Friday, March 4, 2011

Lucky 13th, third time round!

Today I finished in 13th place, in the Grindelwald World Cup, Switzerland.  It is the third time I have finished in lucky 13th this season. Lets hope that things happen in three so I can break this trend and finish in the top 10!

Yesterday was qualifications. The training day was cancelled due to soft snow, so basically we had only two runs to figure the course out before it was time to race. The track was extremely fast with some big jumps and few turns…almost like a downhill. Speeds were estimated to be around the 100km/hour mark., which is very fast when you have three people racing next to you!

I qualified in 13th position (out of a field of 30 girls), so I was happy to be well within the top half of the field. Top 16 women and top 32 men went through to finals the following day.

Unlike any other World Cup, the Swiss decided to do it in style and use a helicopter (instead of a chairlift) to transport the athletes to the top of the race hill during finals. The last time I rode in a chopper was three years ago in Meiringen when I injured my knee. It was a trip from the race hill to the hospital and all I could see was the ceiling of the helicopter, strapped into an ackea. So as you can imagine I was pretty excited!

The helicopter ride, although short, was a lot of fun. Flying through the Eiger and the Jungfrau, some of the most famous mountains in the world, was spectacular. It definitely made my day!

We are now in Meiringen, Switzerland, for the next World Cup. Again we have no training on the course due to warm snow conditions, so tomorrow is inspection only. Training is on Saturday and finals on Sunday. Let’s hope for another great result!

(Hitching a ride back into town with the Americans and Frenchies after training)

(Above the clouds in Grindelwald)

(The Eiger)

(Switzerland's most prestigious DJ)

(Public bib draw. Qualified 13th)


(Chopper rides for finalists)

(View from the helicopter)