It’s back! In an effort to showcase the North Americans competing at next week’s International Ski Federation (FIS) 2018 Nordic Junior/U23 World Championships in Goms, Switzerland, we asked those qualifying athletes several questions about themselves — actually, we had them fill in the blanks. Here we have 20-year-old Julia Kern, of the Stratton Mountain School (SMS) T2 Team and U.S. Ski Team Development Team, who’s representing the U.S. at her first U23 Worlds (she’s been to Junior Worlds the last three years and earned bronze last year in the women’s relay at Soldier Hollow).
“My full name is Julia Kern.
I was born in Berkeley, California, and raised in Waltham, Massachusetts, and I learned to ski in Germany.
I spent my time before U23 Worlds in Germany with my family and on the World Cup circuit.
The most fun workout I did in the last training year to prepare for this year was crust cruising in New Zealand with my U.S Ski Team teammates as well as my SMS T2 teammates.
This is at least my fifth time in Switzerland and I don’t even know how many times racing internationally, and so far it’s been incredible!
One difference I’ve noticed between Switzerland and the U.S. is that they speak four different languages in Switzerland.
Skiing and racing in the Alps is beautiful! Usually racing at altitude is okay for me because even though I don’t feel good racing at altitude, I have had some strong results at altitude. There are no big mountains around where I live.
One of the things I’m most excited about for Junior/U23 Worlds in Goms is racing with my teammates and good friends, and having an awesome staff here working super hard to help us achieve our goals!
One race I’m especially targeting there is the skate sprint.
I really hope I can chat/make friends with someone from Sweden and ask them what they do for training.
My favorite thing at the breakfast where we are staying is the fresh eggs and good Swiss cheese.
Fondue is yummy. The cheese here is delicious. And the chocolate is tasty.
If I had a totally free day here and didn’t have to worry about race fitness or training, I’d spend it backcountry skiing.
The best way to follow me on social media is on Instagram @juliakernski.”