My last session on the HS75 Tyler and I jumped with the young ski jumpers and nordic combined skiers (definitely some future Olympians). One of my favorite little jumpers is Decker Dean. He is very small and young but he is one heck of a jumper. I can just tell that he is having so much fun doing the sport that he loves. At the end of the session we decided to have a long standing competition (whoever jumps the farthest and doesn't crash wins). It sounds a little dangerous but it makes jumping much more fun and besides the goal of the sport is to jump as far as possible. I went to the top of the jump and had a very good jump, around 75meters. Decker had a good jump but was just short the 75 meter mark. However just being able to train with the young group of kids was so much fun. I was happy to finish the week with my best session of the winter. The week was a success and I definitely found the fun in ski jumping again.
The following day, Tyler and I competed in the University of Colorado NCAA Invitational 20k cross country race. Being a nordic combined skier, I am used to only racing 10k but this was twice the distance. I was really looking forward to skiing against college racers. The race started faster than I expected and I didn't think I could hold onto the lead group. However throughout the race I slowly picked skiers off one by one and realized I was skiing in the top 15! I skied smart and slowly people started dropping off. I came into the finish with a pack of 4 skiers and it came down to a sprint. I was able to edge out two of them and finished the race 10th overall and was the top American in the field! I was extremely happy with my result and it helped boost my confidence in my racing.
I am now back in Park City training hard and working on my ski jumping. I have been jumping with the club team here but due to poor weather I haven't had many jumping sessions. However the cross country skiing has been good and I have been able to take some long skis. I even went alpine touring with some friends last week to change up my training a little bit.
February 18th; 2:30amMST (or replayed on NBC later in the day)
February 20th; 3amMST (or replayed on NBC later in the day)