After under training, but giving myself the false perception that I can still compete at a high level (relatively), my body is hating me right now as my attempt to race 50km marathon backfired big time yesterday. If you wanted a great example of the waterfall effect, I gave a great demonstration yesterday. But let’s get onto the interesting stuff…
It’s been a whole eight days since the World Cup season came to a close and not a lot has happened since. Some athletes (who knew Jönsson and Haag were a couple? Not I.) have already packed the skis away for a couple weeks for some relaxation and recovery after the long season, but the large majority still had races to attend to, most notably, year end national championships were being held in the Røros, Norway; Fairbanks, Alaska; Syktyvkar, Russia; Kontiolahti, Finland; Horní Mísecky, Czech Republic; and Hinterzarten, Germany. You can find the results here.
One of the biggest news pieces came from Sweden where Gunde Svan decided not to
renew his contract as the head coach. His contract expires on June 30th. Rumours have it that Inge Bråten might be brought in as a new sprint coach before Svan leaves his position, but at this point that is all speculation.
The FIS are also making strides to to change the 4 year cycle by adding another World Championship in the third year of the four year cycle. Currently, three of the four years have major competitions; the first year has the Olympics, the second year has World Championship, the third year has nothing, then the fourth year has another World Championship. The argument is that the “down year” gives the athletes no real incentive or motivation. However, with the recent introduction of the Tour de Ski this has been changed but some think it is still not enough. Nothing is set in stone yet, but if the decision is improved, the new World Championship will be introduced in the 2012 calendar season.
In Norway, the ski federation their is already looking towards the next season and has named next years all-round and sprint teams. The biggest change comes from the veteran Vibeke Skofterud being dropped from the women’s team. Three others athletes were dropped from the women’s allround team including, Stemland, Nilsen, and Elden. Personally, I didn’t even realize that these three were even on the team in the first place as they rarely made any World Cup appearances. This means that the women’s all-round team is only six athletes next year which is rather small for a nation such as Norway.
On the men’s side of the equation, there were no changes which is surprising as Østensen and Eilifsen both got to stay on the team. Østensen failed to make a single World Cup appearance this season and Eilifsen entered only hit the starting wand three times on the world stage and failed to break the top 30 in any race. I’m obviously not seeing something the selection committee has.
Lastly, a couple days ago Canada was given great news as the FIS awarded Canada World Cup stops through to 2013 and possibly to the 2015-2016 season with possible Tour de Ski concept in one season occuring in Canada. There are more details in the article that can be found here.
Now that spring has sprung, it’s time for me to go play in the sun.
Til Next Time.