XCFeedsRace #1: West Yellowstone 1.4K Classic Sprint

FasterSkier FasterSkierNovember 25, 2009

For our first official race as a team and ensuing report, we’ll try a collaborative blog. Following is an account from each of us on how the race went. Enjoy!divbr //divdivSam’s race:/divdivAfter three days here in West Yellowstone, at an altitude of ~6500ft, and with hundreds of fellow skiers and racers milling about, the excitement and anticipation is palpable. We of MOD decided to ease into the week and have only skied about 3 or 4 hours total since arriving, which meant that this morning we were absolutely raring to go. The first race of the season was a 1.4k classic sprint qualifier, meaning that instead of the usual sprint format where a qualifier leads to several heats to determine the overall winner, they just run one interval-start race and the winner of that is the day’s champion. The course was not a usual sprint course: instead of the steep ups and downs that most sprint courses have, this one was basically a gentle uphill grade the entire way, with a few short downhills. Rather unimaginative. Anyways, I warmed up as usual and tried not to let the nervousness of the upcoming race get to me. I knew my fitness was high and my potential equally high, but both were untested in a race situation. /divdivbr //divdivI got to the start and prepared myself. My warmup had been decent but I opted not to do a few short intervals during it, fearing that I would over-work myself. That, I believe, turned out to be a mistake. Out of the start I scrambled hard and settled into a quick double pole. Coming into the first downhill corner I realized the tracks were not the best place to be, and stepped out just in time to get to the outside of the corner and check my speed on the icy tracks. I wobbled into the ensuing uphill and double poled hard. This sequence was repeated on the next short downhill. I was feeling decent but I could already tell my usual snap was not there; I was forcing things. On the one hill that was worth of striding I sought to stretch my foot forward and settle into a nice long powerful stride. I missed the first few kicks and struggled to get upright. Finally doing so, I really tried to relax into it, and crossed the line knowing I had missed a good finish. The racer who started directly behind me (15sec intervals) crossed right after me, meaning I had lost almost 15 seconds to him. That solidified my fear that the race was not to be my best. /divdivbr //divdivIt was the first race of the season, and there are many more to come. Because of our anticipation and belief in our fitness it’s tough to know it was a poor race for me, but having experienced many ups and downs in my skiing career thus far I know I can turn things around. Next race is Saturday; time to make it happen./divdivbr //divdivErik’s race:/divdivThe first race of the season is over. I ended up 35th overall and second junior. I didn’t feel really good, but I’m sure most people out there didn’t. I started out at a conservative pace thinking that I would try to build into it. The second hill into the race was a striding hill, my plan was to really put it down on this hill. It defiantly didn’t happen, my weight was back and I wasn’t able to really get into a good rhythm. Now I’m just looking forward to the distance classic race on Saturday./divdivbr //divdivbr //divdivSadie’s Race:/divdivAfter just seeing the results list, I am feeling pretty good about my first race of the season. I wouldn’t say it was a strong race for me, but it is still early season. The past couple of weeks I have been struggling with feeling flat after a really hard week of training with a stressful week of recovery following. I finally got out yesterday for a ski that I was able to do some speed and train “hard” for the first time in a couple of weeks. I wasn’t expecting much from today, but just to get that “first race” out of the way. The course was different than most of the courses that I have raced in the past…fast downhill corners, lots of transitions, and longer than most sprint courses I have skied. I felt strong but not too snappy. I am assuming that will come as I start training again and feeling better. Today was a strong field with lots of top Canadians as well as many top US skiers. I took 10th place, 13.6 seconds out of the leader- a canadian skier. Considering how I felt racing, I am pleased with this result. I will be racing Saturday for a distance classic race next. With my first race of the season out of the way, I am looking forward to what will become of saturday. Until then….. Happy Thanksgiving./divdiv class=”blogger-post-footer”img width=’1′ height=’1′ src=’https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/2910103639238326543-7374575583379473681?l=methowolympicdevelopment.blogspot.com’ alt=” //div

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