Gold Medalist Diann Roffe Reviews The Ellipse.

My testing plan was to seek out as many varied snow conditions as I could find and give the Ellipse a good spin. Being partial to GS and Super G turns, the core of my race background, I wasn’t sure that an all wood ski with a 15 m radius, a fair amount of rocker and 94mm underfoot was going to be all that much fun. Add a little speed, hard, man-made snow and some nice high edge angles and I fully expected to have some twisting, chattering and more feedback than I wanted from such a lightweight ski.

I couldn’t have been more wrong, despite the fact that my first turns were made while keeping my 5 year-old from hurtling down the wrong trail. But even with the distraction, I kept reminding myself to “feel” the ski’s personality.

This is what I felt. They were simply NICE. My first sensory reaction was that the rocker was just right, making short, relaxed turns really easy. The snow was pretty good, so finding tougher skiing conditions was a challenge. I thought that once I pointed them downhill on a couple firm groomed black diamonds, they’d show their true colors.

Surprise, surprise. When I rolled over onto the steep section of Pickeroon, the skis responded smoothly. But wait, surely an all-wood ski would get jumpy as I added more speed. They were bound to break away from the pressure as I demanded more from them. I waited for the twist and the inevitable chatter.

Not only were they responsive, quick and smooth, but the Ellipse stayed under me, and more importantly, with me. I hit the bottom of the pitch and was wearing that grin they always teased me about on the tour. I was still waiting for a certain skittishness you’d expect from such a lightweight ski. I expected it to start avoiding the pressure I was inflicting.

Frankly, I expected to be chattering more on my first day of skiing on firm, man-made snow. At 46 years old, my skiing isn’t all that competitive any more. But, even factoring that into the equation, I searched to find the ski’s faults. I was sure they would show themselves. So I tested the ski hard in between nicely smeared turns behind the 5 year-old. Whatever my feet demanded, the Ellipse delivered.

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