Friday, January 29, 2010

Current events (en francais!)

Salut les amis!

J’ai decide que je vais essayer d’ecrirer mon blog en francais! (Pardon the lack of French accoutrement I am writing on an English keyboard...English version will be included)

Apres le GS a Maria Alm, nous voyagons en Suisse pour quatre courses (deux SL, deux GS). Premierement, nous avions deux Slalom a Melchsee Frutt. Elles etaient des courses de nuit! C’est une experience tres interessante! Nous arrivions a la montagne a 2 h 30 pm. La premiere inspection etait a 5 h. Par 6 h le ciel etait noir et la piste etait illuminee. J’avais le temp de regarder les premieres coureuses. Mon dossard etait cinquante et un (51) donc je ne partais pas avant longtemps apres la premiere coureuse! Ma premiere descente etait bonne, mais juste a l’exterieur du flip. Je n’ai pas fini ma deuxieme descente.

Notre deuxieme jour a Melchsee Frutt l’horaire etait devance de trente minutes. Mon dossard etait dix-neuf (Le premier jour etait une coupe d’europe et le deuxieme etait juste une course FIS). Je n’ai pas fini ma premier descente mais je pense que je skiais bien.

OK! now the English version!

After our time racing in Maria Alm our schedule looked like this: 4 days in Switzerland (2 in Melchsee Frutt and 2 in Crans-Montana), 2 days in Italy, and now 4 days in France (2 in Courcheval and two in Chamonix).

In Melchsee Frutt I raced my first Europa Cup Slalom..and it was at night! It is very strange doing night slaloms because it means you get to sleep in and have a leisurely morning. I think we woke up at 9! You do a 10 minute flush on the bike followed by some agility and core then sit around until lunch. Lunch was big (usually our lunches are just snacks really). It was strange arriving at the hill at the time we are usually leaving the hill. It was all shadowy and dark when we were training in the warm up courses. First inspection took place at dusk and first run started almost the very minute it got dark. My start number was 51 so I had enough time to watch the first few racers. I was a little intimidated by the competition. I am ranked 81st in the world and I was starting 51st...the race was a very world class race. After the first run I was in thirty-first which was good but I was not the most thrilled with my skiing. I wanted to attack the course more and have cleaner skis. The second run I went out on the third gate..I was too amped up and over excited I think. It was a very good experience though and Britt Phelan my team mate came 5th and Erin Mielzynski came 10th. THe next day was a FIS night slalom and I straddled a gate on the first run. THe next morning we packed up and headed to the French side of Switzerland to a place called Crans-Montana.

Crans Montana was quite the ritzy resort. Gucci, Louis Vutton, Chanel were some of the shops lining the streets of the town. Yet despite all the glamour of the place we were staying in the seediest hotel of our trip yet. It was called “la chaperone rouge”...yup the red chaperon!!! Our shower had a punch hole in the glass!!! It must be said however that it had amazing food. The race hill at Crans was extremely flat and long. It was almost a minute and 20 seconds. This would have been no problem except the the steep difficult part started at about a minute and 5 seconds into it. It was actually fairly dangerous...I saw two Swiss girls straddle the last gate and blow their knees/ severely hurt themselves on the very last gate as the struggled to get around it. The first day was a Europa cup and we didn’t qualify for the second run. The second day was a FIS race and I came 39th my team mate Eve Routhier came 40th. From Crans Montana we headed to Gressoney, Italy for another night slalom.

In Gressoney we stayed in a beautiful hotel that was built in 1906. It was also by far not the oldest building around. It looked new in comparison to some of the buildings. We arrived at night then had the next morning to putter around before heading to the hill at 3 o clock. The food was AMAZING!!! The best lasagna, schnitzel, ice cream etc that I have every had. Nobody can say that Italians can’t cook! So as you can imagine we basically rolled to the hill. The slope was steep and injected-it was perfect. I felt I was skiing well just in a little pain. Back in Maria Alm I hit my hand on a gate and have been having trouble lifting, pressing, squeezing with my left hand. It is only a tiny isolated area to the touch that hurts but oh boy hitting slalom gates was tough. So I loaded up with tylenol and away I went. I started 47th and ended up 23rd. I was quite happy with this rresult but I also feel that I can step it up another few notches as i got conservative at the bottom of the course both runs. I should be noted here that my team mate Britt Phelan had a stunner of a night! She won the first run!! Watching her second run she was in a completely different league than everyone else coming down the hill. But alas it was not to be she fell inside half way down the pitch and hiked a gate but we all know she would have killed it! Congrats Britt! The next morning we were back in the van headed towards Courcheval, France.

Courcheval is part of “de trois vallees” which I believe has one of the largest skiable acres in the world. Today was a GS EC Race and I actually qualified for second run. I was really unhappy with how I skied and tried to make changes for second run. I ended up 52nd. I am racing again tomorrow and right now it is snowing hard outside! Should be good! Today I found out that my team mate Erin Mielzynski qualified for the Olympics. This is amazing news as they were able to expand our quota which was originally 15 to 19. The girls who are going to represent Canada at the 2010 Winter Olympics are:

Britt Janyk

Emily Brydon

Marie-Michele Gagnon

Brigitte Acton

Anna Goodman

Shona Rubens

Erin Mielzynski

CONGRATULATIONS!!!! As for myself and other team members not on the list we will still be attending the games...only as forerunners!! Which means we will still be skiing and running the courses just as the testers instead of the racers. We will still get the Olympic experience and I am very excited to take in the Olympic atmosphere. It is the best possible second option as now we will have experience with such a massive scale of event before heading into the Olympic Games in Russia in 2014.

Tomorrow we head to Chamonix for a few days while my younger team mates race the World Junior Championships there.

Ciao for now!

1 comment:

  1. Wow, Elli. It is so cool hearing all of these legendary ski race area names - and you're racing there! I've ben watching and hearing about races at these ski areas my whole life and it's so cool that you're experiencing them live. Me.... envious? No! Proud? YES!