<< News Home

The White Circus
Wednesday, November 30, 2005

A great day... When we arrived at the mountain this morning it was like any other day this week- we were a few minutes late and it was awful cold. However, today there was a World Cup Slalom spot on the line. The top American non-qualified athlete would land a berth to race on Sunday at Beaver Creek.

Roger Brown, Drew Roberts, Tim Jitloff, (all USST C Team members) and I were the only ones really in contention for the spot because of our start positions. Everyone else that started out of the top seed didn't really have a chance because of course deterioration.

First run Roger and Drew both fell. I skied solid without any significant mistakes, but after the 53 seconds were decided I led Jitloff by a few hundredths of a second.

During the next few hours time dragged at a snail's pace- knowing he had an earlier start position in the second run and only a fraction of a second kept us apart. The second run course setter merely moved the course over a few feet making it basically identical to the first run course.

The stage was set. It was either all or nothing. I watched Jitloff push out of the gate, make a few good turns, and I knew it was my turn. I leaped out of the gate as hard as I could and dropped the hammer. I crossed the finish line over a second ahead of Jitloff solidifying my position to the big show.

The best part of today was when I found out that my fellow Colby Alum Jenny Lathrop landed the Women's World Cup Slalom berth. Go Colby Go.

posted by Warner at 11/30/2005 08:21:00 PM (permanent link to this post) 0 comments

Colorado Continues
Tuesday, November 29, 2005

The last two days have been a lesson in patience as I have been competing against the deepest fields I've ever seen at a non-World Cup event. To have 18 GS points and start around 50th the last two days has been more than a humbling experience, but there is light at the end of the tunnel. Yesterday I finished 36th and today I moved up to 34th. Yesterday I was the first non-USST (U.S. Ski Team) finisher and today I was the second. Today I had a great opportunity to put it down the hill, but unfortunately first run I hip-checked (i.e. I fell on my side for a fraction of a second losing elevation and important hundredths), but there were moments of brilliance. Second run was a bit too turny and I never found the rhythm.

Tomorrow's slalom is another great opportunity. The field is even deeper, but because of some good performances last year I have enough Nor-Am points to start in the first group (the first group is the top 15 start positions, which is based off of last season's Nor-Am events rather than FIS points). I drew bib 11 and I can't wait.

My slalom skis are prepped and ready. Tomorrow there is only one option: drop the hammer and go go go (to give some of you an idea of how stacked the field is a buddy of mine with 10 points is starting 52; his world rank in slalom is under 80).

My goal is to stay in the top thirty and pick up some Nor-Am points. It's all or nothing.

posted by Warner at 11/29/2005 08:32:00 PM (permanent link to this post) 0 comments

Hello from Colorado
Wednesday, November 23, 2005

The season is upon us. Seasonal ski areas across the U.S. are running their lifts and opening their doors. There is no better time to un-strap our race skis, buckle our boots, slid into the gate, and, most importantly, pull the trigger. Four days of Nor-Am racing starts on Monday, November 28. The Nor-Ams competitions are the premiere ski races in North America other than World Cup events so next week racers from all over the globe will be ready to prove that summer and full training has paid off. Hopefully, Team SRI, the ski team that I am part of, will lead the charge.

After an uneventful drive cross county, we've had some good training and better free skiing (i.e. skiing without gates) out here in Colorado. Over the past week we've been training at A-Basin warming up for the Nor-Ams and of course acclimating to living at 10,000 feet above sea level- it's always a pleasure to be out of breath after running up the stairs. I guess some things never change.

Either way, early mornings and turkey will dominate the next few days. But, I just wanted to drop you all a line and let you know that game time is in the immediate future.

Hope all is well and Happy Thanksgiving!

posted by Warner at 11/23/2005 09:30:00 PM (permanent link to this post) 0 comments