This is the second article in a mini-series that puts focus on the transition from junior to senior racer – often a difficult time in a young racers life.
Last year's Junior World Champion Chris Jespersen has beaten the seniors in the past. He is presently feeling good and hopes for a good season as first-year senior racer.
â€œIt’s going to be hard to compete with the seniors, but I’m looking forward to it. It’s very different from junior racing. I hope it works out (for me). I skied well against the seniors in some races last year, so there's hope.â€
He recalls winning a Norway Cup race at Stryn. He beat all the seniors, except those who skied World Cup that weekend.
Jespersen is the only one of last years juniors who qualified as a â€œfullâ€ member for one of the National Team affiliated (sponsored) teams. He is on the Development Team coached by Morten A. Djupvik.
Jespersen feels that he has taken a step forward from last year.
â€œIt should be possible to race well. I feel very good at the moment and have clearly improved. I feel stronger.â€
The only set back this summer was a â€œsprained handâ€ problem in June. No problems after that.Â The doctor thought at first that his hand was broken. His training dropped to 30-hours for the whole month of June. But the hand healed quickly and he is now counting on larger training dosages than in the past.
It’s hard to say exactly how large the increase will be.
â€œI’m not sure. I still owe the coach reports dating back a year or so.â€
Chris is a â€œskate expertâ€ and like skate training a lot — that’s reflected in training totals.
â€œI hardly did any classic rollerski session this summer. But I have done quit a bit of running and that’s a change from previous years — I hope it will help my classic racing.â€
Why did you run more?
â€œIt wasn’t really planned to be that way. I did some running sessions — enjoyed it and continued to run — It just happened.â€
He hopes to be consistently fast in skating this season. He is not very optimistic regarding the classic style and dislikes the increase in skiathlon/pursuit and mass-start races. The sprint finish is not his strength.
Jespersen will try to race fast in the first races and want to place among the top in the season premiere at Beitostolen in the middle of November. He feels confident that he will be select to race the World Cup races at the same site a week later.
â€œI’m going to do what I did last season prior to Beitostolen. I trained hard until it was one week before the races, then I took two days off and did easy training towards the racesâ€.