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Surgeon on slope saves the day

John Carbaugh's day took an unusual turn, even for a slalom skier, at Buffalo Ski Club last Sunday.

The 10-year-old from Orchard Park was competing in the J-V division (ages 9-10) for the Kissing Bridge Ski Team at the final event in the Niagara Frontier Ski Council season.

Martha Beyer, the chairman of the Niagara Frontier Ski Council and a coach at HoliMont, said in an e-mail that John "often concentrates so hard when he's skiing that his tongue is often hanging out of his mouth."

After his first run, John went with friends to the terrain park where he had a small mishap and bit his tongue. The cut was so deep it seemed Carbaugh wouldn't be able to take his second run.

Enter Patrick Scott, a spectator and oral surgeon who carries an emergency kit with him. So with parents and other racers watching, he put John on a picnic table outside -- the weather was sunny -- and stitched up the wound.

Undaunted, John went out and tied Joseph Mergl, a Holiday Valley racer from Noto, Ont., for first place in the slalom race. To see a YouTube video of John's day, see www.youtube.com/watch?v=YhddUBH9dKo.

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The Red Bull Buttercup series visits Holiday Valley today for its final Eastern stop.

Red Bull has built a butterpad for this competition that Holiday Valley will get to keep. Participants will be judged on how much style they exhibit on the multi-featured pad.

The event includes pro and amateur divisions. Registration for the amateur division is free and $10 for the pro division. There are prizes and berths in the Red Bull Buttercup Finals at Mount Snow, Vt., on Feb. 28.

Registration starts at 4 p.m. with practice at 6 p.m. and the competition at 6:45. For information, check out www.redbullbuttercup.com.

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The Buffalo Ski Club will host the M&T Bank Corporate Ski Challenge to benefit the Children's Growth Foundation of Buffalo on Feb. 27 in its Sitzmarker Lodge off of Lower East Hill Road.

The sixth annual event features competitive racing for corporate teams and individuals and non-competitive skiing.

The entry fee for teams of three is $300 and includes ski passes, race entry, lunch, the postrace dinner buffet and entertainment. Individuals intending to race pay $125 or $75, depending on if they want to compete.

For information, contact The Ski Challenge office at 844-7304 or go to www.buffaloskichallenge.com.

e-mail: fdoyle@buffnews.com

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