It’s February, there’s snow in the mountains and here at Animetrics, we’re thrilled to be back on the slopes, racing in Meisters at Cranmore! For those unlucky enough to live elsewhere, these fun, community races give us local skiers an excuse to skip out of work early every Wednesday and face off – or “Face Plant,” as the case may be. (That’s our team name – and yes, we’re sponsored by Animetrics!)
In New Hampshire’s Mt. Washington Valley, we like to brag we “work where we play,” living and skiing regularly where others only get to vacation. So we’re grateful that Meisters allow us to get out and truly enjoy the natural beauty that surrounds us every day. The races, started in the early 1970s, were founded to offer locals in the business community affordable skiing, while creating community buzz about Cranmore Mountain Resort in North Conway. Now, between 550-600 racers compete every week on 40 different teams.
There are some pretty quick folks up here, but the Face Plants luckily have a secret weapon, and it’s not 2D to 3D. It’s our fearless team captain Kelli MacDonald, Animetrics Special Programs Manager. Kelli is a retired international ski racer and served as captain of her ski team at Saint Michael’s College located in Colchester, Vermont. Last year, she took first place in the women’s division (out of 120 women) and tenth place overall, racing against an additional 280 men. So our Meisters team is off to a good start this season, points-wise, with Kelli in the lead.
Trailing Kelli, we have skiers of varying ability, to say the least. Our team has 15 racers, and six are Animetrics employees including our newest member, Jon Stavis, who has been improving his time each week! Our VP of Engineering Marc Vaillant is also fast (he won a trophy in his division last year), as is Sean Doucette our systems engineer. Humble company president Paul Schuepp calls himself the “slowest racer on the team” and is fantasizing about getting a Franz Klammer GS Suit. Let’s not forget about our software engineer Joe Aliperti, who laughs all the way down the mountain on his snowboard; he’s just happy to clear the gates standing up. Last year, we were proud to win the “2012 Meisters Business Service Award,” this year we are hoping to be one of the top three overall teams!
Our coach and captain Kelli assures us that slower performance on some of our parts is simply an opportunity to improve our points, as a team. We plan to test that theory in the remaining races of this exciting 10-week season.