I am back at my parents' house in Salmon Arm after a busy two weeks of travel and racing. I returned from Europe and jumped right back into the NorAm domestic racing circuit 5 days later.
I spent a couple days recovering from travel then joined the Academy in Vernon for the Sovereign NorAms on December 10 and 11. It was great to see my team again and catch up with everyone after a month away.
Saturday was a classic sprint. I felt surprisingly peppy in the qualifier and got the fastest time of the day. In the final heat I died in the last section and had to settle for 2nd behind American superstar Jessie Diggins. Sunday was a 10km classic individual. I felt a bit flat from the efforts of the previous day though I felt better as the race progressed. I finished in 7th, but was the top Canadian.
|Sprint qualifier. Photo: Peter Collins|
We packed up the vans on Tuesday and drove down to Rossland, BC for another weekend of races.I had a slump mid-week and was tired going into the sprints on Saturday. I qualified in 4th but felt better and better as the heats went on and was able to steal 2nd spot in a sprint to the finish, once again behind Jessie. Sunday was the last race before the holidays: a 10km skate mass start. It was a fun race as I was skiing in a pack of 3-5 girls most of the time. Jessie took off in the first kilometer and I was in the chase pack. The first two laps of the 3.3 km course were tough and I was yo-yoing off the back. By the last lap I was feeling good and had enough gas to sprint the last kilometer and secure 2nd spot.
Here is the sprint podium. I'm wearing the bright new One-Way team parka.
I am quite happy with how the last two weekends went. I was worried I would be fatigued coming back from Europe and dealing with jet-lag but I seemed to bounce back fairly quickly. Overall, I think it was an advantage to have an extra month of racing under my belt as I raced better than I ever have in December.
After 6 straight weekends of tough races and time trials I am ready for a bit of a break. I am spending Christmas at my parents' house with easy training. I took advantage of an easy day and did a slow 20km ski on some of the ungroomed trails at Larch Hills yesterday with my family and some family friends. It was fun getting off the groomed trails and we had a great day.
I head back to Canmore on the 27th and plan to put in a good training block. My next race will be NorAms in Whistler in early January.
Don't forget to put out your stockings tonight!