Notes and Quotes from the Showdown

Audrey ManganNovember 24, 2011


Diggins suffering after her classic victory.

With four separate races run in West Yellowstone on Wednesday, there was a lot going on. Here are bits and pieces of what didn’t make the official race report cut:

On Getting the Season Started

“At the start of the season you never quite know where you’re at, it takes a bit of time to get into the race season. We typically try to have our athletes start in good shape.” Chris Jeffries, Alberta World Cup Academy coach

On the Uniquely Hilly Course

We talked with Chief of Competition David Robinson just prior to the start of the classic sprint about new features on the sprint course. Due to technical difficulties, we weren’t able to upload this interview before the start of the race, but here it is now (apologies for the gradual lens-fogging):

“It is definitely different to finish off a sprint with a climb like that. The first half of that climb — that new bench (a newly-cut, more gradual trail up the first part of the final hill) is a really nice sprint climb…It’s a Tour de Ski [final climb]-style at the top; you just get over the line before you fall over.” Reese Hanneman, APU

“I liked [the uphill finish], it was good, hard. I like V1 though.” Brian Gregg, CXC

On Equipment Failures

“Sometimes that lights a positive fire under my butt, even if I don’t feel it at the time. Perhaps [losing a basket] gave a boost of adrenaline.” Jennie Bender, CXC

On Returning to Racing after a Serious Head Injury

“I feel a little behind on training after missing two months. All of my time trials this fall have been a couple of seconds behind last year’s times…Mentally I’m a little behind, but physically…” Reid Pletcher, CU

On Appreciating Your Crew

“I’m so impressed with the waxing. We’re not one-man bands, any of us. I’m just so impressed with our coaches; waking up at 5:00 am must be so fun!” Jessie Diggins, CXC

On Jumping in His First Classic Race in Four Years

U.S. Ski Team Nordic Combined B-teamer Nick Hendrickson competed in both sprint races on Wednesday — the classic race was his first time competing in the discipline in “four or five years.” He ended up in 36th in the classic and 37th in the freestyle. Check out this interview with him at the end of the day:

Audrey Mangan

Audrey Mangan (@audreymangan) is an Associate Editor at FasterSkier and lives in Colorado. She learned to love skiing at home in Western New York.

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