Training Day May 2017

Fabrizio Ghislanzoni,  Monica Paluch and Pete Todorov provided the coaching for 44 racers at  SASA’s training day on Sunday 7 May at the Alpine Centre in Southampton.

All the racers started the day with a run and off slope warm up before embarking on a day of on and off slope drills,  timed runs and team head-to-heads.

The pictures should tell the story,  but for old racing hands,  they were very pleased to see the the return of Fabrizio and excited to be getting top notch coaching from Monica and Pete,  some having been coached by one or both of them at ESSKIA and Pamporovo over the winter.

For skiers new to racing,  there was lots of enthusiastic feedback and we hope that you are inspired to come back and try some more racing.  Check out the website for the details of the training sessions and upcoming races!

Well done to Lucas Collyer-Todd and India Dusanjh-Auty as fastest male and female of the day and congratulations to Lucas,  Grant Messinger, Genevieve Cassidy and Sophie Trowbridge for winning the team head-to-head.

Thank you to the volunteers who worked behind the scenes to put the training day together,  to the coaches who, as ever,  provided great feedback to all the racers and thank you to the parents for supporting the event.

We aim to hold another training day in September and we also hope to repeat our secondhand kit sale – watch out for more details on the website.


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Artemis British Interschools Ski Challenge: Pila March 2017

Adam and Laura Harrison-Smith and Daniel Hutchings raced at the Artemis Interschools Race in Pila this week, representing St Mary’s Independent School in Southampton. Dan had already had a packed week of training with ESSKiA, so was excited to be putting what he’d learnt into practice, (but a also little tired)!  Fabrizio Ghislanzoni joined us from Verbier as team coach so the team were able to apply some of the drills that they had learnt on the dry slope to the alpine environment.


There were two days of racing – on the first day, Giant Slalom, with Adam and Dan racing first in the U12 boys race. Laura was racing later in the day and she got the raw deal as hot weather and the usual racing delays meant that she was racing on a very tracked out course.   The field was enormous, with about 200 children competing from Switzerland, France and Italy as well as the UK and standards were very high.   Laura came 12th in the U10 girls, Adam 28th and Dan 63rd, so all three came at least middle of the field.


On the second day, it was the boys turn to race second. Laura skied a blinding first run, showing the importance of planning her race with Fabrizio and skiing that plan, skiing a good line and beating very good skiers who didn’t have the benefit of Fabrizio’s expertise! That performance got her third place on the podium.


By the time the boys came to race, there had already been about 150 runs through the soft course and by the time 80+ U12s had charged down it, it resembled more of a skier cross course than a slalom one. For both boys, getting down in one piece was dominating their thoughts, so we were all very proud to see Adam get 24th and Dan 46th. Again, with Fabrizio to guide them, they were able to plan their races, though it was clear to see that both of them were being bounced around so much that it was very hard to keep their intended lines.


We all had a great time in Pila, which had good race pistes and was very welcoming to a huge number of racers. It was a fantastic opportunity for the skiers to race against some very accomplished skiers and to experience racing in spring snow. We’d like to thank Fabrizio for being a great coach, channelling Laura’s emotions to get her that great result!   We’d also like to thank him for finding us good food and sorting out Mike’s tyre!!!!!


Roll on Pila 2018!

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English Alpine Championships Bormio 2017

Harvey Stanley was one of a number of SASA racers competing at the English Alpine Championships in Bormio over February half term.  Harvey was competing in U12s and got a very respectable 17th out of 33 finishers in the Combined Slalom and GS and 21st out of 34 finishers in the GS.

If any SASA members have any photos from Bormio that they would like to share on the website,  please send them to and I’ll add them to this montage.

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SASA Training Camp Pamporovo February 2017

SASA Skiers Isabella Egerton,  Zac Egerton, Oliver Folloy-Marsh, Adam Harrison-Smith,  Laura Harrison-Smith,  Geno Hounsham and Logan Vickers took part in a race training camp during February half term.  The skiers were coached by Peter Todorov at his ski school, Interski Pamporovo, We were lucky to experience good weather throughout the week, especially for the first few days when the snowfall of our first night consolidated into a firm, grippy training surface.  Black 2, also known as “the wall”, provided a great training piste with a varied gradient and plenty of width to separate trainees from recreational skiers.  The northern aspect and relative high altitude ensured that the conditions on the piste remained good even later in the week when higher temperatures led to softer, wet conditions on lower and sunnier slopes.

Training was largely based on GS turns with a focus on posture and angulation, as well as building confidence to ski fast on steeper ground.  Afternoons were a chance to explore more widely both on piste and through the trees as a way to have fun an also to build wider skiing skills.

Skiers and their parents enjoyed the warm Bulgarian welcome, especially from the team at Interski, and a chance to socialise.  New friendships were formed and all pistes were explored while the children were training.  We look forward to future visits to Pamporovo, and thank Peter for his support.

Tony Smith

If you are interested in race training for February 2018,  please take a look at the News item from January,  where you can register interest for a trip to Italy.  We expect to get more details in late April/early May.

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SASA Winter League 16/17 Race 3

Thank you to all the volunteers for running today’s race.    We had some first time volunteers today,  so we hope that you enjoyed your morning and hope to see you again!

Great racing by over 70 racers today.  You can check out the results on the Winter  Race 3 Race page


February 2018 Alpine Race Camp

SASA are looking to put on a race camp at Piani di Bobbio in the Italian Alps during the 2018 February half term (12-16 February 2018).  This will be an amazing opportunity race train on snow with some amazing coaches in a fabulous location.  This is where Fabrizio Ghislanzoni,  one of our SASA coaches works during the winter season.

At this stage,  we are trying to determine how many people would be interested.  We don’t have detailed costings yet,  but we would expect it to cost about £500 per trainee for Monday to Friday.  This would include board,  lodging and training,  but not travel.

If are interested,  please register your interest.  This won’t commit you to anything,  but it does give us an idea of numbers.

If you have any questions about the race camp,  please contact

Anglo – Scottish Championships, Pila 3 – 5 January 2017

Adam and Laura Harrison-Smith and Harvey Stanley recently attended the Anglo-Scottish Championships,  which were held in Pila for the first time.

They all did fantastically,  competing in slalom,  giant slalom (GS) and a GS/slalom combo race,  bringing home a total of 5 (very chunky!) medals between them!

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