Welcome to “17 Questions for 2017″, where we are catching up with American and Canadian national-team members before the beginning of the winter season.
23-year-old Knute Johnsgaard has been all over Canada, as far as skiing goes: from his family home in the Yukon to the Centre Nationale d’Entrainment Pierre Harvey in Quebec back to the Whitehorse to join the Yukon Elite Squad, then to the Alberta World Cup Academy, and onto the Cross-Country Canada’s senior development team.
Johnsgaard capped off last season by making the World Cup sprint heats in the Ski Tour Canada stage held in Gatineau, then finishing on the podium in the 10 k classic at Canadian National Championships.
1. Biggest change in your life in the last five or so months since the ski season ended?
I moved to a new house in Canmore.
2. Biggest change in your training?
New National Team coach as well as a new AWCA coach.
3. Major areas of improvement you’ve seen so far?
4. Whom you’ve been working closest with this offseason (coaches or training partners)?
I’ve had a lot more opportunities to train with my teammates on the National Team.
5. Best trip in the last five months (and why)?
My hunting trip in the Yukon. So much of my life evolves around skiing; it’s nice to have a change of scenery, chasing sheep around in remote Yukon mountain ranges.
6. Favorite cross-training?
7. Favorite non-athletic activity or pastime this summer?
My sourdough starter.
8. Song that was your jam this summer?
Gearing up to go roller skiing with Soulja Boy’s “Turn My Swag On”.
9. All time favorite race moment?
Scoring my first points in the sprint in Gatineau at the Ski Tour Canada.
10. First thing you pack in your bag when you leave for Europe?
Snacks for the plane.
11. Venue/event you’re most excited to visit this season?
12. Who will win the World Cup title this year?
If I were to guess, [Heidi] Weng for the women, [Martin Johnsrud] Sunby for the men.
13. Biggest sacrifice you feel you’ve made choosing this career path?
Nothing that can’t wait. I’d be sacrificing much more if I hadn’t pursued skiing.
14. If you could change one thing about your sport, what would it be?
I wish North America shared the same appreciation of our sport as Scandinavia.
15. What did you have for breakfast this morning?
16. In 5 years, I’ll be ____?
17. In 50 years, I’ll be ____?
Chelsea Little is FasterSkier's Editor-At-Large. A former racer at Ford Sayre, Dartmouth College and the Craftsbury Green Racing Project, she is a PhD candidate in aquatic ecology in the @Altermatt_lab at Eawag, the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology in Zurich, Switzerland. You can follow her on twitter @ChelskiLittle.