Conditions matched what we expected when doing the wax tip. The only thing was that light snowfall fell sometimes, but didn’t affect conditions really and it didn’t accumulate at all. Being that there was so much sitting in a tuck on this course, ski speed played an even more central role. You had to have fast skis. Our glide wax tip was straight forward and held up well. For kick, it was more complicated as there were various conditions on the course. Parts were deep sugar snow, parts were sandy dirty mostly transformed snow, and parts were made up of a high degree of manmade snow. Our wax tip was for a super thick and short application (in multiple layers) of Base Green Binder. Simple as that. In testing, this solution went about as well as the best klister wax solutions. One team that had excellent results actually put klister on the front and back of the kick zone and thick Base Green in the middle. This was really intelligent as the “Straight Base Green” thing only works well when applied thick in this type of snow. The klister can go thinner on the ends of the kick zone without sacrificing speed, but enhancing kick. Due to the loose sugary nature of the snow, shearing was also a factor today in some areas of the course (where the snow breaks underfoot creating a slip even though the wax holds). For that reason, it was better not to have a really short wax zone. Others used Viola klister covered with Viola. In short, it seemed that there were a lot of solutions that yielded good results today. It seems as always that ski selection and matching the wax application to the ski camber and skier ability was the key component in having good skis.
Despite this being an “easy” course (there was no steep hill out there), evidently it was a challenging race as there were some really tired racers out there as well as an obvious selection. The 20 and 30k Skate races will be exciting for sure.
We are recommending a base of LF Blue followed by HF Blue followed by JetStream Blue and lastly followed by the Toko Structurite on Blue. It is supposed to get into the single digits tonight and hit a high of only 24F tomorrow. The snow has quite a bit of sand in it on the bottom. Dirt resistance will play a role tomorrow. The very hard waxes are not only durable but also very dirt resistant.
Just want to let you know that the glide wax Torin won the Nationals Sprint Race on was TOKO HF Yellow and HF Moly mix with Jet Stream Yellow block on top followed by Helix Yellow spray on top. I tested against products from all other brands and these won out all day long. All I did was brush out and reapply the spray between heats.
Scott Johnston, Head Coach. MOD
As the entire XC community made its way to Rumford, Maine for the 2011 US Championships many were surprised at what they found. The conditions were very thin and with the temps pushing into the 50’s it was only getting worse. The race organization was doing everything they could to keep a sprint track open but one thing was clear, nothing was going to be predictable.
When it comes to XC ski racing and especially sprint racing there are several variables, some controlled and others uncontrolled that need to be dealt with. You have such controlled variables, such as your wax, ski selection, warm-up, and course strategy. These are the things as a racer you must focus on and the beauty of this is it should all be part of a consistent unchanging routine. This routine is what will get you through the race day focusing on exactly what you can control. All to often, racers get caught up with the weather, track conditions, other racers, and the pressure of a major championship event. All of these you have absolutely no control over. What is the point in wasting your time and energy worrying over the weather, who you are racing against, who you are supposed to beat or not beat… Racing is simple, and all too often it will never be held under the ideal circumstance or the perfect conditions. This is why they hold the race, because things change and create unpredictability. So as this week moves on with an ever changing schedule, stay cool don’t fret, adapt and focus on your routine and let the chips fall where they may. You didn’t train all those long hard hours just to get derailed by a thin track or some warm weather.
Believe in your routine, we are creatures of habit, don’t change now.
Good luck and Ski Fast.
Chris Cook, Steinbock Racing