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North America

After a great training block in (unseasonably warm) TJ and I headed off to North America for the first world cup races of the season in Lake Louise, Canada and Beaver Creek, USA.

This year we decided to travel only a few days before the first training runs and many thanks to Canadian Affair for the help with the flights! After a few days training at Nakiska near Calgary we headed up to the Chateau at Lake Louise.

The first race is always fun as its the first time you see many of the other racers since the previous season, or in my case 2 seasons! It was great to meet up with everyone again and join up with the American team again who we work with at the races. Frustratingly it started dumping snow as we arrived causing the first training run to be cancelled. The next two training runs went ahead. I found it difficult to find my groove at the high speeds and was a bit disappointed with the training runs. When race day came I skied much better on the top section before making a huge mistake on the ‘fall away’ turn causing me to run very late and carry hardly any speed onto the bottom flats and leaving me well off the pace.

With very little time to think about the races we jumped on a flight down to Colorado for Beaver Creek. I forgot just how steep and gnarly the track is there! Wow! It is really spectacular! After a 30 second flat section (with enormous terrain to work) the hill drops away at what they call ‘the brink’ and from there on it is non stop action!

Again the first training run was cancelled, this time due to some issues with the track and safety concerns. Very disappointing when we really wanted as much time on the track as possible to get to grips with it. My first training run was far too cautious but I overcame my nerves in the second one to charge at it but made some mistakes. Sadly I didn’t get to race the downhill as TJ did.

I raced the super-g and skied well in places but made one big error in the middle so ended up with a disappointing 55th place.

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