My first World Cup meet running a one man show has definitely been a learning experience. There really is a lot behind the scenes that need to be organised and although I ended up handling it well, it was a bit nerve racking just hoping that I had done everything that is required. Luckily I was helped out greatly by the US Ski Team who took care of my skis and in both races they were awesome, so a huge thanks to Jeff Ellis and the US Wax Tech Crew.
Sunday’s Freestyle Sprint was probably nothing that I should be complaining about too much. I skied slightly better than in Davos in terms of percentage (with almost right on 10% behind) but once again due to the lack of the smaller teams competing in World Cup this year, my position was still disappointing. With the continuing breathing issues that I have been having during these races, it brings quite a lot of frustration as I am still unsure as to how I would have gone if these issues had not come about. So with this I hope it is understandable as to why I chose to withdraw from this year’s Tour de Ski. Sure. It is quite possible that I could get my body back into proper shape in time for the tour, but having weighed up the odds, it would not be worth the disappointment of going there and having to pull out after a few stages if things didn’t go well. I am very happy about the new plan that is in store for me now anyway which sees me racing some Swiss and possibly German or Austrian FIS races. These are a lower level of competition and I am very excited to back to racing at a level where I am fighting hard for good positions. I think it is very important to get these kinds of competitions in during the season to get some good confidence back and just enjoy the lower pressure racing – you still hurt just as much, but it should feel good to be right in the mix fighting for good positions
The Shenanigans never seem to stop really, and yes most of them seem to involve our team van. For the last few days we spent in Davos, huge snow falls along with the massive crowds turned the roads into absolute chaos. Some of this chaos was admittedly caused by us, predominantly caused by Phil’s poor judgement and lack of good eyesight. Let’s just say it’s a good thing he has never considered taking up Biathlon! Picture all the small down ramp streets from the main top street being closed for very good reason due to way too much snow. Now picture us seeing the only one that doesn’t have a ‘closed’ sign up on it, with the smallest gap to make it through a section and us taking it on! I’m going to say straight away that we all were saying that we should turn back, except the one man to disagree sadly was the driver. So down goes the blue box straight into the gap with about 1 quarter of the car plunging deep into the snow drift. Despite being on a very steep descent, the blue box reverted back to its natural wheel-spinning motion. Luckily enough for Phil, he was trapped by the side rail, leaving me and Pk to dig out the car along with half of the snow-bank, that was our local charity work done and a self-written ban for Phil to drive for some time.
The next stop for us boys is Campra, where we will compete in the Swiss Cup next Wednesday and Thursday.