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GARMISCH, Germany — A husband and wife who grew up skiing together in Aspen, Colo., swept their races this weekend at the 2003 U.S. Forces Europe Ski Series.

“I just try to relax and have a good time,” said Sally Oates, 33, who won the giant slalom Saturday and the slalom Sunday for senior civilian women.

She was joined on the victory stand by her husband, U.S. Army Special Forces Capt. Jeremie Oates, who won both weekend races for senior military men.

Those runs, coupled with their performances in the first leg of the championship series last month in Aviano, Italy, earned the Oatses the overall titles in their respective classes.

Even though each won by a decisive margin Sunday — Sally by more than 20 seconds and Jeremie by more than 12 in combined times — they said they weren’t the only good skiers there.

“The competition is good,” said 32-year-old Jeremie Oates, who is stationed in Pfullendorf, Germany, near Lake Constance, where he is part of a multi-national unit of Special Operations troops that conducts specialized military training.

Sunday’s winners were determined by the combined times made in two runs. The course was changed between runs.

Also claiming titles were: Debbie Riplinger of Mannheim, Germany, in women’s masters (40 and older); Jeff Allen of Garmisch in men’s military masters; Louis Abell of Fürth, Germany, in men’s civilian masters; Edward Johnson of Garmisch in men’s civilian seniors (ages 30-39); and Leigh Plowman of Garmisch in the pro-open division for men and women who work as ski or snowboard instructors, guides or other professionals.

The races were held on the mountain above the Armed Forces Recreation Centers-Europe’s Hausberg Lodge. About 200 adults and children, both military personnel and civilians, participated.

The fastest skier on the roughly 500-meter course Sunday — when the turning gates are closer together than they were for the giant slalom — turned out to be 12-year-old Kristin Ellis of Garmisch, Germany.

She posted a combined time of 49.97 seconds. Jeremie Oates had the next fastest set at 52.38.

Sally Oates said she wasn’t surprised by Ellis’ times. She said children were among the fastest skiers present. What she may not have known is that many of them spend a lot of time of the slopes. For example at Garmisch Elementary School, a Department of Defense Dependents School-Europe facility, the curriculum includes student skiing every Wednesday.

Both Oateses competed as teenagers in Colorado and in the U.S. National Junior Ski Championships.

“When you grow up in Aspen, you grow up skiing. It’s just like playing softball somewhere else in the country,” Jeremie Oates said.

Fifteen-year-old Kaitlin Sherman and 11-year-old Paige Eckley, both of Garmisch, found the course too difficult Sunday. Although they had posted good times, they were disqualified after the first run because they had each missed a gate.

“It’s tricky,” said Sherman, who skis on the team for the Munich International School.

This was Eckley’s first race, even though she skis weekly with her classmates from Garmisch Elementary.

“I was a little nervous but it’s fun to go fast,” she said.

Top slalom finishers

• Girls minors (ages 6-9): Chelsea Smithback of Garmisch, 1:04.3; Anna Wannisch of Garmisch, 1:09.96.• Boys minors: Sammy Smithback of Garmisch, 59.09; Alex Denikiewicz of Garmisch, 1:01.15; Aryne Riley of Garmisch, 1:13.03.• Girls juniors (10-12): Kristin Ellis of Garmisch, 49.97; Ania Denikiewicz of Garmisch, 1:07.90; Katie Riley of Garmisch, 1:18.00• Boys juniors: Doran Lodgson of Bamberg, 59.38; Jimmy Reed of Garmisch, 59.52; Cezar Plascenicia of Garmisch, 1:10.• Girls seniors (13-17): Anne Danczyk of Oberramergau, Germany, 1:04.57; Katie Allen of Garmisch, 1:09.87; Lauren Reed of Garmisch, 1:11.21• Boys seniors: Chris Parra of Garmisch, 59.58; Cory Hodges of Garmisch, 59.92; Phillip Abell of Fürth, 1:08:91.• Women’s masters (ages 40-plus): Debbie Riplinger of Mannheim, 1:11.63.• Men’s military masters: Gary Danczyk of Oberramergau, 1:09.18.• Men’s civilian masters: Louis Abell of Fürth, 58.47; Douglass Ben Reed of Garmisch, 58.94; Larry Baker of Bad Aibling, Germany, 104.95.• Women’s civilian seniors (30 to 39): Sally Oates of Pfullendorf, 58.57; Anja Johnson of Garmisch, 1:18.70.• Men’s military seniors: Jeremie Oates of Pfullendorf, 52.38; John Winborn of Stuttgart, Germany, 1:04.66; John Lodgson of Bamberg, Germany, 1:08.49.• Men’s civilian seniors: Edward Johnson 1:00.00 of Garmisch; Jack Smithback of Garmisch, 1:12.62.• Pro-Open: Leigh Plowman of Garmisch, 54.29; Jan Denikiewicz of Garmisch, 1:03.54; Ewa Denikiewicz of Garmisch, 1:06.82

Overall series winners, based on times and points, from the weekend’s races in Garmisch and races two weeks ago in Italy.

• Women’s masters: Riplinger; 2nd, Annell Danczyk of Oberramergau; 3rd, Sue Allen of Garmisch.• Men’s military masters:Allen; Gary Danczyk of Oberramergau; 3rd, James McNamara of Oberammergau.• Men’s civilian masters: Abell; 2nd, Larry Baker of Bad Aibling, 3rd; Douglass Ben Reed of Garmisch.• Women’s civilian seniors: Oates; 2nd, Anja Johnson of Garmisch; 3rd, Giorgia Bullock of Aviano, Italy.• Men’s military seniors: Oates; 2nd, John Logsdon of Bamberg; 3rd, Richard Potter of Aviano.• Men’s civilian seniors: Johnson; 2nd, Jack Smithback of Garmisch; 3rd, Ken Grim of Bad Aibling.• Pro-Am: Plowman; 2nd, Jan Denikiewicz of Garmisch; 3rd, Ewa Denikiewicz of Garmisch.

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