I ski NASTAR, usually I ski the gates on Sundays when my membership in Ski Brule’s friends and neighbor’s club entitles to me to some free NASTAR skiing. Even if it is not free I often times will participate.
I really like to do it, it helps me to gauge my skiing ability.
The course I ski is a short one. I have found if you ski the course competently and edge the course you will come away with a bronze medal. To do better, you must attack the course!
Burst out of the starting house! Skate and pole like crazy! If you are a competent skier you can handle the rest of the course and medal, if you have to bleed some speed or take a bad line you get a bronze, if your line is good and you ski it well you will do better. However, the start sets the tone for the rest of the course. If you ski competently without an aggressive start you limit yourself to bronze.
Typically I pole & skate just short of the first gate and then I tuck. I should probably pop back up and skate & pole to the second gate too as it is also on relatively flat terrain, however last weekend once in my tuck I held it.
I could tell my Sunday runs were red hot. Usually I run out and stay well down the rise and can make the turn to the chair real easily (or back to the finish house). However, this last weekend (Feb 6 & 7) I was carrying straight till I was near the top of the bunny run and then I was able to brake and get myself turned back around. I’m going pretty fast and I don’t pop out of my tuck until I am sure I have broken the light.
In fact, when skiing be mindful of any racing in progress. Do not ski through the light beams (even if you ski the gates ski out before coming to the light beam) and notice where those finishing up will be skiing through they will be skiing hot and even if they are good (and usually they are) they will have a hard time getting themselves out of their tuck, on their edges, skidding, and/or turned around in any kind of quick manner.