Regardless, I had a successful weekend with two good hard efforts to chalk up to experience. The first day, the classic sprint, is a format I am usually decent at. With a longer and more difficult course this year, it truly separated the men from the boys, and unfortunately I was out-classed on this epic course on the day. I skied it pretty much as well as I could have, so I am happy with that.
The distance race was a revelation, as I was able to turn around a near-bonk on the 2nd lap, into a composed 3rd lap by simply adjusting a normal race breathing pattern, into a new and faster rate that I normally cannot maintain. I went for it and it worked out. The payoff was my best Silver Star distance race ever. I was by no means in the fight for the W, coming in at 39th place in a large and deep field, but the race was fun for me on a day with difficult conditions when others were hating life at certain points. Its funny, I keep having these feelings lately where I sense that a good distance race performance is just around the corner...
Warming up for head to head heat racing on Saturday in the 1.4 km Classic Sprint.
Rounding the corner at the bottom of the new bridge at Sovereign Lake Nordic Centre. I skied my quarter final pretty much as best I could and conserved as much energy as possible for the final push to the line, but unfortunately was dispatched by some better finishing kicks.
Our Silver Star trip ended with a highly contested game of pond hockey. As my 3rd time on ice with a hockey stick, I am confident in saying that I can now somewhat handle a puck from time to time. Luckily I wasn't too out of place in terms of skill level.
This weekend we are in Rossland, BC for the next stop on the NorAm series. This weekend is a mini-tour style event, with 3 races happening from Friday to Sunday. There is a skate sprint on Friday followed by a 10 km skate and a 15 km classic pursuit-style on Sunday based on Saturday's results.
Today we skied up at the Paulson trails up and over the mountain pass near Rossland instead of at Black Jack. Up at the higher altitude trailhead we were met with new snow and freshly groomed tracks on narrow, winding trails - perfect for a meandering 30 km distance ski.