If waxing too impt, try a format that relies less on wax?

Talk about upcoming events

Moderator: Moderator Group

User avatar
JeffOYB
Ski Forum God
Posts: 1185
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2007 6:44 pm
Location: Williamston, MI
Contact:

If waxing too impt, try a format that relies less on wax?

Postby JeffOYB » Tue Feb 09, 2016 1:54 pm

If waxing continues to be an issue that keeps the USA off the podium and influences many other races hugely, is there a kind of XC ski racing that would diminish the role that waxing plays?

I'd think that a hillier course might do that. When downhills get steep enough control is more of an issue than optimizing glide. Indeed, braking becomes critical. Less glide is better.

And is there a kind of uphill skiing where glide nuances are less of the deciders for the podium? Offhand, I might guess that steeper up's might do that. But also events that go through more temp changes -- I guess that would mean longer events -- to catch different amounts of shade and sun and warm and cold so that any particular wax job can't be as "spot on" for the whole event.

I note in old touring lore (never updated since because touring is irrelevant, right?) that it was determined that for day-long outings that nowax skis ended up being faster than waxables since one didn't have to stop and start as much for waxing or dedicate any time to wax-changing even if it could be included in feedstops.

Hmmm, what if skis could be changed more often -- and more easily. This might add complexity on the one hand, but it would reduce the influence of any one particular wax solution on the other hand. If a skier found that their skis were dogs they wouldn't be stuck with them the whole race. Like bikes in bike races. WC ski races already do have ski-changes sometimes -- and for tough waxing days no less, right?
Last edited by JeffOYB on Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:44 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Jeff Potter
http://OutYourBackDoor.com
indie outdoor adventure, culture, heritage
...bikes, boats, skis, luggage, media & more!

Pat
xcskiforum 20K
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2015 9:37 am

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby Pat » Wed Feb 10, 2016 11:11 am

Jeff -- sounds pretty logical -- kind of like that car racing series where everyone drove the identical set up for cars. Best driver would win in theory at least.

Pat

Blah
xcskiforum 40K
Posts: 381
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2012 8:43 am

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby Blah » Wed Feb 10, 2016 12:01 pm

??

Last I checked the US has been on the podium many times this season and the team continues to shine.

User avatar
JeffOYB
Ski Forum God
Posts: 1185
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2007 6:44 pm
Location: Williamston, MI
Contact:

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby JeffOYB » Wed Feb 10, 2016 3:51 pm

Yeah, we do great now'n'then. Lucky skis seems to be a factor. When we're off the podium (or anyone is) I hear comments about the whole team flubbing it for the wax that day, etc. Or heavy snowfall late in a race that throws off the favorites giving a special break to the low-ranked skiers who happened to start earlier before the snow.

Or I see mention that our ski-crew works outside along the trail on a bench while Team Norway has a wax trailer semi-bus.

...So if waxing could be made less a factor.

Hence: steeper terrain ... or ... longer events taking in greater variety of conditions giving less advantage to any one solution. ??
Jeff Potter
http://OutYourBackDoor.com
indie outdoor adventure, culture, heritage
...bikes, boats, skis, luggage, media & more!

DMK
xcskiforum 30K
Posts: 106
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2006 3:38 pm
Location: Anchorage

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby DMK » Wed Feb 10, 2016 5:40 pm

Yeah, we do great now'n'then. Lucky skis seems to be a factor. When we're off the podium (or anyone is) I hear comments about the whole team flubbing it for the wax that day, etc. Or heavy snowfall late in a race that throws off the favorites giving a special break to the low-ranked skiers who happened to start earlier before the snow.

What? Have you followed the US Women's team this year at all? I think almost everything you said above is 100% false, Caitlin's bronze medal at World's can be partially chalked up to conditions and luck of the seed but I don't think Jessie's silver can, she was a later starter. The few (and far between) odd comments I have read about waxing was more of skier mistake or wrong ski choice than wax or waxers. If you have actual quotes and proof of your statements please present them. The US Women's team is completely kicking a$$ this year and has gotten there incrementally over the past several years. I think you often throw theories out there and that is fine but give the women the respect they have earned through their efforts.

User avatar
JeffOYB
Ski Forum God
Posts: 1185
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2007 6:44 pm
Location: Williamston, MI
Contact:

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby JeffOYB » Thu Feb 11, 2016 12:54 pm

I don't mean to take anything away.

I just saw a "bad skis" remark recently. Then I saw a comment about our trackside waxing vs. the semi-trailer.

Waxing has been a huge factor forever.

Let's feel free to take the US women out of it.

Would you say that waxing is becoming more or less relevant? Are all the teams getting closer together in their wax results and styles?

If it's becoming more relevant or is still really decisive with a huge amount of effort and resources going to wax, is it maybe worth considering changes that make waxing less relevant?
Jeff Potter
http://OutYourBackDoor.com
indie outdoor adventure, culture, heritage
...bikes, boats, skis, luggage, media & more!

User avatar
jt10000
xcskiforum 40K
Posts: 493
Joined: Sat Nov 27, 2010 8:56 am
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby jt10000 » Fri Feb 12, 2016 4:11 am

Jeff Potter wrote:
If waxing continues to be an issue that keeps the USA off the podium

and
Yeah, we do great now'n'then. Lucky skis seems to be a factor.


The premise of your post is wrong on multiple levels.

Waxing problems are not keeping the USA off the podium in any way more than other teams. USA waxing is at least on par with the average of other teams on the World Cup, and perhaps slightly better.

Luck is not the reason the US does well with wax most of the time - they do well because of good systematic work. Your last statement about lucky skis is frankly insulting.

Jeff Poter wrote:
Let's feel free to take the US women out of it.


WTF is wrong with you? We've got world class women on world class skis with world class waxing (which the men get too), but that combination undermines the premise of your narrative that USST waxing is sub-par, so take them out of the discussion.

Weak. Perhaps sexist. Certainly logically weak insofar as you just want to ignore something that disproves your premise.

Yes waxing is expensive in terms of both material and staffing. Yes, the US team cannot match the resources of the biggest two or three nations (Sweden and Norway). Yes, luck sometimes comes into play (for all teams) in changing conditions.

But this is not specific to the USST. Now the idea of making waxing less important and/or expensive might be a good thing in general - perhaps at scholastic levels or local levels and maybe even the highest levels or all levels. We could have that discussion if you want.

So why don't you just say "What would it take to make waxing less important to even the playing field? Which I'm interested in because I don't like the expense/I'm old-school/I don't like the technical aspects/whatever" rather than shrouding your desires in untruths, half-truths and old truths.
Temporary Signature ---- http://bit.ly/2hKgHk7 ----- Temporary Signature

User avatar
skiffrace
xcskiforum 30K
Posts: 138
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 5:05 pm
Location: Gdynia, Poland

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby skiffrace » Fri Feb 12, 2016 6:24 am

Your last statement about lucky skis is frankly insulting.

I don't see anything insulting here, or in other parts of that post. "Lucky skis' may indeed be a factor (albeit the probability is small), just like a lucky puff of wind was the reason some Olympic medals were won in ski jumping.
OTOH, "the fortune favors the prepared", so the teams with best waxing technique are most likely to get "lucky".
However, I disagree with the key premise of this discussion. Waxing is the inherent part of XC skiing, just like tire changes on the fly are inherent part of some car races, or tricky tuning is part of musical competitions. You can greatly reduce the waxing factor by, well, switching to skating technique.
US is a second-tier team in XC country skiing for reasons more profound than bad wax.
The sport is dominated by Nordics, because to them skiing is an essential part of life, and where everybody skis almost from the day they can walk.
That's what they do, and do it better than anybody else.

User avatar
jt10000
xcskiforum 40K
Posts: 493
Joined: Sat Nov 27, 2010 8:56 am
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby jt10000 » Fri Feb 12, 2016 6:42 am

I don't see anything insulting here, or in other parts of that post. "Lucky skis' may indeed be a factor (albeit the probability is small), just like a lucky puff of wind was the reason some Olympic medals were won in ski jumping.
It's insulting because the US team having good skis generally hasn't been luck. It's been careful prep - understanding the venue, the snow, the skis, the wax, the grinds, the athletes and how the athletes and techs communicate, plus good planning on changing conditions. The US team consistently has good skis. Consistently.
Temporary Signature ---- http://bit.ly/2hKgHk7 ----- Temporary Signature

User avatar
JeffOYB
Ski Forum God
Posts: 1185
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2007 6:44 pm
Location: Williamston, MI
Contact:

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby JeffOYB » Fri Feb 12, 2016 11:11 am

Not insulting.

Bad form to be so negative about me as a fellow forum member just because I remark about the perennial non-skiing factor in our sport. Maybe this year our women have had good skis. Consistently good skis isn't what I recollect about our program at least over the years. It would be great if it's getting better. I suppose I just miss those headlines.

I did mention the current ad about our trailside bench vs the Norwegians semi-truck, so there's that.

It's NOT insulting if I have somehow missed appreciating our rep for great ski prep. If my impression is off, a few links about our consistent wax program from over the years might help fix that.

I often hear commentator remarks during race videos about various skiers having terrible wax. I suppose it happens to a few in most races. The fickleness of skis and of conditions favoring some skis over others depending on start times is worth pondering. I think the US team has both benefited and been hurt by that. I think your reaction is overboard, but it often is.

I'm not necessarily old school. I'm cutting edge! I'm thinking of the future of the sport. I like using what's new and what works. Is waxing fickleness a selling point? Where is the best potential for public interest and relevance? I like waxing and ski-tech just fine personally but I consider it esoteric and don't see it bringing ANYONE into the sport. I also see it being a big barrier in many ways. If we have a hard time getting any popular ski vids out there just showing the sport in action, I suspect it would be vastly harder to get viewership by putting cameras in the ski-tech areas.

(The technical/pit aspects in cyclocross also represent a burden -- crew, B-bike, power-washers, freeze-ups -- but CX pits at least have some camera-appeal because they're included in the racing.)
Jeff Potter
http://OutYourBackDoor.com
indie outdoor adventure, culture, heritage
...bikes, boats, skis, luggage, media & more!

User avatar
jt10000
xcskiforum 40K
Posts: 493
Joined: Sat Nov 27, 2010 8:56 am
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby jt10000 » Fri Feb 12, 2016 12:58 pm

Bad form to be so negative about me as a fellow forum member just because I remark about the perennial non-skiing factor in our sport.

Oh no, that's not an accurate characterization of why I'm being negative about you (and I am certainly being negative about you). I said that in relation to the USST, your facts are off. If you want to find ways to take waxing out of the sport at any level, that's an open discussion I haven't said anything either way about - in fact I explicitly said we can have that discussion if you like.

Note DMK's question to you:
Have you followed the US Women's team this year at all?


The answer is clear: no.

I'll close by saying that when someone posts stuff that is not true I sometimes respond with negative comments. I am happy to do that. That's a good thing.


EDITED TO ADD Jeff Potter wrote about very steep downhills
Less glide is better.
Oh come on!
Last edited by jt10000 on Fri Feb 12, 2016 4:24 pm, edited 6 times in total.
Temporary Signature ---- http://bit.ly/2hKgHk7 ----- Temporary Signature

User avatar
jt10000
xcskiforum 40K
Posts: 493
Joined: Sat Nov 27, 2010 8:56 am
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby jt10000 » Fri Feb 12, 2016 1:05 pm

Is waxing fickleness a selling point? Where is the best potential for public interest and relevance? I like waxing and ski-tech just fine personally but I consider it esoteric and don't see it bringing ANYONE into the sport. I also see it being a big barrier in many ways. If we have a hard time getting any popular ski vids out there just showing the sport in action, I suspect it would be vastly harder to get viewership by putting cameras in the ski-tech areas.


Fair questions. I haven't commented on them at all and certainly not been "negative" about these questions - just factual errors in your posts.
Temporary Signature ---- http://bit.ly/2hKgHk7 ----- Temporary Signature

Blah
xcskiforum 40K
Posts: 381
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2012 8:43 am

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby Blah » Fri Feb 12, 2016 2:30 pm

JT1000 is correct, your comments are way off base. We have been having consistent top results now for several years. Kikkan was the overall sprint champion like 4 years ago, that wasn't luck.... When Diggins and Caldwell each won a Tour de Ski stage that had nothing to do with luck.

Beyond that you are placing too much importance on wax. Certainly it's a major factor on the World Cup but so is ski selection, grind selection, oh...and training.

Taking away wax as a factor would just make ski and grind selection that much more of a big deal and it's impossible by the way.

I don't think that anything they are doing on the World Cup regarding waxing is keeping people here in the US out of the sport. Most master skiers don't even know any of the skiers on the World Cup, they think the local master skier that won a small marathon is the best skier in the country.

UPrSKr
xcskiforum 30K
Posts: 120
Joined: Wed Nov 28, 2007 7:05 am

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby UPrSKr » Fri Feb 12, 2016 3:42 pm

[quote]Most master skiers don't even know any of the skiers on the World Cup, they think the local master skier that won a small marathon is the best skier in the country.[/quot

It seems to me that there is more than enough erroneous statements for the sake of shock value to go around on this website. Jeff is certainly not the only troll around here, and concerning the endemic over emphasis on wax prevalent in cross country ski racing today, he does have a point.

Although I don't really like to be identified as a "master skier" because it seems to have become quite the slur in some elitist skiing circles, I guess as a retired 58 year old that loves to ski, I do fit the demographics. Racing is not that big of a deal to me although I still participate in a few events. One of them is the Birkie, and everywhere I turn there will be someone trying to get some of my money. I try to support as many as possible but I'm just a poor old retired yooper with only so much to spend. That's the irony. I don't know what goes on at the world cup, but at second tier races like US nationals there is more $$ pissed away on ski waxes that are just being tested and not even raced on. Who pays for all of this? I'm guessing that its the poor schmuck wannabe master racers that are expected to buy this ---- as if it is really going to make that big of a difference with their worthless abilities. Yeah, you're a lowly master blaster, but please keep spending the money to keep us in business.

The best skier in this country (USA)? Right now the one correct answer would be Lindsey Vonn, and I would hope that any local master skier would know that. In Nordic skiing we have several up and coming skiers that show real potential but no one of "best of all time" caliber, at least not yet, and that is an incredibly lofty goal. Yet some Nordic snobs refuse to even acknowledge what we have representing this country right now albeit in another discipline.

Blah
xcskiforum 40K
Posts: 381
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2012 8:43 am

Re: If waxing an issue for USST, format that uses less wax?

Postby Blah » Fri Feb 12, 2016 9:16 pm

I think you are being WAY too sensitive here man. Seriously....

I don't think master skier is a slur at all. Master blaster maybe but I use that as a self deprecating term.

Here's my thoughts to your statement:

Most all of the teams that are waxing at the US Nationals level are purchasing their wax. They may not buy it at retail but they are not getting it for free because you got duped into buying it.

I'm not sure who treated you poorly but I don' think that represents the average skier chasing the Supertour series.

I mean what I say though. Most nordic skiers in my area had no idea that a local skier was an Olympian until they won a local marathon. That doesn't mean I think that they are stupid. That was simply pointing out the fact Jeff's statement that overcomplicated waxing at the World Cup level is keeping people out of the sport of nordic skiing is really not true.

Seriously how did we get to Alpine skiing now?? I would disagree with your statement we already have a best of all time nordic skier coming through right now, Kikkan Randall. She is easily the best female nordic skier that we have ever had. I'm not sure if she will bounce back from a down year and having a baby but what she did prior to that was truly historic. Jessie Diggins has the potential to do similar things.

Nordic snobs refuse to acknowledge Lindsey Vonn?? What are you talking about???

UPrSKr wrote:
Most master skiers don't even know any of the skiers on the World Cup, they think the local master skier that won a small marathon is the best skier in the country.[/quot

It seems to me that there is more than enough erroneous statements for the sake of shock value to go around on this website. Jeff is certainly not the only troll around here, and concerning the endemic over emphasis on wax prevalent in cross country ski racing today, he does have a point.

Although I don't really like to be identified as a "master skier" because it seems to have become quite the slur in some elitist skiing circles, I guess as a retired 58 year old that loves to ski, I do fit the demographics. Racing is not that big of a deal to me although I still participate in a few events. One of them is the Birkie, and everywhere I turn there will be someone trying to get some of my money. I try to support as many as possible but I'm just a poor old retired yooper with only so much to spend. That's the irony. I don't know what goes on at the world cup, but at second tier races like US nationals there is more $$ pissed away on ski waxes that are just being tested and not even raced on. Who pays for all of this? I'm guessing that its the poor schmuck wannabe master racers that are expected to buy this ---- as if it is really going to make that big of a difference with their worthless abilities. Yeah, you're a lowly master blaster, but please keep spending the money to keep us in business.

The best skier in this country (USA)? Right now the one correct answer would be Lindsey Vonn, and I would hope that any local master skier would know that. In Nordic skiing we have several up and coming skiers that show real potential but no one of "best of all time" caliber, at least not yet, and that is an incredibly lofty goal. Yet some Nordic snobs refuse to even acknowledge what we have representing this country right now albeit in another discipline.


Return to “Races and Racing”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest