Oh hello there! Wow what a busy season it’s been. After the first two World Cup races in Italy I headed back to Canada for Christmas with my family and friends. Whistler Blackcomb had some great skiing so I was a happy girl! After Christmas we flew back to Europe for more racing. The first race was in St. Johann, Austria. It’s a really fun place to race because so many people come out to support and cheer us on as well as it being a night race… people tend to party it up and get a little wild. Austrians sure do love ski racing! I had an okay race making it to the small finals, but ended up 8th due to a tangle up off the first jump.
After St. Johann we drove to Alpe d’Huez, France. The course in Alpe d’Huez was super fun with lots of speed and many features. It made for a great race! I was skiing really well on race day and made it to the finals. I finished 2nd behind Switzerland’s Sanna Luedi!! It was an awesome feeling being on the podium again so early in the season! Unfortunately my teammate Kelsey Serwa had a bad crash off a jump in the final and tore her knee and is now out for the remainder of the season. Get well soon Kels!
From Alpe d’Huez we drove across France to Les Contamines with a quick McDonald’s stop on the way (McDonald’s in France is probably better than North America I recommend it!) The course in Les Contamines was fairly similar to last year with one addition… ICE!! The course workers water injected several of the turns so the course would stay in good shape for the race day and first day of training I was like Bambi on ice. I got my act together for the qualifying and had a career best of third! The race didn’t go as well as it could’ve. I made small finals, but unfortunately my ski popped off when I was leading the heat going into the first turn so I finished 8th! From Les Contamines we flew home for a quick break before the North Amercian leg of the season.
X Games is an amazing event with a great course and huge features held in Aspen, Colorado. The builders spend many hours pushing around snow to make it perfect. It’s much longer than our World Cup courses clocking in around a minute thirty seconds… very tiring on the legs! X games is different than World Cup, instead of 4 people on course it is made more exciting with 6! On the day of the race I was skiing well and was confident with the course. I won the semi-finals and made it to the finals. In the finals I was in second going into a jump and the Norwegian girl in front of me lost some speed from missing her landing so I was able to make a pass. While I was in front I came into a bank turn and got compressed by the G forces and had a crash and got passed. I ended up 5th, but was definitely disappointed with my result.
From Aspen drove to Denver to fly to Toronto for the next World Cup at Blue Mountain in Collingwood, Ontario. Since I didn’t get to participate last year I was really excited to race in front of the Canadian crowd! Before we began racing we (my teammates and I) went and visited elementary schools in Collingwood. It was an awesome experience having all of those kids so excited to meet us and wanting autographs. At Blue I qualified 2nd (BEST EVER!) so I had a good spot heading into the heats. On the day of the finals I sailed through all three heats to take my first World Cup WIN!! It was a great feeling heading over the last jump and hearing the home crowd cheering for Canada! Chris Del Bosco won the men’s and Brady Leman was second. Overall it was a great day for Canada!
From Blue Mountain a slightly diminished team headed to Park City, Utah to compete in the US Grand Prix Ski Cross at the Canyons Resort. The course had a very technical start which several of the girls were unable to do, but my teammate Georgia and I made it up no problem! The rest of the course was really fun with a BIG hip jump halfway down the course and lots of other features. In the semifinals my teammate Georgia had a big crash and ended up breaking bones in her thoracic spine and neck. Get well soon Georgia!! In the finals of the race I was winning heading into the hip jump, but got pushed too far left to hit it so I ended up taking the alternate route. Katrin Mueller the Swiss girl who was second didn’t hit the jump well so I ended up staying in front and winning the race!!
Overall it has been an amazing season and I hope to keep the ball rolling heading back to Europe next week. For now though it’s time to kick back and relax here in Whistler.