Yesterday after the race, everyone except for the men’s distance racers packed up and drove from Davos to Predazzo, Italy. I’m really happy to be here, in the same hotel we stayed at for the Tour, because it’s cozy and it’s a really fun town to be living in for the next two weeks. And the US team (Jumpers, Nordic Combined and Cross Country) booked almost the entire hotel! So there are USA flags hanging from the windows and for the first time in a long time, I can understand almost every conversation happening in the dining room.
Before we left Davos, we had a little birthday party for one of the coaches here from APU – Erik Flora. It was his 40th, so we got him a plate full of chocolates and 40 cans of coke!
The Schumacher kids had a blast playing with the static from the balloons…and BEING WORLD CUP FORERUNNERS!!!!! Gus and Rudy both got to go ski the course in official bibs 10 minutes before the start of our race. They did a great job and it was so cool to see them head out as I was warming up.
The race weekend went really well for the team – in Saturday’s classic sprint, Andy got a season-best 4th, Kikkan finished 8th, Simi made the semifinals, and Ida and Holly also made the rounds. Sadie and Sophie pulled a classic “Sodie” moment and tied to the hundreth of a second for 32nd place. How crazy is that?!? The classic course had a wicked s-turn on the downhill, and it got super icy. So many people fell on it, or almost hit the boards. It wasn’t a good course in terms of it skiing well, but the men had to stride instead of being able to double-pole and I guess the spectating was more interesting than usual on the corners!
However, I hate watching sprint races because I get super nervous for my teammates – it’s hard to sit still and watch when people are crashing and breaking poles and you’re worried your teammate might be one of them! But I didn’t need to worry – Andy, Kikkan and Simi all skied the tricky corner SO smoothly, passing on the inside and gaining speed out of the turn. It was super impressive to watch!
I was really excited to do the 10km skate race on Sunday because it was an individual start, which I really like, and the course was really hard. There weren’t any big steep climbs like you might usually find on a World Cup course, but at higher altitude and with a long gradual climb up and a gradual decent, there was almost no opportunity to rest. So pacing was super important! I felt like my first lap I was skiing smooth and controlled and had hoped I paced it right, but the second lap I started to come unglued. I found myself switching to V1 where the first lap I had easily V2’d a climb. Oops!
And with about 1km to go, I caught an edge on a 180-degree corner and crashed. Luckily, I didn’t break any poles and spun a full circle, so when I got up I was still facing the right direction. But I definitely had a 10-minute window after the race where I was pretty disappointed in myself for blowing a top-10 opportunity with a crash. But so it goes – you’re allowed to be bummed out for a short time, then you have to get over it, and look forward. What I AM super pumped about is getting three girls in the top 20 (me, Liz and Holly) and the fact that since training is winding down in preparation for World Champs, my body is finally absorbing all the training and starting to feel snappy!
Alright. I need to go do laundry, because my race suit can almost stand up on it’s own. Just kidding, that’s gross! You didn’t need to know that. 🙂