World Ski Mountaineering Championships
Janine Frost has kindly sent this report from competing in the World Ski Mountaineering Championship. I am looking forward (nervously) to competing with Janine and Kate Brown in the Mezzalama at the end of April.
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly…
Having only been ski mountaineering racing for 2 seasons (and skiing for 5), nothing had prepared me for the quality or quantity of racing that I encountered at the ISMF World Championships in Puy St Vincent last week.
The good bits?
- Skiing fresh powder in the sunshine on the 1385m individual race, which I had been nervous about taking part in as I’m really more of an uphill kind of girl! I was really pleased with my 29th out of 46 placing and 1 hour 52min time, and even enjoyed the skiing, “whooping” away as I sped to the finish in my racing tuck!
- Crossing the finish line in the team race with my new partner Ursula Moore. It was without doubt the longest most punishing course of the week and I was delighted to finish together, looking behind us to find we had narrowly beaten the Belgium team by 58 seconds.
- Failing to meet my ambitious goal of a top 20 place in the 610m vertical race. My favourite event, I had debated with the rest of the team all week whether I should race the day before or “save my legs” for the “Big Event”. In the end, I decided to go for a good overall ranking in the Championship meaning I raced 5 days out of 6, giving it my all every time. I cannot describe the frustration of having a lack of power in the penultimate race - “My Event”. It was tempting to give in to the pain, but I managed to finish a respectable 30th out of 40 and was thrilled to have “newbie” Ursula Moore snapping at my heels almost all the way. Good effort Ursula!
And the Ugly…
- Well, I may be the highest placed British Woman (currently 38th out of 111 in the world rankings) but my husband, Graham, reminds me that I also have the fewest teeth! I have had to cope with breaking another two this week – ouch! I just hope it hasn’t spoiled the team photos.
- The gastro bug that hit the British Women’s team beats the dental pain though.
- And I now have Bronchitis – oh well, back to long slow skins for the next two weeks and hope to shake it off with antibiotics. As Leanne says, “no regrets”.
My thanks to Alison Clushaw for teaching me the skills I needed to get through the downhill bits, the BMC for the opportunity to experience all the highs and lows and to Ursula’s Mum, Julia, for making me visit the dentist on the rest day!