Gibson leads area skiers at Besh Cup

Kenai Central’s Addison Gibson led Kenai Peninsula skiers Saturday at Besh Cup 5 in Fairbanks.

The Besh Cup races are used to choose Team Alaska for the Junior Nationals, which will be held March 3 to 11 in Lake Placid, New York.

Saturday’s format was interval freestyle races. In the Under-16 and over women’s five-kilometer freestyle, Gibson finished eighth in 17 minutes, 57 seconds. The race was won by Magdalen York of the Alaska Pacific University program in 16:15 seconds. Also from the peninsula, Kenai Central’s Riana Boonstra was 19th in 18:21 and Soldotna’s Kellie Arthur was 43rd in 21:30.

In the Under-18 and over men’s 10-kilometer race, Soldotna’s Koby Vinson led the way at 33:08. Ti Donaldson of Fairbanks was first in 29:21. Also from the peninsula, Kenai Central’s Karl Danielson was 24th at 33:47 and Soldotna’s Jeremy Kupferschmid was 30th at 34:23.

In the Under-16 boys five-kilometer race, Homer’s Caleb Rauch was 12th at 16:46, while Eli Hermanson won at 14:56.

The last Besh Cup of the season will be today in Fairbanks. Headed into the race, peninsula skiers Sadie Fox, Gibson and Karl Danielson currently hold down qualifying spots. Boonstra would have to pass four skiers in the standings to nab a spot, while Vinson would have to pass five.

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