APP Gap 2020 Recap

NENSA just wrapped up a hybrid App Gap Challenge with invitational in-person and all-inclusive virtual components.  This rollerski competition was important for both the competitors and NENSA as we start to implement protocols of how our winter events will be conducted.  Athletes, parents and coaches were energized by and thankful for this iconic event.  Due to the event’s success and the safety compliance of all involved, we look forward to hosting several more rollerski events this fall – stay tuned!  As part of our strategy to continue fostering the competitive and social components of our programs during this health crisis, we were happy to support a strong showing of virtual competitors of all ages who were not able to physically attend – this model will remain in place until we are no longer in a pandemic.

Link to Event Video (edited by Bill Harmeyer, SMS T2)

For the in-person event, we had a total of 68 skiers from seven local teams race the 7.25k Classic App Gap Invitational over the course of 5 days within their team units. A silver lining for small teams racing over the course of a week was that all competitors competed on matched Swenor rollerskis. We had competitors from 5 local junior clubs – Stratton Mountain School (SMS), Green Mountain Vally School (GMVS), Ford Sayre, Craftsbury Nordic, and Mansfield Nordic – in addition to two professional teams – the Craftsbury Green Racing Project (CGRP) and the Stratton Mountain School T2 (SMS T2) team. It was heartening and inspiring to witness the energy, excitement, and care that New England’s top junior athletes, World Cup competitors, Olympians, coaches, and family members alike brought to the event. We are grateful to everyone for carefully following COVID guidelines and helping us put on a fun and safe event.

Olympian and World Cup medalist Sophie Caldwell of SMS T2 captured the win on the open women’s side. She was closely followed by her teammates Katherine Ogden and Alayna Sonnesyn in second and third respectively. In the open men’s race, Ian Torchia, also of SMS T2, took a decisive win over CGRP’s Adam Martin. Craftsbury junior Finn Sweet had an impressive race rounding out the podium in third. For the junior women, Craftsbury’s Nina Seeman had a dominating performance taking the win by almost two minutes over her teammate Quincy Massey-Bierman in second. Hattie Barker of Mansfield Nordic placed third despite battling some wet weather on her way up the Gap. In the junior men’s race, Finn Sweet was followed by Charles Martell of Mansfield Nordic in second and SMS’s Fin Bailey in third.

Full App Gap Invitational Results HERE.

Our Virtual Challenge consisted of three categories: Climb in Time (total vertical in 30mins – 15mins for BKL), Climb over Distance (total vertical over 7.5k – 2k for BKL), and Climb the Whole Time (total vertical in two weeks). We also added a category that meshed all results across the hybrid event by comparing everyone’s average vertical feet per minute.

In the Climb in Time event, Mansfield Nordic’s Tristen Adie took the win climbing 1271 vertical feet. HSC Biathlon’s Marvin Wang placed second overall, and first for the men, ascending a total of 1216 vertical feet. In the Climb over Distance event, EMBK’s Leigh Neideck took the win in the women’s race and the BKL race climbing 185 vertical feet. On the men’s side, NWVE’s Chris Burnham outstripped the rest of the field climbing a total of 3006 vertical feet. Our impressive Climb the Whole Time winner is Peru Nordic’ Peter Minde whole climbed 10,771 vertical feet!

Full App Gap Virtual Challenge results HERE.

Thank you to our primary sponsors for this event: EnjoyWinter, Burkie and Cabot Cheese.

Finn Sweet post race.
Little ‘Q sporting a typical look as many athletes descended the Gap post-race on bikes with ski boots!
Top Places and Prizes:

Open Women
1) Sophie Caldwell – SMS T2 – M1 – Cabot Vintage Cheddar / Burkie Insulated Fuel Belt Case
2) Katherine Ogden – SMS T2 – SR – Burkie Insulated Fuel Belt Case
3) Alayna Sonnesyn – SMS T2 – SR – Burkie Insulated Fuel Belt Case

Open Men
1) Ian Torchia – SMS T2 – SR – Cabot Vintage Cheddar / Burkie Insulated Fuel Belt Case
2) Adam Martin – CGRP – SR – Burkie Insulated Fuel Belt Case
3) Finn Sweet – Craftsbury – U20 – Burkie Insulated Fuel Belt Case

Nina Seemann


Junior Women
1) Nina Seemann – Craftsbury – U20 – Anti-Freeze SuperPuff with NENSA logo
2) Quincy Massey-Bierman – Craftsbury – U18 – “2020 Happened” App Gap T
3) Hattie Barker – Mansfield Nordic – U18 – “2020 Happened” App Gap T

Junior Men
1) Finn Sweet – Craftsbury – U20 – Anti-Freeze SuperPuff with NENSA logo
2) Charles Martell – Mansfield Nordic – U20 – “2020 Happened” App Gap T
3) Fin Bailey – SMS – U16 – “2020 Happened” App Gap T

Upcoming Rollerski Races to come – please note The Maine Event is already on the calendar for October, 25th.

The Fleet awaits you!