Da End

by fillyb March 14, 2010

So I may finally have a legit reason for my crappy race on Wednesday. Regardless of what caused that s***show, I definitely have a reason for my (even worse) results Friday and Sunday. A little bit after I last posted I started coughing. And it has gotten worse and worse and worse, and by this point I sound like a 20-year smoker and feel like I have pneumonia. With no hyperbole, the relay yesterday was the slowest, most painful 5k I’ve ever skied. I had serious trouble breathing for a solid half hour post-race. 

It’s really disappointing to get sick for three of the biggest races of my season, but I figure that at least I had a really solid season and 1/4 of a good JO’s than a bad season and 3/4 of a bad JO’s. 

I feel like Stefan covered the relay and epic snowball fight pretty well, but I think I just need to share the image of Russell, shirtless, getting completely massacred at point blank by about 10 Alaskan snowballs. Tough kid. 

 
(Russell, coincidentally is sitting next to me in the airport listening to instrumental beats on his iPod and rapping about people’s shoes: “Look at those Uggs, that lady killed a pair of pugs, they’re dumb but I need to get me some so I can look thug.” Russell seems to have found his lyrical niche because he sure as hell can’t rap about anything else)

We’re all running on about 3 hours of sleep after getting back from the dance at 12 (it was the usual epic dry-hump festival. Rad). And now it’s time to board the plane. Farewell, blog. 

Love,
-Filly  

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The last race day.

by iputthethuginnorthug March 13, 2010

Today was the last race day, which is always reserved for the relays.  Personally, i felt that I had a better day than the past two races, but still mediocre.  Oh well.

Relays are definitely my favorite event to watch, and they are also a blast to compete in.  the course held up pretty good since everybody went early in the morning when the snow was still nice and hard. 

the last race to go off was the OJ/J1 girls race.  Since every body had already finished racing, ALL of the athletes lined up on the last hill to cheer.  People were lined up 3 deep, and I would imagine that anyone racing up that hill would feel almost abused by sound.  It was a sight to see, with sections of teams in their respective colors all screaming their @$$es off.  I think we put some of the tour de france stage finishes to shame.  What a great atmosphere it was on that hill, everybody was relaxed, glad to be done racing, and having a great time.  

In the ten minute lulls between racers, a curious thing happened.  I don’t really know how it started, could have been our j2 girls throwing snow at Team Alaska, then they retaliated, missed, hit some other teams, but about after 30 seconds the ENTIRE hill was battling it out with Alaska.  Man, what a cool sight, packs of kids in their uniforms, streaming after alaska like vibrantly colored, pissed off schools of fish.  I found it really touching that all of these competitive people, who had been going tooth and nail with each other all week could come together to fight for a single cause, which would be whipping the tar out of Alaska.   After we put their tails between their legs, a huge collective cheer rose from the hill.   That is something I will literally never forget. 

GOLD STAR: me, for drilling Eric Patterson(j1 skier, brutally good) in the face. 

24 hours of travel tomorrow, Yay!!

Stefan

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by farwestnordic March 12, 2010
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by Kelsey Dion

by farwestnordic2010juniorolympics March 11, 2010

So. it is Thursday. I always forget how fast this week flies by because it starts very slowly. All in all I am very impressed with the group Far West got this year. Everyone is doing an awesome job and are all very very nice kids. also, FAR WEST IS IN SIXTH PLACE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That is correct. ahead of PNSA. Speaking of PNSA they have quickly turned into our new rivals and partners in crime. Our vans may or may not have been tagged last night with the PNSA emblem. The races here have been awesome. It seems like everyday a majority of the group pulls out a personal best which is honestly so fun and cool. Shout out to the hotel for having very delicious food still. LOVE KELSEY

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blaaauuhggh

by iputthethuginnorthug March 10, 2010

So today was the classic 15k, and I skied slower than dirt.  I had kinda been lumping all my eggs into this basket for the whole week, and now that I didn’t come through I feel pretty deflated.   Nordic skiing is a tough tough sport and I realized that it can be strenuous on the mind as well.  To put all of your energy into anything and not see a return for your efforts makes one seriously question what they are doing.

On a much less dejected note, mondays GOLD STAR: Carson Lindsay, for pulling out of his @$$ an incredible sprint race.  and all of far west really, i was incredibly impressed with the whole team for going strong.

Mondays BROWN STAR:  first time this year i had to clean klister.  didnt miss that at all.

todays GOLD STAR: Russel Kennedy for POWNING HELLA NUBS

todays BROWN STAR: They gave out a bag of potatoes at the flower ceremony.

BROWN STAR 2: since we stole their flag, PNSA drew weiners all over our van.   revenge is a dish best served RIGHT NOW.  they better watch their backs

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Jo’s first impression

by farwestnordic2010juniorolympics March 10, 2010

delete edit Here is a quick update on JO’s from a coaches (jeff) perspective. The venue here in Presque Isle is really cool. It has a huge biathlon range, a really nice lodge, cool bridges over the trails, flags, wax buildings, and all of the feel of a world class, olympic type venue. The trails are very challenging, twisty, turny, icy, winding through thick stands of Birch trees. The snow quality is not what we get spoiled by in California but there is enough snow and the skiing is good. The event organization is great and the whole thing feels really cool to be a part of. The first two races. Hi it¹s coach Jeff again. The first two races have been classic races and it has been klister for both days. One interesting thing is that the snow changes throughout the day here but the same klister seems to work for a long time here even though the snow gets wetter and wetter. The coaches have spent a lot of time testing different combinations of klister and i think Far West has had very good skis so far. For kick we have used various combinations of Rode Multigarde klister, Rode Rosa klister, Swix KR40 in the morning, and KR 70 mixed in the afternoon. For glide we have used Toko HF Red, Swix BD 6, Swix BD 8, and covered with different florocarbons including BS 7, Super Cera, and Toko Jetstream Moly. It is a very serious game among the divisions to get the fastest and best skis and we all spend a lot of time testing waxes. So that is more than you probably want to know about wax! The racing has been awesome with some strong Far West results and the team spirit is really strong. The athletes are all getting along super well, like a big family and it really feels like when one Far West athlete does well then the whole team feels like we all did well. Things are good. Now its off to the skate races on Friday and Saturday.

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Keepin’ It Real

by fillyb March 10, 2010

Since it seems that nobody else is that into the blog thing and I’m trying to avoid homework, I’ll be holding down this whole blog scene.

Do you want the good or bad news first?

Okay, bad then:

Today, after what I felt was a decent if not strong effort in the 15k classic, I was devastatingly disappointed by my final result: 51st in a field of 85 or so. The worst part is that I have no clear explanation: did I start too hard? Have too slow/fast of a tempo? Did I just struggle with the individual start format as opposed to the planned mass start? Am I just not fit enough?

(the answers, as far as I can tell, are: probably, don’t think so, absolutely, and hopefully not considering that I haven’t finished this poorly in a 15k all year)

There are two possible categories for my result today:
1) A validation of my lack of fitness relative to the field and my general struggle with middle distance skiing. 
2) An anomaly caused by a variety of factors (don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to make excuses—my skis, as they have been all week, were perfect and anything that went wrong is nobody’s fault but mine). 

Now, dearest blog-readers (bleaders?) let’s put that bad news behind us and move onto the happy news:

Mercifully, there is lots of happy news: Maine is awesome, the weather and snow are beautiful, the volunteers are hospitable and the food is terrific. We’ve had some tremendous results—huge congratulations to FW medalists Katrin (10th in the sprint), Annika (10th and 9th in the sprint and classic, respectively), and Russell (3RD in the 15k! Big up yaself mah bredda!). 

It seems like the team skied well in the sprints, qualifying around 10 skiers for the heats. I personally was inordinately stoked on my result, 13th—reeeealy close to the semifinals and potential medal glory. Closer than I would have anticipated, at least. Hopefully THIS result wasn’t the anomaly. I don’t think it was—classic sprints are typically my best event and I’ve been training hard for this one (shout-out to Coach Ben for all the tempo-based workouts during our taper!). 

THINGS TO GET DID:
-Brainwash myself the past two races; after his first world cup gold, Bjorn Daehlie described it as “a great race, which I will now try to forget as soon as possible.” Dwelling on past Failures or Successes won’t allow me to focus on the future. 
-Start HELLA CONSERVATIVE in future races; just because we’re at sea level doesn’t mean that I can ski balls to the wall sprint pace for 15k. 
 
With this in mind, I go forth boldly to dinner. 

Thanks for caring (or not) about my bulls***, I really appreciate it.

Love,
-Filly / Beautiful / Alex

P.S. FW is still winning the yearlong game of Capture the Flag with PNSA. Oh, the thrill of victory.  

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10 Things I’ve Learned So Far:

by fillyb March 6, 2010

1) At about 2 AM after 18 hours of travel, EVERYTHING is hilarious.

2) Lewiston, ME still sucks. Sorry Kelsey.

3) Presque Isle is just like Truckee. Except for the terrain, the people, the town and the snowpack…and pretty much everything but the weather. During the first week of March every 26 years or so the sun shines in northern Maine.

4) We are exceptionally lucky (see #3).

5) There is only one mountain in Maine. I saw it. It does exist.

6) Nothing school-related, I haven’t touched my homework yet. Whoops.

7) The trails at the Nordic Heritage Center are superb…if you have the nuts to handle those turns. I don’t have a picture but from what I skied today the courses here will separate the boys from the WOLVES.

8) Despite the fact that there is only one mountain in Maine, there quite shockingly a f***-ton of hills. I’m about 87% sure that every hill in the state has been incorporated into the JO race courses. This means that they are very short and steep and in general pretty extreme.

9) The wifi in the hotel works on Miles’ bed bit not mine (about two feet apart).

10) I still suck at Halo.

Love,
-Filly

BONUS #11) To use Stefan’s highly touted rating system, Austin Meng gets both a GOLD and a BROWN star for bringing video games. Thanks you for your generosity/ensuring that nobody gets anything done!

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The first day(s)

by iputthethuginnorthug March 6, 2010

So today I finally arrived in idyllic Presque Isle Maine, after about 36 hours of travel.  The journey started at 6:30 yesterday morning, frantically shaking my room-mate out of his bed, hoping that we would make it to the airport in under 30 minutes.  After I frantically boarded my puddlejumper out of Bozeman to Denver it was relatively smooth going, although the time change sure caught me with my pants around my ankles….

As this was my first real travelling experience without the assistance of dearest mother, I realized how much of a pain in the butt it is to actually get all of your $hit together without forgetting anything.  Prior to this whenever my mom freaked out about getting everything together I just thought she was being a naggy windbag, but I now realize that she might have been serious.  So, to my own mother, THANK YOU (and sorry for blowing you off), and to all of the other mothers who feel this way, your children will get the idea. Eventually.

The trails here are actually (gasp) hard!  I think everyone was a bit taken aback at the amount of hills these Mainians (Mainiacs?) can conjure up out of a seemingly flat landscape.  Hard, but incredibly fun.  For lack of a better word, these trails are HELLA BITCHIN’!!! you can tell they put some time, money, and effort into the venue, and it shows.

So copying one of my MSU team mates, i have decided to create a system to reward good deeds and bad deeds.  So, with great aplomb I have instituted the highly vaunted GOLD STAR/BROWN STAR RATING SYSTEM.

GOLD STAR: Russell Kennedy, for finishing his lunch before me.  For those in the dark about Russell’s eating habits, he can put my Grandpa Tom’s fork speed(lack of) to shame.

BROWN STAR: No one really did anything stupid today, so the brown star goes to the rediculous distance between this place and Boston.   At 2 AM, overtired athletes have an amazing ability to turn anything they possibly can into an excuse for thumping each other into the cojones, including funny looking street signs.  It got rediculous.

Stefan

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Final Prep

by ski-bryce March 1, 2010

While most of the Far West JO team is in Truckee or Mammoth doing their final prep before leaving for the far distant land of maine, a few of the older Far West athletes are doing their prep “abroad.”  Me and Stefan are doing our final race prep in Bozeman, MT.  

The past few weeks here have been very warm and quite sunny.  The skiing has been decent, but the past few days the unseasonably warm weather has left us skiing in mash potatoes.  Additionally, the MSU ski team has been traveling around to races for the past two weeks so rides have been scare or non existent.  This means that to get out and go skiing Stefan and Me must first ride our bikes the two miles out to the ski trails.  This approach to skiing definitely has its down sides,  the most prominent one being the large puddles and mud swaths that now occupy the all the roads in and around Bozeman.  So every ski now results in us looking like we just finished a cyclocross race with our faces covered in mud and our backsides soaking wet.  Despite this unappealing  start to a ski workout Stefan and I have pushed on and managed to make all our workouts out at Lindley Park, which is basically just a field with a trail snaking its way trough it.  Boy does skiing the same 4K get really old really fast.

With four more days before we leave, Stefan and I are getting in our final ski workouts, waxing and preping our skis, and getting ahead on school work.  Then we fly out on Friday morning to meet up with the rest of the team to go and show the East Coast how you are really suppose to ski!

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