Race season is winding down quickly, Wednesday I raced the Drammen World Cup sprint and now I am back in Canada. There is only the World Cup finals left next weekend then a few races at Nationals. It’s crazy how quickly the season passes by. It doesn’t seem that long ago that I was boarding a plane in Calgary to head to Europe for the first races of the season.
Having been back in North America for January and then racing the U23 World Championships in Utah it split up my European travel nicely.
U23’s were a great event and it was exciting to see the talent coming up in Canada and be one of the leaders of the team instead of a youngster for once. I had my best international result in the sprint, qualifying 8th and finishing the day in 12th.
|In the pack during the 15km Skiathlon|
|U23 World Champs quarterfinal action|
From there I travelled back over to Europe to join the team and prepare for my first Senior World Championships. Leading up to World Championships we race a World Cup in Otepaa, Estonia. In the sprint I qualified 30th for the heats and finished 29th at the end of the day. This was my third top-30 result of the season, which means that I have now met the Olympic nomination criteria for the 2018 Winter Olympics.
|Bib number 1! Pretending it was a mass start not an individual start...|
|Sprint heats in Otepaa!|
|Otepaa sprint qualifier|
I left Otepaa feeling really excited and confident going into World Championships. Preparation went well and I was amped for the Sprint, the first race in Lahti. In my warm up my body was feeling heavy and once I got out on the race course I couldn’t find my usual form. I crossed the line feeling disappointed with my race before I even looked at the results. I placed 37th in my first World Championships race, not a bad result by any means but after having raced into the heat just 5 days earlier on the World Cup it was definitely a bit of a disappointment to not make the knock out rounds at World Champs. As the week went on I started to feel a bit better again with each race. I skied the team sprint with Cendrine, raced the 10km Classic, anchored our relay team to 10th place (best result since 2001) and finished off the championships by posting my best individual result of the week with a 34th place in the 30km Skate. The championships ended with the men’s 50km the last day. Since we were done racing we swapped out our race suits for our parkas and lined the course to cheer on our men. It was absolutely amazing to be there to watch my teammate Alex take the 50km gold and become World Champion.
|All the hugs|
|Thank you Whitehorse Cross Country Ski Club for the signed flag!|
|Best support team ever! Thank you all!!|
From Lahti I took a 3-day trip to Norway. I got to ski at Holmenkollen in Oslo and race the Drammen World Cup, which is a city sprint through the streets of Drammen Norway. It was a really fun race and I felt like I skied well. Unfortunately I came up a bit short of making the heats but I took full advantage of the day to stay and watch the heats and enjoy the amazing atmosphere. I think Drammen is my favourite WC venue of the season.
|Meeting Devon and Kristin's beautiful little girl Asta|
|Making friends in Norway!!|
|Sprint qualifier in Drammen!|
|The boys told me it's never sunny in Oslo, they were wrong, two days of beautiful sunny skiing!|
Now that I'm back Canada, I have a week to recover and train in Quebec before World Cup finals start March 17th!!!