Monday, September 1, 2014

Rollerski races, Craftsbury, and the Beginning of Lake Placid

Lots has happened since my last post so ill try not to leave out any details...   First of all there were the August rollerski races in Jericho, Vermont. These were the first two of four races to determine who will fill the last World Cup start spot come November. Unfortunately I don't think that it is going to be me filling the start spot. I struggled in the range both days making it nearly impossible to place well. The first day was a sprint race where my misses were 2,1 prone then standing. The second day was a mass start and was defiantly one of the most fun mass start races I have ever done, at least for the first loop, the entire US and Canadian national teams were racing so there were 25 racers who were all actually good. On the first lap I was right in the middle of the pack being sucked along, this lap was 45 seconds faster then any other lap and I hardly went out of my L3 zone. After this things started to go downhill my shooting misses were 2,3,3,1. Despite sub-par shooting I was pleased with my ski speed, over the summer I have been doing more intensity so that I can ski faster in August for these races, which I have not done in past years, I was able to accomplish that. I think that my lack of shooting performance was due to not enough mental preparation and focus something that I have struggled with in non snow races in the past and something I could improve on as well.  One thing that was really cool about these races was that other then when the occasional World Cup comes this race had the highest and deepest level of competition of any race that will take place in North America. 

Starting the sprint race 
First lap of the mass start race 

After the races in Jericho I traveled to Craftsbury, Vermont for my second national team training camp, which I really enjoyed. At the camp was my fellow B-team member Russell as well as some of the X/development team and some of the top athletes not on the national team. This created a really good group and we were able to do some very productive training.  At the camp we were coached by Jean Paquet who is the new USBA development coach. I really enjoyed working with him, I like his coaching style and I think he has lot of valuable coaching to offer, hopefully USBA allows me to continue to work more with him more in the future. Our main focus fore the camp was on shooting, we did lots of drills, relays, and games creating a competitive shooting environment.  This is one aspect of training I have been lacking in for most of the summer, I was training mostly by myself and its hard to do a one man relays, hopefully I will continue to get more similar opportunities like this. 

Some other highlights of Craftsbury were the Barton County Fair demolition derby the first night we arrived, I tired rowing in a sculling boat for the first time, and both Maddie and I nominated for the ALS ice bucket challenge so we decided to do it together.   

Maddie and I doing the ice bucket challenge

Demo derby at the Barton Fair

More demo derby

The lake at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center

I tired out stand up paddle boarding 

After Craftsbury I traveled to Lake Placid, New York for more training. While here I get to stay the Olympic Training Center which makes training pretty easy. All of your meals are cooked for you and you don't have to wash any dishes. Also we can rollerski to the training venue from the OTC so we don't have to drive to much. Staying here is really convenient when doing a high volume of training and even though it is not the most homey place to be it definitely makes training easy.

View from the top of Algonquin mountain, the second tallest in NY

Hiking along Avalanche Lake 

While in Jericho we went into downtown Burlington one afternoon and found this street performer juggling fire torches while riding on the suicycle 

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