Sovereign Lake Nordic Center’s annual Summer Ski camp from May 10-19 attracted the usual collection of hard-core skiers, a mixture of teams and day trippers who need a last fix of snow before the inevitable arrival of summer. With the city of Vernon already in full-summer mode in the valley below, Sovereign’s weeklong camp is the last chance for set tracks in the region.
Chandra Crawford recently confirmed that she will not train with Canadian Ski Team this summer, but rather with a personal coach in an effort to peak at the 2014 Winter Olympics. If all goes according to plan, she’ll be back with the squad this winter. World Cup coach Eric de Nys weighs in and explains the state of his team.
Vermont biathlete Tara Geraghty-Moats spent the year training at a Swedish ski gymnasium, with the goal of improving her shooting thanks to full-time coaching; it paid off with a win in the junior sprint at Swedish Championships. In a month, she’ll move back to the U.S. to train with Algis Shalna and focus on the next World Juniors in Presque Isle, Maine.
After a successful demo in the small Alaskan village of Kiana last year, former national team biathlete Zach Hall coordinated an effort to introduce biathlon to six villages this year as part of Lars Flora’s NANANordic program. For kids in the villages, the combination of skiing and hunting just makes sense; for the athlete coaches, it was the experience of a lifetime.
Looking back on last season, anyone who watched Johan Olsson ski away from the pack and win the 50 k classic mass start at World Championships would be hard-pressed to forget it. Other inspiring performances include Marit Bjørgen’s 30 k win, Therese Johaug’s Holmenkollen domination, Petter Northug’s individual-start victory, and Alexander Legkov making history at the Tour de Ski.
Following the U.S. Ski Team’s announcement of its 2013-2014 nominations, cross-country head coach Chris Grover discussed reasoning behind the major changes to the roster, which left off three men and for the first time in two years did not include a development tier. “This is a performance organization and at the end of the day the athletes have to be judged on their performances,” Grover said.
The U.S. Ski Team formally announced its 2013-2014 nominations on Monday, and seven women in total were named to the squad. In contrast to the men’s team there were no cuts, and the addition of Sophie Caldwell reflects an expected expansion of the U.S. women’s World Cup quota by one more spot in both distance in sprinting.
At just 22 years of age, both Sophie Caldwell and Scott Gow competed in their first World Championships. A skier for SMS T2, Caldwell made several sprint quarterfinals on the World Cup this year, including placing 20th at World Champs. Gow contributed big to the Canadian biathlon team, finishing 31st in the 20 k individual at senior Championships, where he was also the youngest competitor to qualify for the pursuit.