Wednesday, November 30, 2016

2017 Scottish Winter Training & Race Support

Booking for the Gordon Skiers winter snow season is now live.

Snow training will commence January 8th, the first Sunday after schools return in January 2017 and will run until Sunday 26th March 2017.

Booking for Sunday training and season weekend race support should be booked through the form below. Reservations will close and payment must be made no later than December 19th. This is to ensure that we can assign the right coaches to the right groups for each event or training session.

The program for the season will see us continue our popular format of Sunday training at The Lecht and where we have our base. Race support will be provided for the Scottish series of races as usual. Drop In Saturday sessions are under consideration and will be slotted into the season dependant upon interest and snow conditions. (Please mark your interest - no payment required - on the booking form).

Click SNOW TRAINING FORM 2017 to reserve your place today

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Sunday November 27th Alford Sunday and Bairns and Lassies

A great weekend for the club with skiing on Saturday for some at Hillend followed by the normal Alford Training on Sunday.

Saturday saw 11 athletes competing in the Bairns and Lassies race held at Hillend, Edinburgh. The day started off with a 7.30am bib collection (little bit antisocial) followed by course inspection and then 2 runs down a GS from the top. U12 racers needed 1 run to count and U14 and U16 needed combined times. We had 9 U12 racers and 2 U16 girls competing, this is a great number of U12 racers and hopefully this number will continue to grow. Race Support was led by acting head coach James and assisted by Calum S, there was no stoppage between runs so was a pretty busy morning with 120 racers for two runs. All the Gordon Skiers skied exceptionally well especially those who were skiing Hillend for the first time, Hillend is not the most forgiving of slopes and can be a little bit daunting when stood in the start gate of a 450m dry slope. Beth W put in two solid runs with a 0.3second improvement on her 2nd run to give her 1st place in U16 Female whilst two of our youngest members , and Hillend first-timers, were on the podium in the U8 boys with Glenn L taking 3rd and Finn R coming away with 1st. Well done to all racers especially those that podiumed and hopefully this is the start of excellent race entries and results for the season to come.

Sunday was a slightly busier day than normal at Alford with Blues and Datawax doing ski prep demos and giving advice whilst Cafe2U were serving hot drinks and bacon/sausage rolls which seemed to be going down well with parents and children alike - some even choosing to ski and eat on the go!


Due to most coaches being available today I decided to take the day off and do some observation , a task Gary wanted to do earlier in season but coach numbers didn’t allow, to see how coaching was progressing and see the general atmosphere in the club. The coaching seems to be going down well with all the kids coming off smiling and the improvements in their skiing are clear and the feedback from parents is positive and rewarding. 

RD1 and RD2 were on timed runs this morning on a slightly more challenging course than they have had previously with a hard left legged turn after a combination. Despite the course being tough both groups were giving it their best shot and the times were improving throughout the session. PS1 and PS2 were continuing the work and progression they have been on during the season and included some synchro skiing and Jamie has PS1 doing some circus tricks (balancing poles) whilst skiing down. RD3 and RD4 again were continuing to build their skills and week on week the level is improving whilst the coaches challenges the skiers to new drills.

The Head to Head races were exciting as usual with some very tight races and those that fell bounced back to continue racing. Today was exceptional in the fact that some teams had to have 2 skiers on the course to try compete against another team but I think the prize for ‘bending the rules’ goes to Mark R team who managed to have 3 skiers on the course at once in the hope to chase down the winning team today. The honours of winning team go to the acting head coach and his fellow team mates.

Name Time
Kieran Lennox 8.65
Daisy Cowie 8.92
Logan Duncan 9.14
Torin Liversidge 9.62
Archie Duncan 9.68
Murdo Reid 9.73
Harvey Sleigh 9.93
Ruaridh Rogerson 10.11
Jack Sleigh 10.19
Kizzy Scott 10.31
Jacob Ipsen 10.46
Finlay Cooper 10.54
Alex Hay 11.34
Findlay Cormack 11.34
Dylan Driver 12.27

Friday, November 25, 2016

Sunday 27th Training

It’s that time of the week again for us to prepare for Sunday morning training at Alford. We are on week 7 of training out of 9 so are back to the beginning on the rotation again. Please find below this week’s training schedule. We have RD1 and RD2 on timed runs this week with RD3/4 and PS1/2 on the head to heads at the end.

This week’s coaches are;

Jamie- PS1
Alex – PS2
John –RD1
Andrew- RD2
Callum & Kathleen – RD3
Stuart & Mark – RD4

James will be present and will be popping between groups helping out where needed this weekend.

Reminder – we have Blues and Datawax coming along on Sunday morning to do a Ski Prep/Maintenance demo and they will be able to answer any questions on ski prep that you have so please go and see them. We also have Cafe2U serving hot drinks and bacon/sausage rolls during the morning.

Christmas Lunch Deadline- we need to know numbers by middle of next week at the latest so if you haven’t already signed up then please do so on Sunday morning.

Well done to all club members that took part in the SSSA races this week, it was delight to be involved in and see Gordon Skiers competing. I saw some excellent skiing and it was great evidence of all the hard work that has gone in so far this season. Hope you are all refreshed and ready for Sunday . Good luck to all those competing tomorrow at the Bairns and Lassies in Edinburgh and I will see you all bright and breezy tomorrow morning for a 7.30am bib collection.

See everyone on Sunday.

James (Acting Head Coach)

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Roundup from Primary and Secondary SSSA SnowCross

Newmachar School Primary winners 
We are delighted to have had all our Gordon Skiers do so well either in the overall standings and with personal bests but also skiing for their schools, alongside their classmates and with smiles on their faces. 

The number of racers from all across Scotland, many of whom use SnowFactor regularly meant that the North East was always going to be up against it away from home. The results (individual and team) speak for themselves and once again show what can be achieved by a short piece of dry mat slope tied together with solid race coaching.

Congratulations and mentions to ALL RACERS (and their parents) from around the Shire who took the time out to head down and race inside the freezer. For once it was debatable whether inside SnowFactor was warmer than outside!!! 

Robert Gordons and St Ninians managed to share the Secondary prize on equal points.
A note to everyone that the SSSA Alpine series is also accepting entries for schools to take place on February 1st and 2nd at multiple venues across Scotland. Gordon Skiers will be helping support these great races at our home base of The Lecht. We'd love to see you there whether seasoned racer or novice. Get in touch with us and come and have a go!

Gordon Skiers results from the two days of racing

Name School Position Comments
William Lennox Newmachar 1 83 finishers
Kieran Lennox Newmachar 2
Paul Marshall Newmachar 5
Daisy Cowie Finzean 5 Leading NE skier out of 77 finishers
Finlay Carry Robert Gordons 13 83 finishers
Findlay Cormack Finzean 35 First Indoor SkiCross race
Name School Position Comments
Rachel Brown Banchory Academy 1 48 finishers
Ollie Baillie Robert Gordons 1 52 finishers
Ruby Still Robert Gordons 2 Family member
Beth Whatford Westhill Academy 5 Leading NE skier
Hannah Morrison Robert Gordons 14 48 finishers
Kathleen Ray Banchory Academy 16
Ellie Green Robert Gordons 22
Hamish Alexander Banchory Academy 16 52 finishers
Andrew Howell Albyn 22 Ski racing since Feb 2016 out of 52 finishers. 1st yr secondary

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Sunday November 20th Arctic Alford Sunday

Gordon Skiers are a great bunch. Real enthusiasts on every level.

Saturday we had the Introduction to Mountain Safety day with 19 attendees, 16 of them Gordon’s Members. We covered everything from snow tension on convex slopes to practical exercises with transceivers. The weather was perfect - minus 6 with blue skies and frozen ground.

Kettle and a Pick Axe - Arctic Alford Course Setting
Then today, we had Alford powder with a mat that was frozen solid. Skis were gripping and the skiing was so hot the ice was being turned to steam.

Today’s timed runs were PS1 and PS2. The course was tricky with a big right foot turn 2 gates from the finish beam. It was challenging and a few skiers weren’t too happy with the course setter. Great gains were made and the competition was fierce. Andrew and Jamie were fighting for bragging rights and Andrew managed to pull it out of the bag on his last run, taking the lead from Jamie by the tiniest of margins.

Ellie Green wasn’t feeling it for the first few runs, but once she realised her skiing was more than capable of making the turns she nailed the course and her times came tumbling down. What a smile Ellie.

Race Development 3 and 4 were doing some great work shadow skiing and looking to take parallel skiing to the next level.

Race Development 1 and 2 were pushing themselves hard with testing drills, before testing their skills in the head to heads.

As for the fitness sessions. Great to see the skiers committing to the sessions and even managing to encourage some of the parents to join in. I’m sure I even saw smiles today after fitness - of course that could just have been the cold getting to my brain!

The head to head races were very close today, but Kathleen’s team took the honours. Annabel wasn’t happy with the clean win as she wanted a final. Well done Annabel (and Kathleen) in a great team performance.

Let’s hope the cold weather continues and brings in plenty of snow.

Gary W

Today’s Timed Runs

Winning Team Leader Kathleen and Kieran bowing to the stronger team

Skier Time
Andrew S 6.81
Jamie R 6.84
Rachel B 7.03
Neil S 7.29
Beth W 7.3
Gary W 7.6
Jack M 7.79
William L 7.93
Nathan S 8.21
Ellie G 8.35
Graeme C 8.45
Paul M 8.61
Ben W 8.72
Rachel M 8.78
Sophie R 8.84
Andrew H 8.98
Finlay C 9.16
Alex DNF

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Training Sunday 20th November

Evening All,

Week 6 of training means we’re at the end of the second cycle of training. The Schedule is as per below

Group B (Perf 1&2)
Group A (Dev 1&2)
Group C (Dev 3&4)
Timed Runs
Ski Training
Ski Training
Ski Training
Head to Head
Head to Head

Coaches this week will be

1. James RD1
2. Alex PS1
3. Kathleen RD3
4. Jamie PS2
5. Andrew RD2
6. Mark RD3
7. Callum RD4
8. Gary PS1

It’s going to be cold tomorrow with the mat covered in frost, so we should see some exciting timed runs and races. Please keep this in mind and wrap up warm.

Looking forward to seeing everyone for a good session tomorrow.

Gary W

Friday, November 18, 2016

Whizz Kids Cup Round 2 Slalom Garthdee Friday 18th November

Daisy, Kieran, Nathan and William do it again!

On a freezing cold night at Garthdee the Gordon Skiers racers were on fire again at the second instalment of the Kids Whizz cup.

Daisy Cowie once again won the girls event and showed her class and speed through the gates over this weeks slalom course. 2 out of 2 for Daisy so anyone wanting any tips on her success should catch up with her this Sunday at training!

In the boys it was a full house again but in an unfamiliar order this week. Younger brother Kieran Lennox took top spot from William Lennox with Nathan Smith edged out into third. It's great to see William vs Nathan nip and tuck racing at every event and training session with Gordon Skiers but it appears now they will have to keep a much closer eye on Kieran.

A HUGE well done and congratulations to all four!

It was a shame that Gordon Skiers couldn't have a few more attendees at tonight's event but once again other activities (sporting and otherwise) kept them back and not just the chill at Garthdee tonight!

Next installment of the Whizz Kids Cup is in a weeks time on November 25th when I believe a mini GS course will be set for all those not venturing to Edinburgh and the Bairns and Lassies on Saturday and the SSSA skier cross in Glasgow on Wednesday/Thursday.

Gordon Skiers will continue to run their Alford mid week training/race league on Wednesday despite some absences. Should be a great opportunity to pick up some high scoring league points so please let us know if you want to attend. email

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Mountain Safety Course - Saturday 19th November

As a reminder, Introduction to Mountain Safety day is taking place this Saturday.

It will take place in the Alford Community Centre, where we run the fitness training.

Alford Community Campus
Greystone Road
AB33 8TY

The day will run from 10am until 4 pm and the costs are as per below.

· Adult Member £30
· Child Member £20
· Adult non-Member £35
· Child non-Member £25

If you have a transceiver, then please bring it along, for practice. It would also be useful to bring along probes and shovels, of you have them too.

The course will include a practical examination of safety kit and different types of touring kit, transceiver practice, single and multiple burial scenarios intro to the SAIS web site and how it works, route planning and line choice.

Let ’s hope for nice weather too, but as some exercises will be run outdoors, please bring waterproofs. I’m sure the Community Centre has vending machine, but best to come prepared with lunches etc.

Gary W

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Sunday November 13th Alford Training

Another great Sunday training session today and the weather was almost back on our side again.

Race Dev 3 & 4 were on the hill first thing doing their timed runs and yet again the level of skiing is constantly improving each week and this is represented in the times below. Race Dev 1 and 2 were working hard on various drills with John and Jamie today and continuing to develop their all-round skiing. Performance squads were working with Alex and James today and followed the same routine as last week but developing the skills further which saw the two squads combine for a ‘mass synchronised short swing demo’ (still little bit of work to do before we make the BASI Demo Team). James shocked some of the Performance Squads guys during fitness with his flexible shoulder joints whilst doing stretches.

The head to head races were yet again very close and so close that some had to resort to some slightly suspect tactics in order to secure victories. Two teams had the same amount of wins through the pool stages so we went for a 1 race final which was so close that it ended with the 2 Simpson brothers racing head to head as the last skiers in each team. The result was so close that both flags dropped at the same stage we decided to call it a fair draw.

Special mention to Kathleen Ray who was along today to help coach with the younger groups and from the feedback I have heard she did a great job and stood up for herself in a full male coaching team. It was also great to have Mr Macolm Campbell back coaching today, Malcolm brings years of extensive instructing background and has his own unique manner with the kids which always goes down a treat - we look forward to having Malcolm back in the near future.


  • Last chance to order the new club softshell jacket. ORDER FORM
  • Mid week at Alford still available to book. CONTACT
  • Gordon Skiers old jacket left at Alford Nov 6th - still no claimers. Size 12. Let us know if yours please.

Gary is now back in the UK for a short while and will be back to Head Coach duties for next weekend so its time for me to step back as acting head coach and let him resume his position.

Best Wishes

Sunday times for Race Development 3 and 4

Today's times
Glen Liversedge - 11.91
Eva Sinclair - 10.97
Michael McIntosh - 10.84
Kiera Henderson- 10.88
Olivia Sinclair - 13.11
Carys Henderson - 12.24
Annabel MacKay - 12.10
Rasmus Ipsen - 11.53
Louisa McIntosh - 11.67
Emily Carry - 12.56
Jennifer Brown - 12.51

Oran McGurran - 11.22
Thomas Paterson - 13.55
Finlay Smith - 14.30
Catriona Brown - 12.41
Owen Campbell - 13.58
Shea Campbell - 14.52

Cameron  - 14.71

Friday, November 11, 2016

Training Sunday 13th November

The snow has been continuing to fall at The Lecht and they are hoping to open Saturday BUT there is a warmer stream of air coming in and the base doesn’t look to good so we will be training at Alford as usual on Sunday. However please feel free to keep your snow dances going as we will be monitoring the situation there for a potential cheeky pre-season training of we can.

Coaches working this weekend are Alex, James, Jamie, John, Andrew C, Callum and we are welcoming back Malcolm C to the team plus we have one of our older athletes Kathleen coming along to help as part of her training for Level 2 Instructors qualification.

The schedule is at the bottom of this post and the groups remain the same as the previous week. P1 and P2 plus RD1 and RD2 will be in the head to head races this weekend.

REMINDER: Please bring indoor, non-marking shoes, for use in the gym hall and stay off the mud while walking across to the fitness.


  • Wednesday 16th November sees us reach the half way point in our midweek training and race league at Alford. Feedback from these sessions has been very very positive with the attendance growing. If you haven't signed up yet don't worry, there is still time to enter and we can guarantee a fun and focused ski racing evening regardless of your age! Please ask any of the committee on Sunday if you want to know more.
  • Christmas Meal - The menu and signup sheet will be on the table again this weekend so please select your food choices and sign up- bring grandparents, Aunts/Uncles etc. All Welcome.
  • Bairns and Lassies - Entries are still open until Monday 21st November (unless the limit is reached). This is a great event and is on Saturday 26th November in the morning. Any questions about this then please ask, we will be providing full race support at this event for £10 per child and at the moment we have 11 entered, let’s see if we can get a few more entries from Gordon Skiers.
  • Official Gordon Skiers Soft-shell jackets orders close on Monday 14th. We have reached the minimum order required to secure the discount for the initial order. Should you miss this opportunity don't worry, the jackets will be added to the Rugby Plus site and available at direct order, all be it with a surcharge to cover shipping and delivery.
  • The second Cash for Kids Whizz Cup at Garthdee is taking place on Friday the 18th November. The event will be a Slalom this week (similar to the set up we train every week at Alford) and we would love to see as many children from the club there as possible racing for a great cause and simply enjoying a great evening. Race entry is only £2 per person and payable from 5pm in the ASC chalet.The open session fee of £10 is also payable at reception on the way in. 
As ever if there any questions regarding the club then please speak to a committee member, if there are any questions relating to racing then please find me and I will endeavour to answer.


Sunday, November 06, 2016

Alford Nov 6th Report

Well…. We obviously spoke too soon last weekend gloating about how good the weather had been for training so far. Today saw a very wet training session but the good news is all the skiers left the hill with smiles on their faces despite being cold and wet. 

Race Dev 1 & 2 were on timed runs first thing this morning and from what I could see there was a lot of energetic and enthusiastic runs being skied which was then reflected in the times- which can be found below. PS 1 and 2 were again put through their paces by Alex and myself working on outside ski pressurisation early in the turn, Alex followed up by doing some synchronised short swings with a seamless transition into tic-tacs whilst PS2 were working on posture and stamina. RD 3 & 4 continued the good work from last week with Stuart and Callum continuing to build the basic skills and the improvements from these groups from start of the autumn season is fantastic.

Once again the head to head races saw some great close racing between RD 3 & 4 and the Performance squads. 5 teams raced each other giving each team 4 races and a lot of the races were neck and neck to the final skiers with even one race being declared a dead heat draw. Modesty prevents me from saying which coach had the winning team this week!

Highlight of the day had to be Andrew Simpson (pictured above) who came up with a novel new wet race descent! The committee is now analysing his time with his mums brolly and determining if permitted to stand under FIS rulings! This could be the making of a new race series idea! 

See you all next weekend (or Wednesday for the Autumn league)


Times for Race Dev groups and today's "slick mat" conditions
Jack Sleigh 8.71
Harvey Sleigh 8.68
Torin 8.47
Logan Duncan 8.32
Kieran 7.97

Kizzy 10.53
Ruaridh 9.62
Murdo 8.38
Dylan 9.47
Findlay 9.09
Jacob 9.68

Friday, November 04, 2016

Sunday November 6th Alford Training

The snow is falling on the hills and is set to continue for a couple of days. Unfortunately not enough snow for training on this weekend so back to Alford it is.

This weekend the coaches are Alex, James, John, Andrew C, Callum and Stuart.

Gary is still in the Alpes this weekend so I will be continuing to act as head coach so please feel free to ask any questions about the training.

This week the head to head races are between our Performance squads and the Race Development 3 & 4 groups.

Please be ready to start your sessions at 9am prompt – this week’s schedule is below.

REMINDER: Please bring shoes suitable for indoor training- non marking soles.

Club Sale this Sunday!

It is also the Second hand kit sale this weekend so bring along any equipment or clothing you wish to sell and see what deals you can get. All items should be clearly marked with a name and selling price.

Christmas Dinner and Races

With Halloween behind us thoughts now turn to Santa! Gordon Skiers are starting to get into the festive spirit and have started the planning for the final training day followed by Christmas Dinner at Alford Golf Club. The final day will comprise of lots of head to head races and is a great spectacle for the whole family so feel free to bring them all along and then join us for Christmas Dinner. We have managed to secure a 3 course carvery meal for £19.50 (Adults) and £9.50 (U12 children). Payment will be on the day direct to the golf club but we need to know food choices in advance for Starter and Dessert courses. There will be a menu and signup sheet on a table at Alford this weekend so please sign up and let’s make it a fantastic end to the Autumn Dry Mat Season.

Official Gordon Skiers Team Jackets

All members should have recieved an email with details for ordering our new Official Team softshell jacket. Please get your orders in via the link in the email asap so we can ensure a club discount for everyone on a batch order.

See you Sunday