As many of you know our team has been in France for almost a week riding our bikes. I am working on a video of our trip again like last year. In the meantime here is a quick update to suffice. We are staying in Courcheval the first two days were combination of jumping and riding. Our first ride after the jump session was from Coucheval over to Bourg St. Maurice then up Col de petite St. Bernard and back to Courcheval. The ride was about 90 miles and 10,000 feet of climbing. Needless to say it was quite a big first day to start the trip. The next morning after jumping we loaded up the van and drove to Grenoble to do a time trial up L'alpe d'Huez. That was brutal and some decent headwinds made it a very challenging ascent. Tay Tay had the fastest time up at around 47:30. Which is not bad considering the wind. Our third day we watch a stage of the Tour De France. We rode from Courcheval to Col de Madelaine and ascended the climb and watched the riders come by from the top. After they passed we actually had the opportunity to follow them down the hill and we rode directly to the bottom of the last climb in St. Jean de Maurienne where we got our second opportunity to watch them. Perhaps the best perk of the day was being able to get pizza and still watch the finish on TV!
Yesterday we an epic day of riding which totaled almost 8 hours in the saddle. Our ride was from St. Jean de Maurienne over telegraph, Galibier, and Croix De Fer back to St. Jean de Maurienne. It was 173 kilometers with 14,000 feet of climbing. Perhaps one of the best rides I have ever had. Check out the picture from the top of col de Galibier. Today is our last day of riding and unfortunately we have woke up to rain and wind and there is a good chance we are going to get wet today. Our team will carry on!
After Courcheval we will be heading to Oberstdorf, Germany for a couple days of jump training, and we leave on Wednesday for Russia. Our first chance to check out the new olympic facilities and the village of Sochi. Needless to say our team is pretty excited to check it out! Thanks to Honey Stinger, ColeSport, Steamboat, Fast Big Dog Racing, Space Station,
Yesterday our team took on the challenge to do a loop that consists of 150 miles with 7000 feet of climbing. We started in Kamas, UT at 8 am. Rolled out and headed up towards Coalville, UT, once in Coalville we headed out Chalk Creek Canyon. This was a rolling canyon that heads northeast towards Evanston, WY. Our first flat of the day was myself. I flatted on the dirt section at the end of C.C. The dirt section was extremely grueling, the road had just been graded which you would think would make our lives easier, however it made it more challenging. The gravel was loose on the surface and lightly sprinkled on the road surface. Plus probably the biggest climb of C.C. is on the dirt section. Luckily for us the dirt was significantly better by the time we reached the hill. The road in that section had been treated and was hard and debris free. From there it was smooth sailing for the next 40 miles into Evanston and through to the Mirror Lake Highway. We made it about 15 miles down the highway when we had our second flat of the day. While waiting for Dave to fix his tube, Old Greg showed up in the sag wagon to deliver us some delicious Mcdonalds. This was a huge boost for us, we pounded down some burgers, fries and some coke, and hopped back on the bike for the last 70 miles.
This is when the ride took a challenging turn. Riding up C.C. we had no wind what so ever however when we turned and started the M.L.H. the wind gradually picked up making our lives hell. Beating us in the face the 20 mph winds zapped the energy of our group by the Rangers station just before the climb to the summit. Dave, Eric, and greg loaded up in the car and waved good bye to Taylor and myself determined to finish the ride. Long story short we carried on over the climb and averaged 52 km per hour back the the car from the summit to call it a day. The ride took us 9 hours. Eric bested his previous longest ride by almost 70 miles. He was a champ. I owe a big thanks to Greg for supporting us through the day, and also to Dave for getting the ride organized and pulling us along the way.
Today I continue the punishment with another distance session and weights... Lets see if I am walking on thursday! Check back then.
Last week we had a rest week and things worked out so it was looking like I had a free weekend. So Pretty last minute my GF and I loaded up the car and drove down to Moab, UT. We stayed through the weekend, went and hiked the Needles, which is in Canyon Lands National Monument, and we also did some road riding and relaxing. It was a perfect break from every day life. What made it even better was coming back and not having to catch up on anything. No extra training to do or work to catch up on.
This week is back to work however, We are ramping up the minutes as usual and I have been spending more and more time training each day. Things ahead are sure to be busier and harder as we get into the meat of summer training here soon. I am excited though to get things underway. The next two years are going to fly by... So far this summer has gone well. This weekend I will be back on the bike road racing again and I hope to gain some upgrade points. It's been much harder then I anticipated this year... However I think I am making gains fast and its only a matter of time before I start getting better results.
Jumping will kick off here in just a few short weeks. With some rule changes its sure to be interesting this summer on the jump hill, both in training and competitions. I will try to keep posting the biggest differences I notice once we get underway.
So check back soon...
Just a quick update to fill you in on what I have been up to the last couple weeks. As you probably know I have been doing a bunch of road riding as usual. Definitely my favorite training activity at them moment. I was able to participate in the tour of the depot which was a two day stage race. The race had 3 stages and was a ton of fun. I finished 11th overall in the cat 4 devision. I was definitely lacking my bike legs for this race. Since that race I have participated in an RMR crit and had a ton of fun. RMR crits are great because they happen every tuesday and are a great work out. I almost was able to break away from the field but with a 100 meters to go I was reeled in by the chase group. Last week I was a participant in a sweet ride that Bill Demong put together for a bunch of like minded people. Believe it or not we had 60 people show up for an all out sufferfest. The ride was 50+ miles and easily 10,000 feet of climbing. We had several races within the ride. Each one with a great prize at the end of them. Some were Climbing TT's and others were all out flat sprints. Which appealed to wide variety of people. I know everyone had was pleased with the event and will be back in the future. Also a big thanks to Colesport for their help and support with the event. I know the products they donated kept some people on the road!
This week is an easy week for us. So it will be good to relax for a couple days and recharge and hit the pavement hard again next week. This is perfect because with the down time this week I can finish the Hunger Games Trilogy, catch up my planning for the next season and of course and most important, I can finish my coffee while still sitting on the couch. Rest weeks are awesome and they are always fully enjoyed.
Wow what a roller coaster weekend. I could not ask for a better place to win my first world cup. This victory will be probably one of the most special of my career. However I am not stopping here. I think its easy to lose focus after events like this one and I want to make sure I keep my goals in focus for the years to come. I am still enjoying my time here in Europe very much. After the victory, I was very overwhelmed with everything that was going on but after a couple days of catch up I am right back in the game and ready to go Ski Flying for the first time this weekend. Since Saturday I have travelled from Oslo to Munich, via the Ferry to Kiel. After a 9 hour drive I arrived in munich and got a great nights sleep. Today we drove down to the Adriatic Sea and will be spending a night just enjoying some warm weather and relaxing before heading up to Planica tomorrow. Then I will get my first jumps on Thursday and follow up with a few more on Saturday. I am very excited for the whole experience in general.
There are many people I need to thank for making the last two weeks possible. First off I have to thank my coaching staff, and the Ski Team for everything they have done. Next I need to thank the companies and people who have made my training possible over the last couple years. First is Latco, and DIck Latta. Without his contributions to both Taylor and I, I would not be able to focus nearly as much time and effort on training. Next is Honeystinger for providing the proper nutrition to me especially when training is at its most brutal in the summer. Their products are a staple in my pre race regimen in the winter as well. I have to Thank Jon Schafer and Fast Big Dog Racing! <<<FBDR4LIFE>>> Fast Big Dog has only scratched the surface of what it can be and I cannot thank Jon enough for what he has done. Along with Space Station in Steamboat another great contributor to the cause! Thanks Bart. I also need to thank Steamboat Resort. They have believed in me from the beginning and throughout everything. Of course I have to thank the community of Steamboat and the SSWSC for shaping who I am and supporting all their kids throughout their journey!
Perhaps most importantly I have to thank my family. They have made so many sacrifices along the way. I definitely owe them everything. Nikki Thorsen who has to put up with my life and travels, and the sacrifices she has had to endure. I cannot thank her or her family enough!
I am sure I left out a lot of people. But just know I very grateful for everything. Moving forward I hope there is many more chances in the future!
I am reporting from inside the Hotel Babylon in Liberec, Czech Republic. Today I had the first of two competitions here in Liberec. Friday left all the competitors wondering if it would be possible to get the competitions off here. After several attempts to get the competition off all failed. They moved our competition from the big hill to the small hill and still the jury found it too windy to hold the competition. Naturally our saturday morning started a little earlier then planned in order to get the necessary jumps off that we didn't get on Friday. Despite a delayed start the competition was held and the provisional round was completed. Upon completion of the provisional they decided to forego the Competition jump and use the provisional comp as todays race.
I ended up jumping to 16th place in my provisional jump. I was in the hunt, I knew I had a tough race ahead of me though. Spring skiing conditions were out in full force today. It's tough to ski when the slush is almost 1/3 of your body height. Despite my best efforts today I was not able to move up. However considering my track record in slushy races I feel that today's race was a solid effort on my part. I did what I had to do in order to hang with the group, although it cost me in places at the finish today I think it was the best way to prepare myself for future races in this conditions. Tomorrow could be exactly that, and after watching my teammate ski his ass off in this condition I know that speed in attainable. Bill Demong was impressive to say the least. Watching him or Mikko ski in these conditions is probably the best teaching anyone can get. Tomorrow I hope to imitate and put the hammer down myself.
After the race tomorrow, Taylor, Nick, Brett, and myself will be driving up to Travemunde to board our "cruiseship" to Finland. We will drive our car right onto the ship and probably take a much needed siesta. 24 hours later our crew will land in Helsinki and after a short 1.5 hour drive we will arrive in Lahti. I am looking forward to Lahti and what it has in store for us this year. However for now I have my sights set on tomorrows competition.
I have arrived in Klingenthal, Germany for this weekends competitions. This weekend kicks off the next 5 weeks on the road for myself. Klingenthal is a winter wonderland this year. This would be the most snow I have ever seen here by far. Johnny, Taylor and myself have been here since Tuesday doing some XC training and relaxing before this weekends events. While we were here during the first part of the week there was a special jumping world cup competition which made jumping not possible for us but it did provide us with some world class entertainment for a day or two before it was cancelled. We are hoping the same cancellations don't happen for us. The weather forecast is very windy for the weekend so it could be a lot of waiting on top of the hill before each jumper goes. However with the good skiing here and good food we have decided to stay here until thursday of next week to get some extra training before heading to Liberec in the Czech Republic. I know the whole team is excited to kick off this weekend right where we left off in Predazzo. After skipping Almaty I am hoping we are rested and ready to go. So I will do my best to update throughout the weekend.
With my desire to go out and roller ski dwindling and my itch for snow getting stronger I know winter is coming. In Park City, we have had a lack of natural snow the last few weeks. However that has been made up for in snow making in most areas. The temps so far this fall have been fairly decent for snow making. The hill crews at the jumps only have a few more days of work before the hill will be ready. We are hoping to be on snow by late next week.
As the new equipment for the season roles in it means only one thing, "prep work" most of this week for me has been preparing skis, cutting poles and trying the new jackets, pants, etc. Nothing worse then packing all your new gear up for the first time and getting to the competitions only to discover that it doesn't fit or has not been set up properly. So check and double check always ensures I am good to go.
This week of training has been relatively easy compared to the last month. When I last updated we were on an intensity block starting in Chicago and ending in Lake Placid, NY. Since our return to Park City, UT our team has been packing in the volume. With all the time in the day pretty much spent on skis, bikes, or running. If you follow my Twitter account you may have seen some of the workouts I have done. I have been posting them up on Twitter occasionally now that I have a GPS it is really easy for people to see where we went and what kind of training it was. The GPS is really cool simply because it maps everything, shows speeds, distance, and everything else in between. If you dont follow me on Twitter click the link on the side of this blog and it will take you right there!
Next week is our last week of hard training before we take off for Kuusamo. I couldn't be more excite to get over there. From everything I have heard Kuusamo is warm this year which will be in interesting change from the normal -35 degrees Celsius. However with warmer temps suddenly snow and wind becomes a problem so we will see what kind of mix we end up getting over there. Regardless of the weather, the team and I will be prepared. I think our team has put in some serious work this summer, now its time to capitalize on what we set out to do. So stay tuned for more frequent updates this winter. I will be updating every weekend with results and quick synopsis's of our comps. Until then I will be putting the final touches on my training and gear!
So I was just re-reading my last post and for all you curious folks out there, I was able to finish off SGP with two top 20 results. Most importantly those two finishes were results of good XC skiing on my part. I was happy to accomplish the goal I set for my self, but even happier that I was able to step up a level in my XC skiing.
Since SGP I have been extremely busy. The short and sweet version of what I have been up to is as follows: travelled home to Park City for two weeks of volume training and recovery. Followed by a short weekend long jump camp in Steamboat. Which has led us right into this week, in which we are doing multiple days of treadmill and strength testing before heading off to Nationals in Chicago, Illinois! I know, I know, most of you think that was a typo but it is not. Chicago does have a ski jump in Fox River Grove. I am also encouraging you to come out and check out the competitions on Saturday October 1st. They are going to be a hell of a good time. We will also going to be doing some fundraising, by ski jumping for 24 hours. There will be food, music, and probably some half naked girls handing out free Jagermeister as always!
Following Nationals we will be flying out east to Lake Placid, NY for our annual fall training camp as well as annual Flaming Leaves Competition. If you want to see fall color this is the place to be! Plus we will be there putting our selves in the hurt locker everyday with some strenuous intervals, they are always fun to watch. Of course we will also be jumping on the historic olympic jumps as well.
Training leading up to all this is going very well. I am feeling good and ready for the season to start this year. However before the season can start! We need some help from the Nordic Community and our fans. In these tough economic times we have lost some funding. This decrease in funding effects everyone on our team and not on our team. Without this money, our resources are stretched very thin. Our juniors are not getting the opportunity to train with the U.S. Team as frequently, nor will we be able to take one or two guys to a continental cup this year without raising some more money. Please help if you can. I am posing the link below and it will take you to our fundraising web page, which will explain more about the NC Pillar Project.
As always thank you for you support!
Wow, I cannot believe its been so long since I have updated my page. However this means only one thing. I am outside being busy with training activities. In fact I have accomplished some pretty sweet stuff in the last two months.
Starting from the beginning. After our 4th of july camp in steamboat which was extremely successful, we came home and loaded up to head over to Germany and France. We spent a week in Germany and a week in France. In Germany we focused on Jumping. We divided the week between Hinterzarten and Obertsdorf. Hinterzarten is an extremely well built jump. It has a great rhythm and you can jump well past the K point. Training there was nothing short of excellent. Our entire team had some very nice jumps there. In addition to jump equipment we brought our road bikes. We also had quite adventure on our road bikes in Hinterzarten. A simple 2 hour distance ride turned into a 4.5 hour trek 3 hours on the road and 1.5 hours riding/walking/hiking/climbing on a trail to get over a mountain and onto a road on the other side. This was a great way to kick off the week. Everyone enjoyed the adversity so much. I think it was game on from that point on. Everyone was willing and up for everything.
Obertsdorf, our a short stop before heading to France. We Spent two full days in Obertsdorf completely focusing on jumping. The jump there is large and in charge and is not afraid to test you. We had some challenging days on the jump hill there. The conditions were gorgeous and yet the wind was just strong enough to make any mistake very noticeable. Day two however I was able to overcome some of my difficulties and throw some long jumps down the hill. Mostly I think it was the excitement of getting out of there and over to france for the Tour that made my jumps a little better. Immediately after the jump session we packed up the van and hit the road.
A short 8 hours later we arrived in Courchevel, France. Courchevel is the sister city of Park City, UT. That was a pretty unique thing to see. We spent the rest of our trip posted up here in Courchevel (le Praz). We had an epic time during this week, despite the rain. We had several days of gloomy rainy weather however we did not let it stop us. We rode several routes of the Tour De France over the years. We also put our selves to the test up L'Alpe D'Huez, I have to say it was a very cool feeling to be riding the very same legendary road that all the worlds best of cycling have. However I don't think I could hammer up that road after 150 km of riding before hand. We also got to watch the stage of the race climb the road. The atmosphere of the climb was on fire. I have never seen anything like it before. I will definitely be back at some point in my life.
The TT in Grenoble was another glorious stage we got to witness with our own eyes. Though not much could be seen it was still cool to be watching from the finish line. Thanks to VERSUS! This was a cool stage to watch because you knew when it was all over the winner of the Tour De France would be known. Thats what made every little second of the TT exciting.
After France we headed back home to the USA. We arrived in the U.S. late on monday night. We had just a little less then a week to mentally refresh and prepare to compete in U.S. Special Jumping Nationals. I am not going to lie after a smaller competition on the thursday before nationals I didn't think I had much of a chance of doing anything. However I used that as motivation and put my game face on and when saturday came I was able to take 3rd place. I am happy with this result although I know I am capable of more. I will be looking to improve for the second leg of U.S. Nationals in Chicago, Illinois this fall.
As for now we are training in Park City, UT gearing up for the Summer Grand Prix which start the week of August 22nd. We will be there to compete and put our names high up on the result pages. Stay tuned I will keep you posted as much as possible between now and then!
Also Check out our videos on YOUTUBE. search for any of our names or U.S. Nordic Combined!