Nordic Combined Athlete
Jumping Farther, Skiing Faster
Two and a half weeks ago I left for Boston, Mass to attend one of the Annual U.S. Ski Team “Ski Balls.” The events are fundraisers for the U.S. Ski Team where they derive much of the funding that supports the organization. They are very important to the success of the organization and there is no shortage of fun either. This is my second year returning to the event and I had a blast. There is some great socializing, food and entertainment. After the event in Boston, Taylor and I immediately flew to Lake Placid, NY for our 2014 nationals. Despite having an off day on the jump hill I was very happy to ski a great race moving up the ranks and finishing third. I was very happy to have some confidence in my racing heading into final prep phases of the season.
The day after the competitions in Lake Placid we boarded a flight bound for Munich, Germany. Upon arrival we kicked off a very intense jumping camp in which I feel our entire team made some great progress. We also enjoyed some on snow training at the Glacier in Ramsau, Austria. The Dachstein Glacier was a real treat and it was a blast to be on snow again. We wrapped up our camp in Oberstdorf, Germany on the iced inrun track. Jumping on a snow track is also very much a relief after jumping on porcelain all summer. The smooth of the ice will always be a favorite of mine. This is the second year in a row that we have had the opportunity to finish our summer jumping on the ice track and I am very grateful we get the opportunity to do so.
Outside of the training, it was a treat to have Aquaman on this trip as a special guest. Ok maybe it was not the real Aquaman but Billy Demong certainly played the part. He wore the costume for 10 days morning, noon, and night. As per the rules of the bet he lost to Taylor. Billy D was a great sport about it and rocked the costume with a positive attitude that made the camp full of laughter. In fact he is still wearing it on the plane home 1 day past what he was required to wear it for! I think it potentially could be hard for us to get him to take it off!
With just a few weeks left of training before taking off to Kuusamo, Finland for the World Cup openers the excitement grows each passing day. Training is getting easier and more focused, partially because it’s so close you can taste the cold Finnish air, and partially because this is the time of the year when the snow fly’s for us in the USA, So on that note let’s all pray for cold temperatures so we can blow some snow at home and get our winter training underway!
One last thing our annual Drive for 25 fundraiser for the National Nordic Foundation is currently underway and we have less then a month to raise 25,000 dollars. While that may seem like a lofty goal, all I am asking is that each of my friends and acquaintance’s donate 25 dollars and have one friend of theirs do the same. Many hands make light work, and more then the money we want to spread awareness. So Please, Please, Please, go to. www.grouprev.com/skifletch to donate. My goal is to raise 1000 dollars for our development pipeline! Remember that I would not be where I am today if it were not for the generous support I received along the way. Give each kid a fair chance to be the next Nordic Combined Star! Thanks in advance and I hope to see you all on the snow soon!