Races have begun

aspen gs races dec 2014

Aspen GS Course

After some good training at both Copper Mountain and Vail to kick off the season, and finally some snow, races have begun.  With snow conditions in Europe not the best and World Cup races in the States, there is a large number of Europeans training and racing here, so the first at Echo Mountain (a night slalom) was a stacked field.  These races were quickly followed by the first of the NorAm series, again with an incredible field of top athletes.  Snow conditions were rough and icy for the giant slalom at Aspen. I started bib 57 and couldn’t quite find my rhythm on a very tiring course. Unfortunately, I didn’t complete both runs.  We then travelled back to Dillon for the slalom races at Copper Mountain where the chalky snow conditions created challenging grooves and fell apart quickly.  I was really pleased to have won the yellow bib from the ANC series as it meant a 31 start in a world cup field of athletes including Sweden’s Mattias Hargin on 2.8 points and ranked 4th in the World!  Day one didn’t go quite as hoped with a few mistakes which cost me dearly however I had a better second run.  Day two was a much better day and I had the 3rd fastest time in the second run; I was happy to finish 15th overall.

26 nov 2014 colorado

The Team. Fresh snow at Copper 26 November 2014

Just arrived in Canada for some more races with the first for me being a slalom at Norquay (6th Dec) where I took out first place. Several more races and then the NorAm circuit continues to Panorama, Canada, from Dec. 13 – 20 where there will be one super combined, two slalom, two GS, and two super G races.Norquay 6 Dec 2014

Northern Hemisphere 2014

snow planet 18 oct 2014

Snow Planet – Nick, Willis, Adam

The time from our last race until the start of another Northern Hemisphere season seems to have been very brief this year, with the visit to Auckland’s Snow Planet for some fund-raising and poster signing just weeks ago. Thanks to Snow Planet for hosting our NZ Ski Racing Club Supporters Event – it was an interesting experience racing the indoor slalom.  Great to meet all the young athletes.

Over the past month, my focus has been on gaining fitness and strength – it has been so beneficial having Alpine Health and Fitness supporting the Team, allowing us the use of their gym – thanks!  And the task of sorting gear for the NH season – thanks once again to POC, Australia New Zealand for providing me with helmet, goggles and shin guards.  Also got some excellent Avoca gear which will be great in the colder Colorado altitude; Merrell shoes and clothing also a very welcome addition.  Skeggs Foundation is a tremendous and supportive organisation who have once again helped me out with some funding for the coming season, along with the team at Just Dig It – thanks Blowie!  Many thanks also to Guenther Raedler – appreciate your continued support.  ZoBri Trust – great to have you on board again for another season. Hamish Edwards – truly amazing to have you along for the journey!  A huge thank you to all my sponsors and supporters who continue to help me to continue with the sport I love.

Adam Willis Nils

Adam Barwood, Willis Feasey, Nils Coberger (coach)

1st November and we have arrived in Colorado where we will be based just outside of Denver in a place called Dillon until early December.  Not a lot of snow on the ground yet, but hopefully we will get in some good training before our first lot of races.  This will include a couple of NorAm races before we head north to Panorama, Canada for some more races before Christmas.  The team includes Willis Feasey, Nick Prebble and coach, Nils Coberger and we will be joined by Australian athlete, Luc Chevalier.

First NorAms, Loveland

The first NorAm races of the season have just finished with two giant slalom and two slalom at Loveland with a tough field of top competitors (the first 50 in GS all under 20 points).  I was bib 65 in the GS day one and finished 28th but had a DNF day two.

Slalom starting 54  was pretty rough but finished 27th day one. The course first run was high speed and quick tempo. In the second run, it was tough light, a quick course and a lot of combinations.  The field is so deep and everyone is fighting to get a six point result with Norwegian skier Jonathan Nordbotten, who finished 26th in the Levi World Cup winning both slalom days.  On day two I finished 22nd and picked up some valuable NorAm points from all three days.   Overall I was pleased with my results although I wasn’t quite as fast as I had been in training.

SKI ALPIN - FIS NorAm Cup, Slalom, Herren

Enjoying a much needed day off before we start training again this time at Vail.

Farewell Panorama, and a Merry Christmas Austria

NorAm racing began at Panorama after just two weeks on snow.  During training I have been working to improve my tactics but in the races found myself struggling to put it into practice. I feel success at Panorama comes from having a very direct, tidy line and no mistakes! The slalom races were on a very steep tough hill, especially when starting bib 75. The first day of Slalom was difficult but it was definitely good training to be there. Two thirds of the field departed in the first run and day two was not much better.  I managed to finish 37th position on the second day

Noram start, Panorama

Start gate NorAms Panorama

Super G races were great, I would have liked to have been faster but it wasn’t too bad – picked up a few points both runs, need to spend more time training on SG skis.  Unfortunately with the GS made a few mistakes from start 71 but again managed to finish in 35th spot. Following the NorAm races we had a day off to rest with lots of ski preparation and packing our gear so we were ready to leave for Europe as soon as the last race of the next FIS series was over.  Two days each of slalom and GS which I again found pretty frustrating with too many mistakes.  My final day of slalom was a little better, skied to my points, so close!

NorAm GS day 2, Panorama

NorAm GS day 2, Panorama

We left Panorama and began the long tiring journey to Europe via Calgary, Vancouver, Frankfurt, Munich then driving on to where I am based in Leogang, Austria – arriving just in time for Christmas Eve!

Ski poles from Komperdell for Christmas

Ski poles for Christmas! Thanks Komperdell

I hope everyone is well and had a wonderful Christmas!