Racing team updates

Junior racing team December 2015.

Breaking News, this is just in. Noah is racing in Canmore, its Tuesday, December 8th. This after already having done 2 races with a rest day on the weekend, altitude acclimatization, a week's training and travel before that. A Georgian Nordic skier on snow for the first time after a short 3 days of skiing on snow at home on Kinsmen fields, racing at a Canada Cup, better knows as a Noram, the highest level of racing in North America.  2 more races in Sovereign coming up, stay tuned.

December 8. Noah Thompson, Classic sprint day. Demands are not only about top speed, but having to repeat that 4 times throughout the day requires a season of preparation, a big engine, extreme focus, changing tactics on the fly, and a top notch technical support team:

"Hi Peter,
 
I feel gassed. My legs are so tired. My body in general feels good but my legs are done. Raining and snowing made for some cold, wet condition so that sapped some energy as well. 
 
Big day today! One of my best results ever and I took down some quick skiers. Qualifier was alright, lost huge amounts of time in one specific section which we did twice. Steep pitch of striding after a long gradual stride section. I had trouble upping the tempo. Quarter went well, super slow off the start and was probably 10 seconds off the leaders but I pulled up with them, went by one and closed hard to get the lucky loser. Semi was very good, again slow off the start, losing time on the one section and was actually in 6th by a lot. Caught and blew through 2 skiers in the straight to try and snag the lucky loser again. Really wanted that a final. Ended up missing it but crushed the b final, finally figured out the one troubling section, got out of the track on it, still got gapped by the leader but skied in second until the finishing straight where I took it again. Skied quite relaxed, letting that gap open that I knew I could close in the straight. Tactically very good. Quite happy with the day and result. 
 
On a note, my skis were incredible. By far the best skis I have ever had in comparison to the field. I was able to close massive gaps (5-10 seconds) on the downhill into the finish and then gap skiers on the sprint. Huge shout to Lief and Lisa for the skis. Both Patrick McIlroy (today's winner) and myself had great skis due to them and used it to the advantage by kicking hard in the straight. Ski selection was very good too. 

Huge thank you to yourself as well as everyone at home! It's days like this that make all the terrible ones seem like nothing. The speed was there in my b final especially and I'm excited to hammer it again in a few days."

Noah coming into the stadium straightawayNoah coming into the stadium straightaway

Just about everything is going the way its planned. Ya. That never happens in the real world. Our skiers, however are pretty darn close right now. Our 16 junior skiers are working hard to make it all work, the biggest challenge is to keep on doing something for this sport that is supposed to be on snow by now.
Well, we did have a brief period of the wonderful stuff, for 3 days.
 So what does a coach do when a skier asks:"Are we going to groom a trail at Kinsmen, we'll bring a machine, you bing the groomer". Yes.

So the story goes. The machine comes off the trailer, an unnamed parent is trying to help his son to ski . A couple town workers show up to change a light bulb. Geez, who needs a light bulb at that hour, duh. "No, stop, we do not want snowmachines here", with a pretty stern voice. A short discussion ends with a phone call to the town office. "no" was the reply.  Ah, sorry. We shall pull this baby by hand. So we did. At first it did not seem to work that well, but the skiers had the trail packed in no time, with their skis. A great team moment. That is why they joined the team, right?

 
High school training started a few weeks ago. A great way for some of our skiers to build more consistency into their training schedule and extend their choice for racing. They now have 2 up to 4 days of structured training, that is pretty cool.
First race is December 17 in Hardwood with the school team, if there is snow. So that is a big if right now. Our first big club team event will be the Eastern Canadian Championships in Ottawa, in early February.
Shaylynn and Malcolm went on snow in Foret Montmorency in Quebec, as part of their qualification as Ontario  talent squad members in mid November. Its snow they covered in March with sawdust. They bring it back out for early season training and one race, a great trail with 2 ' of snow over 2km of undulating trail. Hard to come home after that to be skiing on grass. Transition to on snow skiing is fun, transition back to training on asphalt and gravel not so much.
 
 
Our annual waxing fundraiser went pretty well. 24 pairs were cleaned and prep waxed with 2 layers by 10 of our skiers in about 3 hours time. Including a couple donation, thank you very much, we are ahead 650 dollars.
Ben and Shaylynn scraping and polishing skisBen and Shaylynn scraping and polishing skis
 
Noah is in Canmore, Alberta right now. He is competing at 5 races over 2 weeks with Team Ontario. Noah qualified for this during his last racing season, he earned this trip. He placed 16th in his first race, classic interval start on Saturday, December 5, he bettered that December 6 in a mass start skate race to 14th. Sprint race on Tuesday, stay tuned for that. 2 more races after that in Sovereign, also known by many as Silverstar, near Vernon BC, the following weekend.
 
Noah on the far right. Georgian Nordic race suit is all we could getNoah on the far right. Georgian Nordic race suit is all we could get 
There are many firsts for a skier like Noah leaving town to compete at a Canada Cup Noram, without his usual race support. No team members, no family, unfamiliar race venue, high pressure race atmosphere with total focus on results.  Noah understands better now that a less than what he wanted result has to do, he will move on. So he does.. He will be a better skier when he comes home, more resilient. Speed on snow comes from many hours of training at quality.
 Up the hill at Kinsmen, the boys plyometric repeats.Up the hill at Kinsmen, the boys plyometric repeats.
 
Lindsay and Lauren are recovering from injuries and are well on the way back to include intensity again. Matjaz will be back soon as well, he is recovering with a cast on.
Lauren, Sasha, Shaylynn, Lindsay, and Kate ski walkingLauren, Sasha, Shaylynn, Lindsay, and Kate ski walking Shayna is helping to build a varsity ski team with a University in Ottawa.  Katie Madden got a job with Faster skier, she is contributing to online World Cup stories, she is on Skype with our athletes interviewing them. Cool.
Our younger juniors are well on the way to try a lot of new physical and technical challenges, dryland for now.
Long slow distance is not all that easy to do mentally, but boy they are proud of it after they have done it. Its a real genuine proud.
A bit tired. Left to right Erika, Liam, Nick, Ban, and EthanA bit tired. Left to right Erika, Liam, Nick, Ban, and Ethan
Wednesday we shall do what they do in a World Cup classic sprint on snow. Our skiers are tough, they can do all that on grass. Run with skis on, up a hill, heringbone style.
 
Lauren and Sasha checking the grass skisLauren and Sasha checking the grass skis
Looking forward to see all of them making a successful transition to snow, soon.

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