Truckee’s Hansford claims Wrangler Cup wins

Truckee alpine racer Amber Hansford speeds down the course at Palisades Tahoe on her way to a first-place finish.
Courtesy Harry Lefrak /

PALISADES TAHOE, Calif. — Truckee alpine racer Amber Hansford took a break from competing on the high school level to race in this week’s Wrangler Cup at Palisades Tahoe.

Hansford, a senior at Truckee High School, opened Tuesday’s giant slalom competition by racing to a dominant win, outpacing the field by more than two seconds behind the two fastest time of the day. She’d finish Tuesday’s giant slalom with a combined time of 2:09.88

Truckee’s Tatum Akers was also competing and finished second overall and first in the U18 division with a combined time of 2:12.49. Sugar Bowl’s Sophia Sosnkowski, representing Poland, also raced and finished in eighth place with a combined time of 2:15.58. Teammate Aspen McAuley took ninth with a combined time of 2:16.42.

Competition shifted to downhill on Wednesday at Palisades Tahoe, and again Hansford put together the day’s two fastest runs to finish in first place with a combined time of 2:09.34.

McAuley was the only other representative from Far West Skiing to finish downhill in the top 10, posting a total time of 2:13.79 to take eighth place.

Racing shifted to Sugar Bowl Mountain Resort on Thursday and Friday for a pair of slalom rounds.

While the women competed earlier in the week at Palisades Tahoe, the men were at Sugar Bowl for a pair of slalom races.

Sugar Bowl’s Charlie Baker defended home turf during Tuesday’s slalom event, eking out a win by 0.05 seconds. Baker had the fastest first run of the day and finished the race with a combined time of 1:22.32. North Tahoe skier and member of Team Palisades Tahoe, Tyler Rantz, was third with a total time of 1:22.65. Sugar Bowl’s Adam Brown took 10th with a total time of 1:25.27.

Skiers returned to Sugar Bowl on Wednesday for another round of slalom racing, and again no one could best Sugar Bowl’s Baker, who had the second fastest time on both runs to win the race by nearly two seconds with a combined time of 1:25.88.

North Tahoe’s Prince Ilano was the only other local skier to finish in the top 10, posting a total time of 1:29.81 to take seventh place.

The men’s Wrangler Cup shifted to Palisades Tahoe on Thursday and Friday for giant slalom (results not available at time of print).

Truckee’s Amber Hansford races past a gate at Palisades Tahoe during the Wrangler Cup.
Courtesy Harry Lefrak /

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