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Etoile d'or 2018 15-18 March Les Houches

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Is anybody else going to this/has kids racing in this? Despite the title, it's nothing to do with the Etoile d'or ski school badge, its a big French competition for U10/U12/U14 on 15-18 March in Les Houches. It's open to all those of appropriate age who race in the french system (including Fleche & FFS) with good enough scores, on the conditions that they don't live in a ski resort and don't have parents who are ski instructors (!).
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
https://www.chamonix.com/etoile-d-or,42-4831229,fr.html says it's only for kids registered with the ESF - so not the kids with an FFS competitor (or leisure) license? Where can we find more info - and is there really no U8? Smile
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Right- holiday from 15-18th March then Very Happy Very Happy
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Official site here
http://www.clubesf.com/competitions/epreuves-nationales/38eme-etoile-dor

It’s open to ESF and FFS I think racers as long as they meet the criteria. You need to be entered by your local ESF which has to approve you, and there are limits (12 I think) on racers per ESF school.

I’ll be out there with my 10 yr old, so shout if you are going and I may be able to arrange some course inspection assistance etc.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
"CONDITIONS DE PARTICIPATION
Les concurrents, filles ou garçons, doivent être élèves des ESF, être
né(e)s en 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, figurer au classement
ski open au 5 mars 2018 et être en possession au minimum :
Pour les microbes (U10) : Flèche de bronze
pour les poussines (U12) : Flèche de bronze"

So that's us out (U8 and not in an ESF), if we go to Les Houches that weekend my son will be gutted he can't compete!
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Is it normal for national level events in France to have a U8 category? Coq d'or doesn't even run a U10 let alone U8. U10 this year in Etoile d'or is a new thing, previously it was U12.

To be "in" an ESF you simply need to persuade an ESF to enter you in their team. I can see that would be tough if you have no relationship with any ESF, but if you do a competition class with ESF and/or a few Fleche events, that may be sufficient depending on ESF. My son isn't "Club ESF" we just use them for lessons and races.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Not sure at national level, but there are regional competitions with U8 in with Alpine FFS clubs (see ffs.fr) - it's obviously quite laidback. The U10 group seems much larger so I assume parents in France usually start their kids on competition around 8? Probably if they don't reach fleche before?
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@snowdave, hi. Over the years many british kids in les arcs have been in the les arcs esf team. To get in the esf team for les arce and race for the esf school at the etoile dor a boy must have passed compertition class and hold the silver fleche and chamois level badge to be in the u 12/14 team. For the u 10 team they must have broze fleche, but most have silver.

They only choose 12 kids per age group so most kids in les arcs that go to nationals have the gold fleche badge. The etoile dor is the esf champoinship for france. Only kids in esf teams compete at this event. Les Arcs kids are sponsored for this event by esf les arcs. The kids really enjoy the event and the extra time off school of course. As it is a national championship it has never been a problem getting the british kids let out of school to travel to France for this event.

The best kids at the etoile dor then go onto the coq dor which is a championship event for the best kids in french ski clubs plus the best kids from the esf championships. I have had kids in coq dor as well. At coq dor ffs and esf registered kids compete against eachother.

At both these events there are about 1000 kids racing on maybe four courses all at the same time. Quite amazing to see and the events i have been to run on time, cost the parents very little and all the kids get three runs down the courses over the long weekend. These events normally include slalom, gaint slalom, fun course and ski cross.

If anyone has specific questions about this year's or next years events please PM me. Hope this helps for any British parents wanting to get their kids into racing with the esf in france.

Snowdave, how did your kid get on at the etoile dor?
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@snowcrazy, thanks for that. I concur about how amazingly well organised both events were (I watched the coq d’or in Les Menuires this year) To process around 1000 kids through 2 runs and be done in time for lunch is incredible. It compares well with reports I get of the various GB kids events, and I highly recommend it to aspiring racers as an alternative to the very expensive UK organised events.

The event was free for all our kids, and the goody bag included a really nice jacket that my son wears everywhere!

It was my sons first race of this scale, and his main achievement was to stay in for both runs... exactly a third of kids in his category skied out. Beyond that he was at the low end (albeit not quite the bottom) of the tables. If he wants to do more racing he needs a lot more training on salted/watered heavily rutted courses, vs the local flèche where his points means he always gets a good bib. We’ve already bought some proper GS skis vs the hybrid skis he was racing on.

Next year my daughter is old enough to race so I’m sure we’ll be back.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Hi Dave, sounds like they had fun. I presume you are based in Three Valleys if you were watching the Coq dor at Les Men. Great event and well run. We are over in Les Arcs, but travel down to Three Valleys for races and freeride stuff. Maybe see you around next season at one of the Comps in France. Very Happy
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