2022 Nationals Freestyle Distance Race Recap

Photos by John McClogan
APU Nordic Ski Center had stellar performances today at the U.S. Cross Country National Championships in Soldier Hollow, Utah. Today was day #2 of the races followed Monday’s freestyle sprints where APU Nordic’s Becca Rorabaugh finished as a silver medalist in the women’s sprints.
Today, APU Nordic Ski Center skiers earned back-to-back U.S. National Championship Titles and Podium finishes with a full podium sweep in the Men’s 30km and 1st and 2nd place medals in the Women’s 20km races.
For the Men’s 30Km race, APU Nordic had a powerful six (6) men placing in the top 10 with more finishing close behind! APU Nordic Ski Center Scott Patterson won the men’s 30km freestyle mass start and had a strong performance leading the pack for the 2nd half of the race with APU Nordic Ski Center’s David Norris coming in shortly after in 2nd place and APU Nordic Ski Center’ Hunter Wonders in 3rd place.
After overcoming injury, Scott Patterson remarked on the race: “Today was an awesome day for me and the APU men’s team. A combination of great skis and strong performances made it a day to remember with lots of excitement during the race. Personally, today was a big validation of my fitness and potential moving forward. I started the season off a bit behind where I wanted following a mountain biking crash in August where I broke my wrist. I finally committed surgery at the end of October when it became clear that my wrist wasn’t healing. Only in the last week have I really felt that my wrist is up for a race. These setbacks left me a little on the back foot for fitness and wrist durability, but I was able to dial in my form while spending the holidays with my parents in Bozeman, MT and to come in ready for today. I’m looking forward to more races at U.S. Nationals and whatever comes after that.” said Patterson after the race.
In the Women’s 20km freestyle mass start, Rosie Brennan dominated the race skiing an average 60+ second lead faster than the race followers finishing 1st place earning another U.S. National Title. APU Nordic skier Rosie Frankowski finished a well-fought 2nd place with former 2018 Olympic Teammate and Craftsbury skier, Caitlin Patterson, finishing a close 3rd.  Rosie Frankowski commented on her race: “It was SO fun to be out there racing at Soho with Rosie B (Brennan) back in the APU crew. After initially trying for 500m to ski with Rosie, I settled into the chase pack and eventually had a showdown with Caitlin Patterson for most of the race. I knew her strengths were on the downhills so I just tried to push the pace on every uphill as much as I could, and I was lucky that on the last two laps I managed to take some of the oomph out of her legs. That proved important for the last downhill and sprint finish, where I narrowly held her off. The best part of the day was the amazing cheering and support from our APU coaches, teammates and supporters out on the course. Hearing Tyler Kornfield scream at me to keep the pedal down on the last lap might have been one of the reasons I pulled off 2nd. And having Rosie (Brennan) at the finish line to congratulate me and celebrate the day was a highlight I will remember for a long time. The icing on top was the men sweeping the podium, and all in all, APU having a great day!”
Many of our skiers who raced today are racing to earn a spot on the 2022 Winter Olympic Team. U.S. Nationals is a key qualifier for the Winter Olympics.
“It was so great to race at home and have my family and friends cheering me on the whole way! With COVID, even my Mom has been unable to watch me race for years so it felt really special to be able to race with a hometown crowd before heading to Beijing. I was feeling quite inspired after watching some great performances by the APU men this morning and that gave me faith that our fitness was high and we could grind away. I wanted to do my best to simulate World Cup racing so I wanted to start hard and then reassess based on what others in the field did and then ultimately keep grinding to get a long hard effort in at altitude which we haven’t had the opportunity to do on the World Cup this year. The course we raced played into my strengths with a long gradual climb right out of the start so I felt I had to use that every lap to keep building on my strengths and do my best to work on relaxed, powerful skiing the rest of the lap. I am really happy I had the opportunity to come home and race a long race! I think I may have lost my voice screaming Frankie (Rosie Frankowski) into the finish as well. It was really awesome to see her dig so deep today and to have APU put in such strong performances all around today.” said Rosie Brennan
A full list of race results can be found here: http://www.summittiming.net/races/race_results_for_us_champs_2022.php
APU Nordic Ski Center Race Results
APU Nordic Ski Center Race Results
Men’s 30km Freestyle Mass Start
Scott Patterson 1st
David Norris 2nd
Hunter Wonders 3rd
Zanden McMullen 6th
Garrett Butts 8th
Thomas O’Harra 10th
Michael Earnhart 12th
Ari Endestad 24th
Forrest Mahlen 31st
Karl Danielson 46th
Chip Schoff 63rd
Junior Men 10km Freestyle Mass Start
Bjorn Halvorsen 39th
Liam Chisolm 81st
Senior Women’s 20km Freestyle Mass Start
Rosie Brennan 1st
Rosie Frankowski 2nd
Becca Rorabaugh 12th
Anna Darnell 15th
Annie Gonzales 44th
Junior Women 7.5km Freestyle Mass Start
Marit Flora 18th
Natalie Hood 44th