Glossary of Terms (A-H)

ACCREDITATION – identification provided to all registered race workers by the Accreditation Crew.  All volunteers check in with the Accreditation Crew each day they work.

AIR FENCE – an air filled safety system which is placed in areas to protect the racer from solid objects that cannot be moved (ie. Camera towers)  (different from Willy Bags)

A NET,  B SYSTEMS,  VEXAR, and KITZBUEL – types of safety fencing.  Your crew chief will run through what they all look like. “A” NET is a deflector system put up by the Safety Crew (with help from Course Crew at times) and is the big sprawling (usually orange) “fishing”  nets placed throughout the course.  “B SYSTEMS” are the deceleration nets which are put up by the volunteer Course Crew, , under the direction of your crew chief and are supported by poly poles.  Their function is to decelerate the skier and are placed in high incident (high risk of crashing) areas throughout the course.  “VEXAR or KITZBUHEL” is a dense slip skirting system which is secured onto the A net to allow the racer to “slip“ or actually ski off of the “A” net should their line conflict with where the net has been installed.

Putting up B-Net

ALPINA “B” NET - The build-in-place B net system requiring poles drilled into place, adjustment of top and bottom clips,  and then the hanging of the net.

BARRY “B” SYSTEM – A made-in-Canada “B” system that can be rapidly installed after proper training.  (Cannot be mixed with any other “B” systems.)  These (usually red) nets have poly poles attached and include cloth tie-tape and heavy plastic clips.

BOLT LINE – A rope or wire woven throgh the bottom edge of an A Net to provide the bottom anchor point for tying the net down at snow level. Usually held in place by being tied to "cookies, which are plywood disks buried and frozen into the snow..

Ploe and Net Cache at Lake LouiseCACHE – describes a collection of gear that has been placed in different sections of the course (poly poles, B systems, Willy bags, bamboo, rakes, shovels) Cache locations are pre determined to provide the gear required for the safety systems downhill of them.  Do  not use material from a cache unless directed to do so by a crew chief or coordinator.

COOKIES –Small squareish pieces of plywood which have a short length of rope through the middle of them.  These are use to secure the boltline of A NETs to the snow beneath.  Cookies are usually placed at the bottom of 3-foot deep holes drilled with an ice auger and then secured and frozen into place under a covering of boot-packed snow.  The rope attached to the cookie is tied to the bottom of the A NET (or Bolt Line) to provide tension in the A NET and to prevent the racer from submarining under the net.  There is no chocolate in these cookies!!

COORDINATORS - on-hill organizers who manage the "job jar" and dispense work assignments to the Crew Chiefs

COURSE –generally referred to as the area between the nets. HOWEVER, if you hear someone about you yell “COURSE” it means there is a racer or forerunner on the track and you must get out of the way ASAP!!!

COURSE HOLD – a brief stoppage of the race until the Jury feels conditions on course are safe (can be due to a racer down, poor track conditions, an obstruction on the course)

CROWD CONTROL - Tensor, rope, or netting fence that is placed to control access to spectators.  Never to be used for racer safety. AKA Spec Fence

DYE – Colored liquid vegetable dye) sprayed in a narrow line at the side of the track ("the line") that gives the racers definition of the course. Definition lines are also sprayed on the track at right angles near jumps and other severe changes in the pitch of the course, or where visibility for racers may be poor.  Applied by the Dye Crew.

INFERIORS - The two meter lengths of rope used to tie the bottom of an “A” net to the bolt line.

INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION RULES (ICR) - The rules of alpine ski racing as set down by the FIS. (Federation International Ski).  The ICR is published in a small blue booklet and is fairly readily available.   A copy is given to anyone taking an Officials Course.

GATE JUDGES – Gate Judges are among the most important Race Officials, once the race has started.  It is only through efficient gate judging that a race can be run fairly and successfully.  The Gate Judge is responsible for recording any racer who does not pass through the gates correctly, in his or her assigned area. The Gate Judge is usually the closest Race Official to witness incidents on the course that affect racers and must be notified by any racer who may lodge a protest regarding a hindrance in the Gate Judge's assigned area.

GATE KEY – a tool comprising a short open-slotted length of tubular steel used to screw  hinged gate poles into holes drilled in the snow.  Gate Keys   have two teeth at the end of the tube which slip over and fit into the hinge collar on the screw-in gate pole.  (Right hand thread)

GATE - a pair of poles between which a racer must pass to successfully complete a race..  The sequence of off-set gates, down the hill, forms the race couse and forces the racer to turn to stay within the course.. Each gate has a "turning pole" on the inside of the turn, and an "outside" pole.  The turning pole is usually hinged, while the outside pole is not.  In Downhill and GS, the inside and outside poles are actually each a pair of poles placed about 12 inches apart.  A coloured cloth panel is hung from each pair of poles.  

HIGH LINE - a wire rope cable  suspended from towers from which “A” NETS are suspended.  Long lengths of rope called  "power braid" connects the High Line to the top edge of the A-NETS.

HILL INSPECTION – (also "Course Inspection")  a designated time allowed for the racers and their coaches to inspect the course prior to that day’s race.  This is a very slow moving convoy, which travels down the hill so the teams can properly prepare for the challenges the course will offer.  Racers are not permitted to "ski" sections of the course.

HINGED POLES – the turning (inside of the turn) poles in the gates that form the race course.  They are called hinged poles because they have a spring hinge at the base that flexes when hit by a racer.