Nordic competes in ‘24 Hours of Wirth’

Teams struggle with lack of sleep, duration of meet


Carissa Prestholdt

Junior Olivia Etz skis downhill Feb. 29. Etz participated in the 24 hour ski relay race Feb. 28-29 at Theodore Wirth Park.

Talia Lissauer

Although freshman Rachel Katzovitz participated in the “24 Hours of Wirth ” ski event for 24 hours straight, she said she was too busy having fun to feel how tired she was. 

“(Not sleeping) hasn’t really sunk in yet, I know that when I get home I’m going to totally crash but I think it was really fun because it’s kind of like a giant team sleepover except nobody sleeps and you are just skiing and you get to the point where you are like ‘I don’t want ski anymore’ and then your team hypes you back up,” Katzovitz said. 

The “24 Hours of Wirth” ski event took place Feb. 28-29 on a 5k course. Skiers could compete as singles or on a team of four. Park had four teams of four compete.

According to junior Benn Katzovitz, those who were looking for a challenge to end the Nordic season participated, and he is happy with how they placed. 

“Part of the Nordic team (is competing because) we wanted a challenge for postseason and also another to get together before we moved on,” Katzovitz said. “I’m pretty happy with how it went, one team got third place and one team got fourth place I think it went pretty well regarding the skill of teams we were going up against.”

Parent chaperone Leigh Nelson said although the skiers were exhausted as the end of the race neared, they still were able to hype each other up.

Besides the length that it takes getting to hang out with each other the whole time, we were up almost all night just hanging out having fun, playing games”

— Benn Katzovitz

“The kids are getting a little tired toward the end (but) they are getting more pumped up again. I am just really proud that they all got together and decided to do something,” Nelson said

According to Rachel Katzovitz, it was hard to get through the night, but as soon as morning hit her team was ready to finish the race.

“I feel like in the beginning everyone was really overwhelmed, especially in the first two hours because it got really dark out and it was a long night because we didn’t sleep at all, but when the sun came up everyone got really excited and it got warm out so it was just better,” Katzovitz said.

As many students finish their final season skiing at Park, this event offered a good final team bonding, according to Nelson.

“I think it’s a great way to celebrate winter and Minnesota spirit for the winter and winter events. It’s a great way to be outside and be active,” Nelson said. “I think it gave them one more thing to look forward to, for some this is their last season and so it was one last thing for them to do together and for others, it is just the excitement of getting together and thinking of years to come what they can still do.”

Benn Katzovitz said his team of four had both one and two hour shifts and despite the duration of the race, they still managed to have lots of fun.

“Besides the length that it takes getting to hang out with each other the whole time, we were up almost all night just hanging out having fun, playing games,” Katzovitz said. “It feels like we’ve been training all season for this, it was very difficult. After the one-hour shifts I would take off all my ski gear and just sit down. It was pretty painful and then after the two-hour shift I was just in a lot of pain after an hour of that one, I had to slow down a lot and doubled my time for my last lap.”