Coronet Spring Training
We have just had the last few days of on snow training before a heavy dryland programme begins. The spring skiing at Coronet Peak has been, for the most part, particularly good for this time of year with great snow cover. Super G training from the top of the GS race start down through Robin’s Run was a lot of fun and the snow conditions on Race Arena have made for some excellent training.
Perisher Slalom Course
August was a pretty packed month of racing with mixed results but I was fairly happy with the way my health has progressed over the season. Races began at Cardrona in early August and these were quickly followed by the National Championships at Coronet Peak. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to hold on to my title this year with team mate Willis Feasey on top form, but beating me by just 0.11 second! After the Nationals we flew over to Australia to start the ANC cup series with the first races in Perisher. Perisher is huge, we had to take four different lifts just to get to the top of the race, and had to take a train (the ski tube) under the Australian alps to get up to the ski area. After pouring rain all night we actually ended up having a pretty nice day! The slalom races were a bit of a lucky dip with the top guys finishing way off the pace with the crumbling snow deteriorating quickly. I was pretty happy to have made a result in the first GS with 17 points in spite of the challenging conditions. Lots of bad weather and poor snow conditions saw the second GS postponed a couple of times and moved on to follow the ANC races being held at Coronet Peak at the end of August. .
ANC/Winter Games Slalom, Coronet Peak
On arriving back home, it was straight into another five days of racing the Winter Games/ANC Cup series, a day off and then races for the season finished with a slalom and giant slalom at Treble Cone (4th, 5th September) along with plenty of fresh snow to make it a little more challenging. Managed to pick up 3rd place in the slalom amongst some stiff competition so it was a good way to finish off the race season.
Coronet Peak GS Race
Pre Race Warmup Photo Cred: Philip Green
View from Rocky Gully over Lake Wakatipu
We are now into a heavy dryland programme for the next few weeks before a final block of on snow training at Cardrona. Spring is definitely here with warmer temperatures and hayfever season about to kick off.
(National Champs Slalom podium. ANC Cup series Yellow bib presented by Ken Read)
Start of season training at Coronet Peak has been going well with good snow cover and mostly great weather. Crisp clear nights followed by bluebird days so far this week for some slalom training, although the snow has been a bit soft with ruts developing a little sooner than desired.
The previous week saw some more stormy weather but we got in some good GS training in spite of the really flat lighting. Training was cancelled on Sunday due to the mountain’s new 5cm rule – if more than 5cm of fresh snow falls overnight, no training allowed the following day! The team had our physical testing completed (thanks Ginny Rutledge at Wanaka Physio) and I’m fairly happy with my continued improvement and getting back to where I need to be. Working with Ben Griffin for dryland training and monitor health has been invaluable for keeping an eye on when I need to take a break and not become over tired.
The time of the year to once again to be hitting the gym – strengthening, building, gaining – physical and mental training for the start of the New Zealand season just around the corner. Bit of a shock to the system to realise how much fitness is lost so quickly when one has been crook and the amount of work required to build back up again. Many thanks to Alpine Health and Fitness for once again helping out with a gym pass.
Many thanks to our patron Darren Shand and to Nick Simmers from Adidas NZ, for teeing up a partnership with Adidas. I’m now fully decked out with physical training kit, including lifting shoes, indoor and outdoor dryland training gear from the best in the business. Thanks guys, awesome gear! Really enjoying making good use of it all.
SKEGGS FOUNDATION – many thanks once again to the Skeggs Foundation for their continued support in assisting with funding towards my ski racing dreams.
Super G Start, Aspen
After a great taste of summer, it was straight into race mode when we got back to Colorado. On leaving Queenstown, travelling roughly 24 hours solid and a quick afternoon free ski at Winter Park, we raced the following two days in two giant slaloms. I had a couple of good runs, unfortunately not in the same race. From Winter Park, we moved on to Aspen where teammates Willis and Nick went into speed mode with some downhill training and races (and podiumed) while I got in some great gs and super g training. The downhill races were followed up by two super g races where I picked up a couple of podium spots (3rd & 2nd) as well as getting some good point results. Nick picked up 2 golds. I was lucky enough to stay with friend Bobby Moyer while in Aspen – many thanks to Bobby and family!
Super G podium
After packing up and heading out, we are now in Eldora, (about four hours drive from Aspen) for a slalom and three GS races – interesting start list being a University race as they have seed points within FIS points. These will be our final races before heading on to Beaver Creek for the World Ski Championships!
We are coming to the finish of our New Zealand season after some great races at Coronet Peak. The finals of the tech series of ANC Cup races saw perfect weather (although just a little warm!) blue skies, and the snow held out over the four days. There were some top international athletes with a similar start list to the ANC races in Hotham including Adam Zampa in bib 1, four days in a row.
View from the race course over Wakatipu Basin
The races kicked off with two days of giant slalom and with my ANC points I started in a good position. I scored a points result day one with a top second run but made a few mistakes day two. This was followed up with two days of slalom, again with some good results but just a few too many mistakes. All up though, my technique is getting more solid all the time and I feel I’ve made some good gains this season. For the overall ANC Cup series I won the yellow bib for slalom. Unfortunately the speed races at Mt Hutt where all canceled due to snow conditions.
Still a little more on snow training to be had over the next couple of weeks as well as getting into more dryland training before leaving to Colorado at the start of November.
On another note, our NZ Ski Team have started a Supporters Club and have held our first evening last week in Queenstown with another to be in Christchurch 18th September. Take a read and if you would like to show your support, drop Hamish Edwards a line firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s been great to catch up again with friends from all around the world and be able to take some time out for the occasional game of frisbee golf in our beautiful part of the country.
After some less than desirable snow conditions and weather leading up to the National Championship races, it was great to begin to excellent conditions on the 20th August with the giant slalom. Had a fast second run but it wasn’t quite enough to pull away from the faster first run from team mate Willis, so came in at second place. Amazing weather and great conditions continued for the slalom race on the 20th and I took out the National Champion title for the third year running. Take a look at the great conditions and some of the athletes at the slalom race (I’m bib 2) in this video from Snowsports NZ.
Slalom podium – Nick Prebble 2nd, Adam Barwood 1st Willis Feasey 3rd.Giant Slalom Podium – Adam Barwood 2nd, Willis Feasey 1st, Nick Prebble 3rd
The next series of races which are for the ANC Cup start on the 25th August at Mt Hotham, Australia so we depart this morning for Melbourne.
The start of the season has definitely had some challenging weather and snow conditions. The first races of the season were to be the Wanaka Tech Series with two days at Cardrona and two days at Treble Cone from 31st July – 5th August, unfortunately these have been postponed. After a lot of heavy rain, warm temperatures and gale force winds the only race completed was one women’s slalom at Cardrona. Fortunately the temperatures have dropped considerably and we’ve had a slight top up of fresh snow together with many snow guns blazing so training at Coronet Peak is still going well.
Bode Miller on Easy Rider, Rocky Gully
We have been sharing the slopes with some of the American team including Bode Miller and Mikaela Shiffrin. Some good double training blocks at Rocky Gully of GS and slalom.
Race Arena, Rocky Gully