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Swix's simple secrets to West Yellowstone waxing success

Fri, Dec  3, 2010 - By Andrew Gerlach

Chris Hall brushing skisChris Hall (photo), director of US Racing Services for Swix states, "Waxing for the West Yellowstone USSA SuperTour events was straightforward but not West Yellowstone normal. As we do for each race we tested a matrix of CH, LF, and HF base gliders based on temp and humidity. Once we had chosen the base wax we re-waxed and zeroed the test skis with the chosen base and tested if Cera-F over-layers increased the speed. A final test determined structure."

"For the first two races we could not conduct speed trap tests or run outs because the snow was too deep and tracks inconsistent so we conducted double blind feel tests on matched and zeros test skis. For the final event we were able to conduct run out and blind feel tests for glide as well as testing kick wax on Saturday’s Classic race."

Testing each day proved what coaches using just the Swix wax charts suggested: that CH4 or LF4 should be the base wax for most. FC78 SuperCera was the call as a final layer on 2 out of the 3 days. This was surprising to some as we were in “cold and dry West Yellowstone where Cera-F does not run well”. But this visit to West did not produce clear bluebird skies, but rather low hanging high-humidity clouds. A hand pressed .3mm broken-V structure improved most cold skis glide, further enforcing the argument that moisture management was important even though we were in West. Detailed Glide and Kick recommendations can be seen at

What were the Secrets to Success in West? - Keeping it simple by looking at Snow Crystal Structure, Temp and Humidity and not trying to win the race in the wax room with some a complex mixture of waxes.

APU’s Eric Flora states "Since its inception over a decade ago we have developed and implemented a stringent wax testing and wax application procedure that allows us to deliver consistently fast skis. The key is to keep it simple. At APU we focus on one line of wax. This process produces very good to great skis each race day and provides the athletes the confidence they need to produce the quality results they have trained for. Using the complete Swix line allows us to understand exactly where temperature and humidity fit into the complete Swix waxing matrix and gives me the confidence that I will deliver top skis to my athletes.” APU has 4 women in top 6 and 5 men in the top 10 of USSA SuperTour with a waxing process that relies on simplicity of the comprehensive Swix waxing matrix.

Swix’s complete wax matrix takes the guesswork out of waxing by creating a specific wax for each snow condition. If you know the air temp, relative humidity you can select Swix’s perfect wax no mixing, magic recipes, stressing or slow skis required.