I returned from Lillehammer, NOR two days ago and will be here in Park City for a few weeks! Before we get to what comes next I want to talk about my World Cup experience in Lillehammer, NOR. I did not perform at my best which I was disappointed about but I learned a lot and got some great World Cup experience under my belt. To start the weekend off we had the qualification jump on last Friday. Of course it seemed as if the wind had followed us as we had an unfortunate tail wind during this round of competition. Between several delays and time changes we were able to get the round off. I did not place in the top 50 which I was kinda bummed about. However the next day we were supposed to have a team competition but again it was to windy and the had to cancel it. Meaning we raced off of the qualification jump that afternoon. Again I learned a lot about the process of picking the right cross country skis even when we are unable to test on the course before the race. Unfortunately I didn't make the right choice on Saturday but I have learned from it and hopefully will not do it again. The race was a hard one as the 2.5km loop in Lillehammer is a challenging course and I was glad to get a race on it under my belt. On Sunday the organizers chose to host another individual competition, however we were moved from the K123m down to the K90m hill. I put Saturday's competition in the past and focused on what I needed to do in order to have a better performance. In the competition round I had tailwind again but I had a slightly better jump. It was not my best but it was an improvement putting me in 48th place to start the XC race. On Sunday I made the right decision on my skis and our wax tecs produced some fast skis! I felt much better in the race, lighter on my feet and more explosive. I was able to ski with two different groups of skiers and gain some tactical experience on the World Cup level. I ended the day in 49th place which is not my best performance, however it was my first top 50 result on the World Cup and one must take positives from every competition.
Looking back on my two weeks spent with the World Cup team I have a lot of things to take away. I am very thankful to have been able to 'shadow' the veterans on our team. I was able to learn a lot from Bryan, Taylor, and Adam as they all have much more experience then I do. With the large amount of wind delays and rescheduling we went through I gained more insight on how I best 'turn it on' and 'turn it off.' Something that all three of my teammates mentioned was the fact that I gained a tremendous amount of experience in dealing with what they call 'The Art of Waiting.' Although I was not content with my performances, looking back on it I am glad I got the experience and I look forward to my next opportunity to perform at the level that I know I can.
After the competitions in Lillehammer I traveled back to Park City. I will be competing in a three day COC event this weekend starting tomorrow! I am very excited to have a chance to compete at what now feels like a home venue. From the National team it will be myself, Taylor, Ben, and Michael competing this weekend. Because we are hosting the competitions we are given 4 more quota spots which will be given to several other juniors who will get the opportunity to compete! I am very excited to see how everyone does as the WJC team will come from all the juniors (including myself) competing this weekend. There is a larger fight than past years for the WJC team and I am excited to see how everyone does! If you would like to check up on results before I update my website next week click here and then click on the Park City competition to see how we all do! It should be an exciting weekend of competition and I am looking forward to performing at my full capability!