Whew, fresh off of another jaunt across part of Europe! Six to seven hour drives have been the norm this season and it sure has been giving us plenty of time to listen to 90’s top hits playlists and Ted Talks! Nothing like jamming to some J-Lo, Third Eye Blind and Britney Spears for hours on end to make you tone deaf and delirious.
It’s been a tough season for me, with no real results to speak of. At times it can be overwhelming to think about where I am at right now in my ski career, after coming back from injuries that were almost back to back with back to back to back to back surgeries this was supposed to be (at least in my mind) a huge year for me. I’ve mentioned it many times but this was the first preparation period since 2010 where I wasn’t returning from a knee surgery of some sort. Finally feeling strong and powerful, poised for success and instead I am in the midst of my worst World Cup season to date. It’s tough to choke that sentence down and to really admit where I’m at. At times I want to have a complete melt down, roll around on the floor and throw a temper tantrum (ask any five-year-old, temper tantrums are best thrown while on the floor as its much more dramatic) complete with legs and arms kicking and screaming my head off. Unfortunately, I am a 26-year-old woman and those types of antics would be frowned upon, at least in public. What I do on my own time is my own business…hehe better turn the volume up on that stereo!
The rest of the time when I don’t feel like having a hissy fit is the feeling that I am on the verge of great success. With so many good training runs under my belt this season where even with mistakes I was top ten it is almost inexplicable to me why the races have been going so poorly. Yea, for sure I’ve had some bad luck…In Cortina having my poles over the wand two separate times with 10 seconds till kicking out the gate then START STOP and getting pulled back in the start house due to wind, then racing with a headwind anyway… to having what seemed would be a great start number in Garmisch by running early then blowing out of the course in the bumpy, gnarly “holle” section along with five other racers in the first seven starters. Yep, the rest of the racers for sure knew something was up in that section after most of us didn’t make it through there! Even in Super-G I feel like I am the precipice of breaking through, managing to score points in Cortina after some bone headed mistakes and just missing the points in Garmisch after even larger mistakes; turns out being out in the slush just before the uphill traverse isn’t too speedy then following with another mistake with a near straddle where I had to recruit some of my slalom quickness and cross-block a Super-G gate. It’s almost like I have to go through this phase of making huge mistakes till a I break through. Like some sort of painful, frustrating right of passage. Or at least that’s how it feels…
Overall it just seems like things haven’t been going my way…it can’t continue on like this forever though. I know my skiing is at its best right now, after every disappointing race I have watched my video and come away actually kind of psyched. Thinking “wow”, I am actually kind of ripping till I make a mistake or some other mishap happens.
For now, the battle continues, and there are still some chances left to turn things around this season! I am excited for the next few races in Crans Montana and La Thuile, they are going to be technically more difficult than what we have seen this year but I am looking forward to the challenge!