After a long flight on very small seats (Swiss Air), we flew into Munich and drove to Kirchberg, Austria. Our first day we had a day off and pumped some iron. I now look like Popeye... minus the spinach (I don't think I have ever seen it served in Austria).Our European Ski Room!Insulation... (08)
We then trained two days on the Gaisberg (meaning Goat's Hill (or something of the sort), but I renamed it ice berg last year. The first day we trained GS, then slalom. GS was a bit rough... it was the first day in a while. But it got a bit better and slalom was a lot of fun! That night Eve and I heard that we would get to race the night world cup slalom in Flachau, Austria. The next day we trained some slalom, which was amazingly fun again, packed up and drove to Flachau... taking the scenic route. We free skied on the race hill that night.The next day was race day. We got to sleep in and have a relaxing morning. We did a bit of an activation workout and headed out at 2:30. We did some warm up runs and then went up for inspection.
At the top for inspection...
After inspection, I had to wait inside the smoky (Euro cigs) lodge for a little while.
The race started at 5:30pm once it got significantly darker.
I started 71st, so I had a while to wait until I went. There was a tv in the lodge and we watched the race live. It was weird watching a world cup race live, when you still have to go down the exact same course a little later. We joked that there wasn't much need for inspection. The snow was in surprisingly amazing condition at 71. It had been injected, so there were no ruts, just a few groves. However, I did like the snow better in Aspen. It was icier and not as aggressive, and for me that is important.
Although the race was a lot of fun, I was pretty disappointed with my performance. I had been having a lot of fun training, just skiing. Seeing how far I could push myself, my line and my speed and still be able to pull it off. I didn't race like I have been training, at all. I went back to my old habits, which are not fast. (I think I finished around 50th.)
After first run, we showed security our passes and went to watch Brigitte.
Security checking tickets.
All in all, it was a fun night and definitely helped change my view of night slaloms. They seem like much more fun now and the ambiance is incredible.
Here are a few more picture...
Eve and I at the finish. Kate Ryley and Maddy Irwin were at the finish to great us. And Breanne Law and Sven came for second run.
The crowd watching the race is huge in Europe. It is crazy. When you walk into stores they actually show skiing on tv and newsfeed on the radio! But I have to say that Aspen was nice having friendly faces around!
The cats lined up down the hill for the whole night because they didn't have enough lights to light up the top where we freeskied down to the course.
Tomorrow we train slalom at Reiteralm, and then we leave right from the hill to Maribor (sp?) for one more World Cup slalom race on Sunday!
PS- Kaiserschmarrn is a traditional dessert here.... and it is incredible to say the least. "Kaiserschmarrn is a light, caramelized pancake made from a sweet batter with flour, eggs, sugar, salt and milk, baked in butter. " And served with apple sauce or a fruity sauce. Aka a taste of heaven!