PowMow on Aug 2 2009 5:47AM


responses to Chandy, onemore
Date: Aug 21, 2009 12:44:08 PM PDT
Author: Chandy

For what it is worth, this was just released....
TO: MPA Ski Schools
FROM: MPA Ski Committee
DATE: August 19, 2009
SUBJECT: Ski Championships
This past year completed the last year of a fi ve year contract with numerous ski
venues from across the state. Requests for bids for the next fi ve year period were sent to all ski venues in the state and were accepted through the spring. At the last Ski Committee meeting the bids were reviewed and awarded. The following venues submitted offi cial bids to host MPA Ski Championship Races:
Mt. Abram/Black Mountain Locke Mills/Rumford Saddleback Rangeley
Big Rock/The Heritage Center Mars Hill/Presque Isle Lonesome Pine Fort Kent

A number of venues that had hosted previously chose not to submit bids, and the
bids that were received were interested in hosting only one class (A, B, or C) only.
After lengthy discussion, the Ski Committee developed the following three year
Class A Mt. Abram/Black Mountain
Class B Saddleback
Class C Lonesome Pine

Class A Big Rock/The Heritage Center
Class B Mt. Abram/Black Mountain
Class C Saddleback

Class A Saddleback
Class B Big Rock or Lonesome Pine
Class C Mt. Abram/Black Mountain

All bids that were submitted met the specifications that were outlined and were all
submitted by the date that they were due.
wddata\ski\2009\bid memo


Ski Fan
responses to Chandy, onemore
Date: Sep 1, 2009 9:52:54 AM PDT
Author: Ski Fan

This most recent development only demonstrates the extreme poor judgement of the ski committee and their unwillingness to do a little extra work to ensure all Maine ski atheletes have appropriate venues for states. It is also quite clear that school and family budgets have not been given any consideration. Why would class A teams ever need to travel to the county? A trip to the county means most teams must travel over 4 hours, with the shortest travel time being 2.5 hours. This, compared to current venues that involve travel times of 90 min for most Class A teams and no more that 3 hours for those travelling the furthest. Perhaps the members of the "ski committee" need to become reacquainted with the geography of the state. It might also serve our alpine atheletes to show them what a mountain looks like. Clearly this has escaped them! Shame on you, members of the ski committee.


responses to Chandy, onemore
Date: Sep 3, 2009 10:01:28 AM PDT
Author: Chandy

While I agree that it does not make sense for schools from the very bottom of Maine to travel 6 hours to the very top of Maine to race schools that are no further than 2.5 hours away, I sympathies with the ski committee. The problem is, the ski committee does not say, Hey, Sunday River, we are going to have Finals at your place, OK? They have to ask which mountains are willing to accommodate us, and they have to choose from those who respond. Sunday River, Sugarloaf, even Shawnee Peak- they don't need us. The State Finals is like a swarm of locusts taking over a ski area, and its always during vacation week. The areas do not make any money on ticket sales, and parents and boosters all bring food, so that they do not have to pay inflated prices for the resort food. There is very little profit to be made (comparatively) and we disrupt the season pass holders and paying public... On the hill, they have to shut down a whole trail for 2 days, and provide saftey services, and logistical support for the race as well. It is more of a pain for the mountain than it is a benefit.

I have been to enough meetings to know that the ski committee does the very best that they can. They do not want to make decisions that will upset people. They try their best to be as fair as they can be. If it does not turn out right for everyone, so be it. You can never make everyone happy all the time. It is a group of folks doing the best they can, its not a character flaw of the individuals... It seems as though the ski committee had a hand of cards that would either upset everyone or only most of the people... and they did the best they cold. All that said- I don't want to drive to The County!
Last modified by Chandy on Sep 3 2009 10:04AM


Sorry, it's not good enough
Date: Sep 4, 2009 5:00:45 PM PDT
Author: PowMow

"Not making everyone happy" is a profound understatement. Despite the impending "swarm of locusts" as you describe a finals race in your post, a group of parents and coaches from class C, upon hearing this disturbing news, was able to put together a workable schedule for the class C races in less than a week; at 2 willing alpine areas no less.

Most bid specs have a clause stating a right to reject any and all bids. In 2004 MPA created a travel schedule that fairly apportioned races geographically according to school participation. If the bid process did not result in races consistent with that fair schedule then it was very simply, inappropriate to award bids.

It's also inapproriate and inadequate to post this known schedule only on this website and many months after the bids were awarded. They say bad news travels fastest. This is clearly only true after it is known. Why did coaches not receive at least an e-mail after the awarding of the bids so at least some fundraising plans could have begun? I submit it was because they knew they had produced an inadequate result.

Can anyone reading this even imagine in their craziest dreams that if the only football, baseball, basketball or hockey facility that bid on a HS championship was in Fort Kent that the idea would even be entertained that it be held there? Why is ski racing less important?

I don't doubt the earnestness of the committee but I do not only question their decision, I ask them to reopen this issue. Their charge to "do their best" and the clear availability of venues consistent with the travel schedule simply demands it.

Last modified by PowMow on Sep 4 2009 5:18PM

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