A Tour de Ski

In Europe, a ski event called the Tour de Ski is held annually. It was modeled after the Tour de France cycling event, and it has 6 to 9 stages, or ski races. This year has been historical for the US, with 2 American women, Sophie Caldwell and Jessie Diggins winning stages in a competition field that is normally dominated by the Scandinavians (or mainly the Norwegians). One of the challenging aspects of the Tour is the number of races condensed into a small amount of time. This year, the athletes are racing in 8 races in 10 days, in 4 different venues across 3 different countries.
Senior Nationals

I apologize for not getting a blog up earlier, as promised, but after my dad left Houghton, on Monday, I moved in the EU guys that were up there, and I didn't have anymore wifi.
Racing in Michigan

For me, I did a little Tour de Ski myself, racing in 5 races in 6 days in 2 venues in 2 states! I competed in the classic distance race, skate sprint, and skate mass start in Houghton, Michigan for Senior Nationals. I had high expectations for Senior Nationals, and I definitely didn't meet them. I was pretty bummed, but I can appreciate the poor performances because it makes me reflect on them, and I'm learning what I need to work on to become a better all-around skier and racer. I was also extremely lucky to be surrounded by supportive teammates, friends and coaches throughout the week.
Fooling around with the guys during the Sprint heats (far right)
We drove home from Houghton Thursday night (and got home very very early Friday morning) and after one day back in the Twin Cities, Highland raced in the Loppet Invite yesterday (Saturday)! I was really excited for this invite because it's one of the most competitive Minnesota high school Invites, and Highland had potential to do well as a team.
Lili, Jake, Me, and Maria in the cold on Saturday

The Loppet Invite was made up of 2 races, first a classic mass start and second a skate pursuit. The pursuit start order was the finish order from the classic race, so if one person beat another by 5 seconds, they would start 5 seconds in front of them for the skate race.
Start of Classic Race
The classic race went well for me. It was a short course and a lo
t of girls racing, so as soon as the gun went off, I tried to go out fast to stay out of the way of any crashes. I succeeded and lead the whole race, winning by 33 seconds. In the second race, I had the fastest skate time by 12 seconds so I ended up winning the whole Invite by 45 seconds, which was very nice after having rough races at Senior Nationals.
Finally had a good race :)

After the Tour de Ski, the athletes get a 2 week break before any other big races come up on the schedule. For me, I get to race again on Tuesday (if it isn't canceled from the cold) and I have some Midwest JNQs next weekend in Wausau, Wisconsin!
Celebrating good races! 


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