- Have Fun, Get Fit,
- Have Fun, Get Fit, Go Fast!
Introduction: The focus of this Junior team is Nordic skiing, that is to say, have fun on skinny skis, get fit and go fast - in that order. The team is comprised of young individuals from the age of 9 to 18. We practice after school at the Lake Eldora Nordic Trails. The number of times per week you attend practice varies from 2 to 5, depending on age and ability and desire to train.
History: This team was formed in 1983. For many years we were known as LERT (Lake Eldora Racing Team) Nordic. In 1996 we changed our name to Boulder Nordic Junior Racing Team, commonly known to the members as BNJRT. We have had many skiers qualify for Junior Olympics over the years and several went on to place well in those national competitions.
Practices: The season begins in fall with dry land training and moves to the ski trails at Eldora as soon as conditions permit. At 3:15 pm every day, the team meets in a central Boulder location, loads up the coaches and skis and rides to Eldora in a club owned 15-passenger van. Practice finishes around 5:15 and the van gets back to town a little after 6. Skiers practice and race both classic and skate (freestyle) techniques. On non-race weekends, we frequently take the team van up to Grand county and practice at Devilís Thumb or Snow Mountain Ranch. We usually have a fall ski camp over Thanksgiving week, the venue depending heavily on mother nature's ability to deliver snow. This year is was held in Crested Butte. Yes, we had a team and family Thanksgiving dinner, too!
Racing: The race season begins in December and ends in early March. The team competes with other teams from all over the Rocky Mountain District of the US Skiing Association (RMD-Cross Country of the USSA), coming from such places as Aspen, Durango, Grand County, Summit County, Steamboat Springs, etc. The team travels to these races in the team van.† Parents are welcome to travel to the races but are not required to do so. The ultimate goal for serious racers, ages 14 and up, is to compete at the US Junior National X-C Championship (also known as the Junior Olympics or JOs) which are held in early March. The venue for the JOs rotates from region to region each year. This year it is in Anchorage, Alaska and next year it will be on the East Coast somewhere.
The Coaches: We have a new head coach, Eric Pepper. Eric grew up in Old Forge, a small town in upstate New York and began skiing at the age of 3. He graduated cum laude from St. Lawrence University in May, 2001 with a degree in Sport and Leisure Studies and was captain of his ski team. Before joining BNJRT, Eric was an assistant coach last year at Bowdoin College in Maine, working under head coach Marty Hall, a former US and Canadian National Team Coach. Eric has skied at Junior Nationals in Bend, OR, Fairbanks, AK, Rumford, MN and Giants Ridge, MN. The club is fortunate to have three assistant coaches, Petra Masnicova, Emily Muth and Sarah Prudden, all very competent skiers and excellent instructors.
and a couple dozen skiers (please see the Roster). couple of the older skiers are top national level racers. Some of our skiers are also serious athletes in other sports and use cross-country skiing as cross training. Racing is not mandatory. Some skiers choose not to race. The team has a large group of young skiers who are enjoying the sport and improving their skiing at the same time. We are always trying to recruit new members to this younger group.
Equipment: Each skier is expected to own classic and skate skiing equipment. The team hosts a ski swap at the beginning of each season and there is a flow of hand-me-downs as the skiers grow. If new equipment is desired or necessary, the team makes an annual purchase at near-cost from area retailers. New mid-level equipment will cost approximately three hundred dollars for a young skier.
Cost: The team fees for first year skiers under the age of 14 are a special rate of $300 for the season. After the first year, the 3 day a week program (2 weekdays and a weekend day) will cost approximately $500. The 4 day a week program will cost approximately $575 and the 5 day a week program will cost about $675 for the season. Additional costs include equipment (see above), Eldora trail pass (@$75), and any race trip or camp costs.
Operation: We are a parent volunteer powered organization. Only the coaches are paid. To keep membership costs down, all other duties are the responsibility of the parents. The team administrator coordinates the parent volunteer tasks such as recruiting, van responsibilities, race registration, accounting, fund raising, uniforms, equipment, travel arrangements, etc.
BNJRT is fortunate to have several excellent corporate sponsors. Mountain Sports, 821 Pearl Street and Boulder Center of Sports Medicine, 311 Mapleton Ave, strongly support the Boulder Junior racers.
If you wish to join or if you have questions please go to our contact page