What a crazy few weeks this has been. After the exciting trip to Sweden (podium!!) I flew back to Munich for a few days rest. I was struck down with a chest infection- suspected from the -20 air in Sweden! My plan was to train hard in the gym that week to prepare for the WC stops in Russia and WC Finals in Blue Mountain, Canada. Clearly, that didn't happen- but I flew to Russia on the mend after some days resting.
Sunny Valley, Russia. What a place! A purpose built centre for Freestyle and Snowboard events hosted our second last WC of the season. Crowds in excess of 10,000 attended the event and created an exciting atmosphere. The track was fun and simple, making racing tight and competitive. I qualified in second place- My best qualifying result ever. I didn't get to the podium in the race though- challenging conditions with fresh snow made passing impossible as the race went on, slowing down the track. I came 7th.
As 'cool' as Russia was, I was very happy to leave and get back to real food and water in Europe (even if it was just for one night!). The unpack/repack continued as we got organised to fly to Canada for World Cup Finals.
World Cup Finals is the last World Cup of the season. Only the top 16 Women and 32 Men are invited to compete. This year, our finals returned to Blue Mountain, Canada- A couple of hours drive from Toronto. We last raced here five years ago, where I came 5th. So I had great 'feelings' about this place. The added bonus of coming back to Blue, was that we got to have dinner with Shawn's family in Toronto and I enjoyed my first home cooked meal since Christmas!
The track in Blue was built by White Industries' Nick Roma. Challenging spring like conditions bought rain to the area and ate away at most of the snow. Luckily Nick knows what he is doing, and we have had a fast, technical race. I had some mistakes in the Semi Final that cost me a lot of speed and was passed at the finish line by Canadian Britt Phelan (for her first big final!). After a scrappy semi, I put down my best run of the week and won the small final- matching my previous Blue Mountain result of 5th place.
I feel that my skiing is moving in the right direction and I cant wait to race at the World Championships in Sierra Nevada, Spain on March 18. Tune into the action LIVE on EuroSport (Foxtel!)!
I am about to drive down to Toronto with Shawn and Martin for a day of tourist adventures (we visited Niagara Falls before coming to the race!) before we fly back to Munich tonight. Meeting me in Munich is my number one supporter- My amazing husband Ben! Ben is joining be for the last two weeks in Spain.