August 17, 2006

How not to race

The day began as usual, first lifts, up the 6 and then the 4, a quick photo of today's sky and then a warm up run or two back down to the quad.

AboveTheClouds.jpg

Today was a little different in that Ant and I went to do some good samaritan work with Mark. Mark had dropped a glove from the sextuple and wanted to try and get it back, but it was off piste, near a river, and he wanted back up in case he fell in... In the end it was unreachable and Mark didn't fall in and didn't need us...

Whilst we were off helping Mark the rest of the gang did a run on video on the warm up slope. By the time Ant and I got back to the slope Tano had put the camera away. My run down to Tano felt good, I didn't think too much and my legs worked well. Unfortunately I dropped my hands a little low, still, it felt good and I know I need to work on my hands.

Over to the drag lift to practice long carved turns, then back to the area that we warm up on to do some short turns with more exercises to keep our upper bodies facing down the slope. Some more video work and it was time for lunch.

We sat outside for lunch today, it was a glorious day and there was just about enough room for us all on the terrace. After lunch we viewed the video that had been taken over the last couple of days. Some improvements, some more problems identified.

MountainsLakesAndClouds.jpg

After lunch we did one run and then headed over to the slalom course for some racing. We raced twice, in pairs on the short, head to head, slalom course. I raced with Steph and the first time down we crossed the finish together. Steph had a better start than me but I gained ground later in the course. The second time down the two races before us had resulted in wipe outs as people were trying harder. Knowing that I lost time in the first section of the course I went for it, as did Steph. The first two gates were fine but I took the third one late and ended up low and out of the rut line for the fourth, I tried to cut tight back and make the gate but lost it as I bounced over the ruts and clipped the gate which sent me into a spin across Steph's course. This could have been a tactical move, but it wasn't, Steph avoided me and won the race. Previously both Paula and Katie had both wiped out and Paula managed to get it together whilst Katie was still sliding and ski-less and she went on to win...

The thing about my attempted recovery was that even if I had managed to make the fourth gate I'd never have made the fifth, I was so far off the line that I would have had to have stopped just past the fourth and restarted... So, today I learned that once you screw up in a race like that, you're done, and it's probably not worth trying to get back on the course as you'll just end up in a high speed smash... I tweaked my knee and ankle a little but they're fine now. I'm sure that we'll learn much more about racing at next week's race clinics in Esquel.

After the racing we skied down some bumps but my knee and ankle weren't really up to it so I took things slowly. A few more runs and we headed home.

This evening we had a briefing on the work we'll be doing in Esquel next week and then a bbq party to celebrate the 'a' level results that the 18 year old's had got and finally we played Louis' short film for Ryan (hopefully available on the web soon) and wished Ryan a safe journey home; he's flying back to Canada tomorrow.


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Posted by Len at August 17, 2006 10:52 PM | Categories: Argentina 06 , Argentina 06 - Photo Album , Argentina 06 - Ski Days
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