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The Stowe Derby is one of the oldest and most unique ski races in North America. It started in 1945 as a personal challenge between two amazing skiers- Austrian, Sepp Ruschp who was hired to come to America and head the new ski school at Stowe and Erling Strom, a world famous mountaineer from Norway. The challenge was the same as it is today – a race from the top of Mt. Mansfield, Vermont’s highest peak to the historic village of Stowe…on a single pair of skis. The ultimate test of a skiers ability. Ruschp was the winner of the first Stowe Derby.
Today, the race attracts over 900 competitors, ranging from Canadian Cross Country Ski Team members and NCAA Champions to recreational skiers looking for a thrill.
Over the course, participants ski through approximately 20 km of challenging terrain, racing down Mt. Mansfield’s Toll Road and along the Stowe Recreation Path before reaching the finish at The Stowe High School. The course has a total vertical drop of almost 2,700 feet. The winners will complete the course in about 43 minutes, while recreational skiers can take a couple of hours to go the same distance.
Fat Bike Race
Back by popular demand, the Fat Bike Race will take place after the skiers. Riders will compete on the same course, but start at the bottom of the Toll Road (14km). The two races offered are the Fat Derby or the Fat Derby Meister, a combination of the freestyle race and the Fat Derby.
The Derby Short Course
Presented by Ben & Jerry’s, The Derby Short Course is designed for children ages 6 and up or those who prefer to avoid the rigors of a long and sustained descent. The specific portion of the race attracts around about 100 competitors. The 6 km course begins in a mass start near the Stowe Recreation Path Parking Lot at and follows the final leg of the Long Course.
If January 13 doesn’t work for the Stowe Derby, the race will take place on February 24. No refunds will be issued if you sign up for the race and it is held on either date. Please note that if both race dates are cancelled, all paying racers will automatically be refunded. A $25 processing fee will be deducted to cover event costs.
- Save up to 30% at participating Stowe properties when booking for the Stowe Derby.