Christmas is only a few days away and we finally have some natural snow in the mountains! Right now I’m in my house in Canmore, sitting by the fire, drinking tea and munching on Christmas cookies! Tomorrow, I’m heading home to Athabasca to spend some time with my family and have fun skiing on my home trails.
The past few weeks have been a flurry of racing. I’ve done 9 races so far this year, which is pretty tiring as it turns out (but in a good way). The first two races were at the Alberta Cup in Canmore, where I came away with 1st and 3rd place finishes. They were both individual start distance races, which are always a fun way to start the season because during the race, all you have to do is focus on yourself instead of thinking about tactics or strategy.
I was really happy to start off the season with some solid races, and was especially happy to have no problems digging deep into the “pain cave”. I also got to cheer on the Athabasca Nordic team at the AB Cup which was so much fun– there were 9 young racers who came down for the races!
After the Alberta Cup, I headed to Silver Star, B.C., with Patrick for the first weekend of NorAm races. We went earlier than our ski teams, which meant we had an extra day to go for a fun ski around the mountain and enjoy the sauna at the Nakkertok house!
The races there were a lot of fun this year because they were also US SuperTour races, which meant that a lot of American athletes came up to race! During the classic sprint, I cracked the top 10 in the qualifier, but unfortunately was knocked out early in the heats and didn’t get a chance to fight it out in the final. In the skate distance race, I finished farther back on the results sheet than I was hoping for, but pushed really hard and was happy with my effort.
After the Silver Star NorAm, I headed with RMR to Rossland, B.C. for the “Mini Tour”. Mini Tours are a lot of fun, because each day’s result affects your start position on the final day. They are also great opportunities to practice racing multiple days in a row! Overall, I was happy with my racing, particularly in the skate sprint, where I qualified 3rd and finished 5th. On long the drive back from Rossland, we stopped for our traditional post-December racing A&W run (trust me, skiers like the occasional fast food meal too… especially after several weeks of hard racing!).
In less than two weeks, I’ll be here for a week before heading to Quebec for Olympic and U23 World Championship trials. It’s both exciting and nerve-wracking to think that trials are almost here, but I’m looking forward to racing and can’t wait to see what happens!
Merry Christmas & Happy Skiing!