March 22, 2008
US Nationals-2 down, 1 to go
The races at US Nationals are almost over. Today's Mass Start will finish off the competition and then we'll be off to Vancouver for Canadian Nationals. Overall I've been happy with my races so far. The courses here at Mt. Itasca, MN are in great condition and challenging, but very fun to ski. It's been fun to get to see some people who I haven't seen since the beginning of the season and get to race against a couple of World Championship team members.
Thursday was the 7.5K sprint race. I was pretty nervous going into the race and it took me the first lap to ski into the race. Clean shooting in prone and good skiing in laps two and three helped me to a 4th place finish (3rd American) despite three misses in standing.
Friday was the 10K pursuit format (a pursuit style start-based on our sprint results-but an individual result). I was in a much better place mentally for this race. I was very relaxed and ready going into the race so was able to ski well right from the beginning. I had only 1 prone penalty (in my first stage) and three standing (1 and 2) penalties. I ended up 3rd (2nd American), lossing out only to one World Championship team member and a former Belarusian world cup athlete. I also had the best shooting of the day, which I was very pleased with.
Today's Mass Start will wrap up competition here. I think my races thus far have been good, and hopefully I can end on a high note with the last race today!