Italian national qualifier

Last weekend was the Italian Sci Alpino National Qualifiers in Padola and Passo Monte Croce. The racing was 3 days long, starting on Thursday and ending on Saturday. There was also a training day on Wednesday for the Super G which was on Wednesday, making the whole week really long. The trip from Cortina to Padola and Passo Monte Croce is 1 hour each way.

To be able to race in these Qualifiers you had to place in the top 10 of our greater region of Alta Belluno which has about 70 U14 boys racing in it.  I made it in on my points even though I didn’t do all the races as I was away racing in the internationals.  There were 60 boys in these qualifiers.

We had only been home for 2 days from a week at Topolino racing when I had to go and do these races.

On Wednesday we had a training day on the course where we got to race with bibs but no timing – just like in the World Cup.

On Thursday it was a Super G. The weather was fine that day. I had Guilia with me because she had the day off from coaching. The course was long but still the same as the last time I raced there 2 or 3 weeks ago. I did ok, but not as good as I wanted to – but still ok. I think I got somewhere between 20th to 30th. I know I could have done better as I’ve gotten into the top 10 before.

Friday was slalom over at Passo Monte Croce witch is another 45 min drive from Cortina. In the slalom I did much better. I still had a late bib – from the 3rd draw but managed to get to 16th – 1 place away from the flip but on the second run I managed to pull up to 15th place so I got in the top 15 in the end, and I was the only ‘3rd bib draw’ athlete to make it into the top 20.

Saturday was GS –  I had a better bib number than the other few days and I still managed to get 16th. It is only a one run race.  The course was down the same slope as the Super G but a few gates less. My coaches said I skied well on the steep and technical sections but need to hold my edge longer as I go round the turn.

I didn’t make it to the National Finals – I was close, but I have made huge improvements over the last two years and with lots of hard work,  next year I’ll be even better

Kitzbühel Alpine Skiing World Cup Racing

On Friday Dad, Tigne, Mum and I went to Kitzbühel to watch the mens World Cup. The race was a Super Combined which is  combination of a Super-G and a Slalom in two separate runs – but your times added together. The Super-G was first. That started at 11:45am in the morning and the Slalom was at 4.45pm in the afternoon. We drove up from Cortina in Italy to Austria especially for the race -Kitzbühel is a 3 hour drive away from Cortina so we had to leave early.  We got there with about half an hour spare and we had to find a park and walk to the slope where the race was being held. Giulia, our really good friend got us free tickets to the race because she was working with the US ski team which was very cool of her!  Before the race started they flew old fighter plans over us and then flew newer planes over us. The new planes went from 400km to 1000km in just a few seconds.

The super-g is to the left and the slalom is to the right
The super-g is to the left and the slalom is to the right

When the race started we found a great spot to watch the race from. We watched until approximately bib number 50 then we walked into town to get lunch. After the first run Aksel Lund Svindal from Norway was winning. Ted Ligety did better than last year – he got 2 more gates further towards the finish than last year before crashing!  When we ate lunch in town we tried to take as long as possible so we didn’t have to wait so long for the Slalom to start. It was getting dark and the temperature was dropping.  After we finished lunch we walked up to the Slalom very slowly because we still had time till the start.

The slalom was in the dark so they had these big flood lights pointing down onto the course which was cool. The course was also super icy so there where loads of crashes. Alexis Pinturault won the whole race so he is still the defending champion at Kitzbuühl. Aksel Lund Svindal crashed and hurt his knee. After the race we headed straight home – the drive was long but we got home early enough at 9 o’clock.

First Race of 2016

On Sunday was my first race in Italy of 2016. It was a Slalom race not a GS. In Italy it is usually a GS race as the first race of their season but this time it was Slalom because of the conditions. The night before the race it rained really hard. It wasn’t cold enough for it to snow on the lower slopes so it rained which was really bad. It meant that the gates would not stay in the snow.

When I woke up in the morning our driveway was covered in sheet ice. It was like an iceskating rink. Dad drove me down to the station where my coach Andrea was waiting for my whole group. After the van was all packed and every one was in the van we left Cortina to go to Auronzo, about a 40 minute drive away where the race was held.

We drove a lot slower than we normally do but we still passed cars at 100km/ph. Because of the time in the morning it was still dark and the ice was all over the road. When we got there we grabbed our gear and walked over to the chair lift where we put our stuff on. After inspection we were given our bibs. My bib number was 107 and Federico’s was 97 so I was only 10 people behind him.

100116-Auronzo-Keir-SL-2

The first part of the course was not rutted, rather it was smooth and straight.  This is how the course went; It started with a few gates that where straight then we went down onto the steep. Then we had our first hairpin, and after that it was rutty for the rest of the course.   We had a few gates that were wide then we had a delay to get us around the corner and onto the flat. Then we would gain some speed on the flat and go into a really turney section, then straight into another hairpin. After that we had 1 flush then another hairpin.  The last few gates where very straight which lead you to the finish.

My time was slow because of a big mistake I made which costed me about 8 seconds. My mistake was on the turney  part at the flat. I hit a bump that popped me out of the course and forced me to hike up to the gate I missed.  With a big time penalty I still bet people in the race so I didn’t come last which was impressive. After the race was finished I went and had lunch in the cafe with Mum, Dad, Pietro and his parents.  When we were eating lunch we watched the woman’s World Cup Super-G race and the mens second run of Slalom. Then after lunch we headed home – the drive wasn’t as icy as on the way to Auronzo.