second post by Adam
I felt really sore and tired but hoped I would feel better when I started warming up for the skate sprint. I went to start warming up an hour before my start, since I like to be more warmed up for sprints. I felt absolutely horrible and wanted to go lie down in the snow and bury my head. I was so tired that I unfortunately didn’t get a very good warmup. The sprint had a heat start and I had the outside lane. I had two people I knew in my heat, Everett Sapp, a friend from New York who raced for the Mid-Atlantic division at JNs, and Anders Hansen, a skier from Craftsbury who was a team mate on the New England JN team. I felt like I had no snap or spring and found it impossible to quickly pushoff and turnover fast. We double poled out of the start, I stuck to the outside edge to avoid the closely packed skiers. Several skiers got pushed together and Anders’ pole was stepped on and snapped just below the handle. He threw away the grip and skied to the outside edge looking for a pole. At the bottom of the hill, I was fourth out of five and didn’t feel able to catch up on the uphill. I stayed ahead of Anders on the hill, who had gotten another pole, and held fourth place over the top. The super short 1km sprint course went through a twisty downhill followed by an uphill finish. I stuck to the outside edge of the corners then cut in, slingshotting every single corner while the other skiers skidded around the inside edge. On the first corner I caught up with 3rd, on the second corner I passed third, on the third corner into the uphill, I slid by second and immediately exploded into a sprint V1 up to the finish ending up right behing Everett. I ended up second in the heat, 24th overall. Though it wasn’t as good as my other races, I don’t consider myself a sprinter.
I felt like I wanted the racing to end at the start of the 3rd day. Due to my performances in the individual skate and mass start classic, I was put onto N.H.’s first relay team. The conditions were suited to me on friday, and N.H.’s best 3 skiers were taken down in a crash on Saturday morning, and a bunch of N.H. skiers beat me in the sprint so I was doubting whether or not I should be on the first relay team. However, I decided to go for it because there were skiers who needed me to do well. My team (Sarah N., Nate, Tessa, and me) skied well and put me in a position with a gap ahead of me, and a gap behind me. I skied fast out of the start, but wasn’t able to catch anyone the entire race, partially due to the fact that they all had leads on me. The skier right in front of me was Zane Fields, who made the New England JN team as a J1 and won the 5km skate who I unfortunately couldn’t catch. I managed to hold my position without letting anyone passing me then sprinted into the finish.
I used a ton of energy over the weekend and was exhausted afterward, but thought that it was a good way to end off my racing season. It was fun to get to race the J1s, as well as to get another 4 races in before the end of the season.