Former biathlete, current coach….all round nordic enthusiast!

An elite athlete competing in the sport of biathlon: nordic ski racing combined with marksmanship

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Success in Minnesota!

This year's December trials trip to the Iron Range of northern Minnesota was successful! After three days of racing in Coleraine at Mt. Itasca I was named to the U.S. team racing at the IBU Cups in Estonia and Russia at the beginning of the new year.

Here's a run down of the last two weeks of my road trip.

***Click on any photo to view them all larger in slideshow format.

West Yellowstone, Montana:

After spending a wonderful few days in Sun Valley, ID Seth and I drove back to Montana for NorAm Cup #2 in West Yellowstone. When I had left a week and a half before the ski conditions were less than awesome but by the time we returned the trails were great. We were welcomed by cold weather but my races went really well anyways. With a small women's field (just two) competing I took first in both races, shooting (1,1) in the sprint, and (0,0,1,0) in pursuit. It was a great way to finish off the first part of my trip and a good confidence booster heading into trials in Minnesota.

Here are some pictures courtesy of spectators in West:

It was really cold the second day: you can see in the photo on the right that I have a buff pulled up to protect my face and ears from the cold wind while skiing. 

The photo on the right is from the second day: you can see the orange duct tape I put on my long underwear to protect my legs from the cold. 

Women's podium from both days. Barbara (2nd place) is a National Guard competitor from Utah.

Coleraine, Minnesota:

After a long day traveling from Montana to Minnesota we found great conditions on the man-made snow at Mt. Itasca. We had three days of racing included in the trials: a sprint, a pursuit, and a mass start. In the first race (sprint) I shot (2,2) and finished third. I was less than happy with the shooting but skied well. In the second race (pursuit) I shot (1,0,2,2) and finished second. My prone shooting went really well but I struggled on the race in both standing stages, dueling it out with Hannah (see photo below) and not coming out on top. In the final race (mass start) I shot really well (0,2,0,0) and again finished second behind Hannah, who also had a good day on the range, missing just 3 shots. 

Dueling with Hannah on the range. Hannah and I have raced and skied together since we were J2s (14/15 years old) so it's neat to be going on another trip with her. 

Skiing into the range...

Chasing Hannah out on the course someplace...

On our way to the airport after the final race I got the nod for the US Team's January IBU Cup races in Estonia and Russia. Thus, after my shortest Christmas visit home ever, I'm back in Fort Kent taking advantage of the snow. Last night I went for a short ski to shake out the drive up from NH. 

Lots of snow in Fort Kent...

Lit trails in Fort Kent: even solstice darkness can't keep me off the trails!

Unfortunately going to Europe to race means that I won't be here to visit with my elementary classes (nine classes this year!) when they get back to school after their holiday break. The good news is that I got a new computer for Christmas (the fan in my old one quit) so I'll be able to post updates more often and I will be sure to let everyone know where to find results. 

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