Tahoe’s Schoonmaker named to U.S. cross-country championship team

Local skier JC Schoonmaker was among the athletes announced to the U.S. Cross Country Ski Team that will compete at this year’s FIS Cross Country World Championships.
Justin Scacco,

Local skier JC Schoonmaker was among the athletes announced to the U.S. Cross Country Ski Team that will compete at this year’s FIS Cross Country World Championships.

Schoonmaker and 13 other athletes will head to Oberstdorf, Germany, for the championships, which are scheduled to run Feb. 22 through March 7.

More athletes will be nominated to the team, according to Program Director Chris Grover.

“Many of our best domestic performances this season have come from some of our younger athletes, and because of this, we want to evaluate performances at the upcoming Junior and U23 World Championships (Feb. 8-14 in Vuokatti, Finland) and name additional athletes to this World Championships Team on February 15,” said Grover in Tuesday’s announcement from U.S. Ski & Snowboard.

Additional athlete considerations will also be evaluated following this weekend’s World Cup event in Ulricehamn, Sweden, as well as the World Cup stop in Nove Mesto, Czech Republic, Feb. 20-21. Grover anticipates the total team size will be closer to 18 athletes.

Schoonmaker, 20, has had a career season thus far, claiming 14th-place and 18th-place finishes at World Cup events in December. Recently, the Auburn Ski Club alum posted an 18th-place finish at Sunday’s World Cup event in Falun, Switzerland.

Far West Nordic continues virtual racing

The annual Old Skool Classic at the Tahoe Cross-Country Ski Area came to a close on Jan. 25, closing a four-day window as part of last week’s virtual race.

This year’s event attracted 72 competitors, marking an increase of 50 racers from a year ago, while also raising more than $1,000 for the Tahoe Cross-Country Ski Education Association.

Racers had a four-day window to complete the course at Tahoe Cross-Country Ski Area, and once the dust settled, David Sinclair finished with the top time out of the men’s division, completing the 10-kilometer course in 31 minutes, 39 seconds. Brandon Herhusky was second overall and first in the U25 age group, finishing with a time of 34:45. Mathew Nistler was next with a time of 34:57, followed by Wyatt Fereday (35:03) in fourth and Ambrose Tuscano (38:40) in fifth.

On the women’s side, Lizzie Larkins posted the top time, reaching the finish line in 33:08. Isabel Caldwell was second overall and first place out of the senior division with a time of 39:44. Karen Seward (1:02:59) was third, followed by Lily Murnane (1:04:35), and Kili Lehmkuhl (1:04:44).

Race results went to Far West Nordic’s season-long Kudos Cup. Sinclair leads the men’s division with 149 points, followed by Peter Hanson in second with 139 points and Herhusky in third with 128 points.

Caldwell leads the women’s division with 116 points. Seward is second with 101 points and Larkins sits in third place with 60 points.

The next virtual race got underway yesterday at Royal Gorge as the first of four days of the Van Norden Loppet got underway. For registration information, results, and schedule, visit

Far West Freestyle opener delayed

The Far West Freestyle season was set to get underway today with the first of two days of moguls competition, but is now being postponed until later this month.

“Due to COVID-related circumstances beyond our control and out of an abundance of caution to protect the health and safety of this group, we will not be able to hold the Squaw mogul event this weekend” said Sebastien Cayolle, league chair, in a race announcement. “This is an extremely unfortunate development as I know many of us made extraordinary arrangements to be here mid-week, but safety comes first.”

The competition is being rescheduled for Feb. 20-21.

For more information,

Justin Scacco is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. Contact him at or 530-550-2643.

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