In an effort to showcase the North Americans competing at this week’s International Ski Federation (FIS) 2017 USANA Nordic Junior World Championships and U23 Cross Country World Championships at Soldier Hollow in Midway, Utah, we asked those qualifying athletes several questions about themselves — actually, we had them fill in the blanks. Here we have 19-year-old Lance McKenney, who trains independently in Cody, Wyo., and is representing the U.S. at his first Junior Worlds.
On Monday in his Junior Worlds debut, McKenney qualified in 29th the classic sprint and placed 20th overall. “I had an unfortunate crash in the qualifier so I was disappointed to qualify so low, but also thankful to still sneak into the rounds,” he wrote in an email afterward. “My goal coming into worlds was to get a top 20 so I’m thankful I achieved that in the rounds. Overall I’m satisfied with the sprint as it was my first international race experience.”
McKenney was a listed as one of four U.S. men’s starters in Wednesday’s 10 k freestyle.
“My full name is Lance McKenney, but you can call me Lance. I was born in Fort Fairfield, Maine, and one thing you should know about my hometown is it’s almost in Canada.
I started cross-country skiing when I was four, thanks to Tom Towel. I currently train in Cody, Wyo., with Daniel Streinz.
If I’m not skiing, you might find me watching Netflix, bouldering, exploring, or in the grey area of the law. If I had to pick a favorite book, it would be ‘With Winning in Mind’ or ‘The Shining’.
One of the things I’m most excited about for Junior Worlds at Soldier Hollow is international race experience. One race I’m especially targeting there is the classic sprint.
The best advice anyone ever gave me about skiing or racing was HTFU. One of the best race memories I have is winning the BKL Festival with my buddy Kam.
If I could meet one World Cup skier, it would be Stina Nilsson.
If I don’t end up being a professional skier, I’ll probably be educated.
I’m missing zero days of school to be here, and my teachers are probably thinking, ‘He graduated.’
You can follow me on Instagram @lancemckenney.”