See If You Can Name The Race In This Old Picture.

Hint: circa 1969.  Perhaps you know the name of the race this fellow is in and what makes it special. Put your best guess in the COMMENTS section below. Extra credit for naming an unusual chap who won the same race in earlier years and what the circumstances were.

Last Week

Credit: US Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame

This is Seattle-born and raised Deb Armstrong with a tennis racquet. Deb won the giant slalom at the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo, the first won to win a gold since Barbara Corcoran’s 1972 victory in Sapporo.

After her retirement from ski racing, Debbie Armstrong led various humanitarian causes, including the Debbie Armstrong Say No to Alcohol and Drugs campaign; the SKIFORALL Foundation, which opens skiing events to the disabled; and Global ReLeaf Sarajevo, which seeks to reforest Sarajevo after the Bosnian war. According to Wikipedia, Deb is an executive at Steamboat Springs. Here’s Debbie (right) waving the flag in 1984.

Below is a short video of Deb Armstrong giving powder skiing lessons at Steamboat Springs. Two very lucky kids get a very clear and effective lesson from a gold medal Olympian.  Perhaps you can learn something, too.





  1. Norm Reynolds says:

    Would this be the Tuckerman’s Ravine race?

  2. The Hahnenkamm is the race. Jean Claude won the earlier race due to a questionable disqualification against Karl Schranz?????

  3. Tom Federico says:

    This is Tony Matt in the Inferno at Tuckerman’s

  4. Susie Greer says:

    Tuckerman’s Ravine

  5. Kathleen Phillips says:

    I don’t think it’s the Hannenkamp. Sides of the race course look too rough. I’d go with Tuckerman’s Ravine. Have no idea who the skier is, tho.

  6. It is indeed the Inferno in Tuckerman Ravine (Note Tuckerman, not Tuckerman’s), won by Toni Matt in 1939 when he schussed the Headwall and took two minutes off the record. The race was not run again in fear that someone would die trying to beat Matt’s record. I believe Matt admitted that he mistook his place above the Headwall and failing to check his speed had not choice but to simply hang on. In 1969 when Mount Washington received over 500 inches of snow, the race was run again, organized by Al Risch, then director of the Wildcat Ski Patrol who guided skiers on the mountain for years. The 1969 version was a GS starting in the Easy Snowfields and ending on the floor of the Ravine. Each spring the race is part of an iron man endeavor to raise funds for Friends of Tuckerman Ravine an organization founded by Risch.
    Dave Irons

  7. tukerman’s revine

  8. Inferno Race in Tuckerman Ravine N H

  9. tucks inferno !!

  10. It was called the Inferno and the record setting run was by Toni Matt at Tuckerman Ravine. I was privileged enough one year to actually hear Toni’s account at the EMS Lodge in North Conway, New Hampshire. It was being recorded for the New England Ski Hall of Fame. He was quite a character.

  11. Hi Pat,
    Reread what I wrote. The original was run in the thirties with the last race won by Matt in 1939. It was run again in 1969, but not the whole length from the top and down the Sherburne. In 1969 it was a GS starting near the summit down the East Snowfields, over the Lip to a finish on the floor of the Ravine. I was there.
    Dave Irons

  12. Mike Bannon says:

    Dave Irons is spot on. This is the Inferno Race in Tuckerman Ravine. The photo, judging by the ski pole baskets and clothing, is however not 1969, but the earlier version in which Toni Matt became fameous. I think that Dick Durance finished 2nd to Toni Matt . The 1969 race was won I believe by Duncan Cullmam of Franconia NH. Same story as Dave……I was there and the bowl was packed

  13. It’s gotta be Tuckerman’s Ravine head wall judging by the pitch. Tony Matt (according to my late dad) was the only person to successfully “schuss” that crazy pitch. Never mind the rudimentary equipment of the day, if you managed to stay upright down the face the bottom was a narrow access road line with trees.

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