The Scottish Schools’ skiing season gets under way this month with the qualifying events for the Autumn Dual Slalom Ski Race Series.
But there is going to be an exciting new opportunity for Scotland’s school skiers this season. Gordon Skiers, based in Huntly, provides high quality performance opportunities and coach James Paxton is planning to take a group to an inter-school event in Italy in April.
“I work a lot with Iain Ramsay-Clapham through the Scottish Schools’ Snowpsorts Association and help run events all over the country,” said Paxton.
“The event in Italy is two days’ racing and takes a lot of effort and organisation. But I am keen to put together a Scottish team and do the coaching. All our club members at Gordon are school kids and I am also going to target potential competitors through social media.”
Gordon Skiers train on dry mats at Alford on Sundays from now through until December and then snow training runs from January to Easter at the Lecht or Glenshee.
Paxton runs the family IT shop and business, but skiing is his real passion.
He started skiing as a six-year-old in Hemel Hempstead and then his family moved north when he was 13.
“But that season there wasn’t too much snow so I ended up going down the instruction route,” he continued.
Paxton is already working with schools in the area, including Banchory Academy and Albyn School in Aberdeen. The first test for some of the Gordon racers will be the first of the Dual Slalom Autumn Series at Alford a week on Saturday.
There are another nine qualifying events, ending with one at Glenmore Lodge on 6 October.
The finals take place at Snowfactor in Glasgow with the Primary event on Wednesday, 26 October and the Secondary finals the following day.