|Fall is coming!|
This weekend, Jackie, Tim, and I decided to venture to Vermont and try out being biathletes! We all went to our respective houses on Wednesday to get in some time with our families, but headed to former Adam Terko's house on Friday. He is a former SLU coach and current head coach of the Mansfield Nordic Club.
Thank you so much to Adam and his roommate, Liam, for hosting us all weekend. Being Mansfield Nordic athletes in residence was truly a pleasure. They have everything you could possibly need as a skier! Adam's homemade bread was especially great. Jackie and I ate an entire loaf in one meal... Thank you so much for making our weekend possible.
On Saturday, Jackie and I got to do our first real biathlon race ever! We’ve done some paintball biathlon, and I have done a running biathlon race, but this was the first real experience, or as close to the real experience as rollerskiing can get. It is pretty crazy to have your first real biathlon race be World Cup trials, but we made the best of it. It was really fun and a great experience. Biathlon is great, because it can remind you of things that we often forget in skiing:
1) Try things, even if you get last! Jackie and I were last (part of her rear sight fell off) and second to last, but we got to toe the line with some of the best in the world, and that is always an honor.
2) It is all about the process.
3) Anything can happen in a race. I find that in skiing it is easy to get caught up in your own expectations of where you should be, but really we need to remember that anything can happen in a race and someone you beat one day can come back to beat you the next. With shooting (or your sight falling off) as an added factor, things can change quickly in biathlon.
It was a relief to have our first biathlon race down, with our two goals accomplished! 1) Don’t get DQ’d. 2) Hit a target. Keeping it simple.
|Moosin' it (photo from Liam)|
It was also a relief to get back to Adam’s where there was more bread! (And good company, showers, and plenty of other food too). After a homework-filled afternoon, we had an awesome dinner with Adam and Liam’s friends who are also really amazing biathletes. It was great to meet new people and remember just how friendly and helpful everyone is in the biathlon/ski community.
On Sunday, Tim, Jackie, and I all raced. Tim won his race (YAY!), and Jackie and I were last again in the senior trials race. However, we were last by less, and let me tell you, this felt like a huge accomplishment.
We are halfway through October and starting to think about Thanksgiving camp and getting our race speed back! This weekend was a blast and a great way to ease into the racing scene in a new and different way. Now, we're ready to get back to working with the team toward carnival season. Good things are to come.