So winter has certainly continued with heavy snowfalls! With a base of around a metre and a half we are set for the season! All I’m after now is sun!
So after the Australian team camp, the training kicked on and with most of the coaches still staying up at Falls, the camp basically seemed to continue on an extra week which was awesome! It was great to spend a session a day with coaches either working on technique or just being pushed during intervals.
Last weekend we also had the first distance skate race of the season, the High Plains Tour, a 10km mass start. The regular Falls Creek or BNSC crew didn’t set the racecourse, so it was quite unique. It was two 5 kilometre laps with the first 2 kilometres being all steady climbing and then the next 1.5 straight back down, before a brief ski on some flat and rolling terrain and then back into the monster climb.
The race went really well for me and I managed to out sprint my competitors for the win!
I realize I’ve said this next phrase a lot recently in my blogs so I guess I’m just keeping with tradition. The gun went and I found myself at the front of the pack leading out the mass of races, making my way up the long climb. Pretty quickly it was down to a pack of four and as we crested the top of the final climb I put the foot down pushing over the top hard and splintering the group. Just like the previous race, Phil came with me and we skied down together, gapping the rest of the field more and more. As we began to climb a second time, Phil put the power down and attacked. I quickly tucked behind him and kept pace with him up the climb. I think we were both starting to go into the red towards the end of the climb and just before the crest it seemed like the pace eased. As we began to descend for the last time the race had completely changed from a 10km distance race to a tactical mind game and sprint finish. With around a kilometre to go, I attacked from behind, Phil making a dash for the line. Phil is an exception sprinter and I knew if it came to a 100metre dash for the line, I didn’t stand much of a chance. I pushed to get just a metre or two in front of him as we headed around the third corner. I managed to get a perfect inside line, gain a little bit of ground, winning by 5 seconds.
The next day was Inter Club relays and it almost didn’t seem fair. The top three finishers from the 10km were all in the relay together. Phil, Nick Montgomery and myself raced for BNSC and we cleaned up by around 5 minutes.
Still it was a great race and a lot of fun. Thanks to the organizers for these events.
We have two weeks off racing before the first big race gets underway with the first round of National champs at Perisher in NSW. I’m extremely excited to head off for some big races and see if I can really keep this good form going!
Train hard, rest easy, live for the moment.