PARA Racing for 2020/2021

Here is what we know so far and what we are planning.

The PARA Board of Directors have been meeting (via Zoom) on a regular basis over the past months.  We also been meeting regularly with the United States Ski and Snowboard Eastern Region for additional guidance. In PARA, we have a number of teams affiliated with major skiing corporations and we had to await decisions from those corporations as to if skiing was even going to happen this upcoming season.  All PARA areas are planning to open and we've been working with the different areas as to what ski racing looks like in PA.

There will be racing in PARA as of today.  Racing will look different.  United States Ski and Snowboard has rightly placed a 100 participant limit on any racing in the US.  The USSS-Eastern guidance is to have events "closer to home".  There will be less opportunites for out-of-division racing events on the east coast.   The Eastern Championship events will have significantly reduced participation.  Many USSS-Eastern divisions are discussing boots-in-the-car to boots-on-the-hill without any need to use the ski area lodges.  Very different times.

What does this mean in general - The U19 Cup series has been revised for one year to reduce travel.  PA Cups 1-5 have been canceled for the coming season.  The U19s Championships will only consist of a Finals weekend at Elk that athletes would qualify for through races in each region.  PARA was intending to implement a statewide U16 series as well for 2020/2021.  Again, due to the circumstances, the U16s will revert back to racing within region and qualifying for a U16 Finals being planned at Blue.  U14 and U12 will also continue to race within region.  As of now, we are planning for U14 Finals at Seven Springs and a U12 Finals at Ski Roundtop.  The format of these Finals is being worked between the Race Organizing Committee and the PARA Board of Directors so we have a consistent format where applicable.  By mid-January, the Board of Directors will again evaulate the covid circumstances and determine if these Final events will occur for the 2020/2021 season.  Again, the goal is to keep athletes as local as possible for events this season.

This allows PARA to refocus our efforts from the big 150+ racer days to smaller events with potentially more runs per day.  Potentially some events where the morning is racing and the afternoon is a skill competition.  Each PARA region is working diligently planning events and schedules that allows us to continue skiing under the constaints this year has inflicted.  Understand that we are all working under a number of constraints and we all need to be diligent in reducing the spread. 

On behalf of the PARA Board of Directors,

David Bond - President

October 9, 2020