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Cote Dame Marie Loppet – What’s With the Crazy Name?

Fri, Feb  12, 2010 - By Chris Jones

The Grayling Recreation Authority has conducted a cross country ski race at the Hanson Hills Recreation Area for more than 30 years. In recent years the race has gained a reputation for excellent grooming and beautiful trails. This year we would like to step the event up a bit. Features for the 2010 race include the following.

  • Rolling course through scenic hardwoods
  • Outstanding grooming
  • Chip timing - immediate and accurate results
  • Michigan Cup Division - 30 k freestyle Michigan Cup points event
  • Free Friday night kids race - 2 kilometer lighted course
  • Citizens Race Division - For those new to racing, a 15 k with both freestyle and classic categories
  • Custom gift to the first 250 entrants
  • Post race Awards Banquet/Buffet dinner at the Ramada Inn included in entry fee

The "Cote Dame Marie" name comes from a hill range located on the Hanson State Game Refuge/Camp Grayling Military Reservation and has WWI significance. In 1918 the German army’s last line of defense was the Hindenburg Line. The key to breaking the German line were two hills – the Cote Dame Marie and the Cote de Chatillion. The Michigan 126th Regiment found a gap in the barb wire fortifications but was pinned down by German machine gun fire. Captain Edward Strom then led seven men to find another gap. After finding a gap they attacked up a steep hill in a single rush without loss of life. A full assault followed and the Hindenburg line was pierced.

For a complete schedule of events and further information, visit the Cote Dame Marie website at graylingnordic.com. Race Date: February 20, 2010