The cold weather has taken over the west! After a small celebration for my 21st birthday in West Yellowstone, we headed even further north to Bozeman and the cold weather followed, unfortunately. My silly knee has been quite sore and as a result I only raced in the qualifying round of the sprint on Saturday. I thought I was skiing pretty well but I was just not quite as fast as I had hoped. The qualifying round of a sprint race is skied solo and for some reason I just struggle to reach my top speed skiing alone for such a quick race. It's something I have been working on, as qualifying is actually very important, especially in the higher level racing, but apparently I need to do a bit more work. Sunday brought frigid temps and a crazy course. When the girls started it was about -2 degrees!!! The course weaved in and out of the trees for about 3k and then hit the steepest hill I have ever skied into a crazy downhill with a nice 90 degree turn at the bottom into another crazy steep and longer hill, making the last 2k rather exciting. I struggled getting my muscles warmed up and I still have a lot of work to do on the technical side of things when it comes to skiing corners and the gradual downhills. Both those things took a toll on me and I ended up in 9th place.
With little to no snow in Park City, I debated continuing north to Canada with the rest of the team, but after having a sub-par weekend of racing I thought it would be best to come home, regroup, get some hard training in, and head to Canada for the last weekend of racing. Fortunately a storm hit Park City with just enough snow to open up some skiing! I have a nice week ahead of training and enjoying Mom's good cooking!!!