End of NZ season 2015

Adam Barwood Coronet Peak GS

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.

slalom perisher 22 aug 2014

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.  .

Adam Barwood winter games

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

Coronet Peak GS Race

Photo Cred: Philip Green

Pre Race Warmup Photo Cred: Philip Green

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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         overallbib

(National Champs Slalom podium.  ANC Cup series Yellow bib presented by Ken Read)

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Training Coronet Peak

Clear nights, many stars

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.

Good Morning Rocky Gully     Adam July 22

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.

Break Time

Winter’s Here

nz 24 june 15Training at Methven started with a blast of winter weather and some of the coldest temperatures around the area with the likes of -21°C.   Lots of snow fell and icy temperatures stayed.  After about a month of training back in the gym, we had a bit of a physical camp and testing in Queenstown a few weeks ago and it was good to see my levels increasing.  Not quite to the same level as this time last year but I am on track.

road    Twizel

winter whites

gym        Methven gym

The team started with a week of intensive physical training in Methven mid June, led by Ben Griffin where we all made some good gains.  Makes such a difference having someone so competent pushing us where needed – thanks Ben!  After a week of dryland training and a day off, it was time to check out the snow at Mt Hutt. Conditions were perfect aside from a few rocks – good snow cover and blue bird days.  First day up the mountain was a little on the cool side though at -13° C.

day 2 hutt

Mt Hutt – Nick, Jamie, me, Eliza & Willis

On snow training started with our coach, Nils Coberger taking us for a bit of free skiing and progressing into some stubbie training.  The weather and mountain were awesome –  many thanks to Mt Hutt for your support, couldn’t have asked for better conditions so early in the season.

Now back in Queenstown for a short block of dryland training again while the school holidays are on and then it will be back to training at Coronet Peak.

tekapo

Near Tekapo

 

End to the Season

It’s been a bit of a tough finish to my season, unfortunately.  Have just arrived home after spending five days in hospital in Zell am See, Austria.  Snow conditions haven’t been the best this season with a lot of races canceled, warmer and less snow – looking positively spring-like when we left

mutters by Adam

Race day, Mutters

March started with some slalom in Mutters with some pretty slushy weather and a couple of DNF’s.  We then went to a few giant slalom races in Flumserberg in Switzerland, Petzen in southern Austria and Hochficht, northern Austria.  In Flumserberg, the snow was a little on the soft side and very flat hill – I needed to be a couple tenths faster to make a result but managed to move from 30 to 16th both days.

Piesendorf

Piesendorf, slalom race

My last series of races were some super g and super combined at Innerkrems.  I had trouble with the super g, feeling crook and little energy, and was unable to start the slalom leg of the super-combined and progressively got worse.  On visiting the doctor, I was put into hospital on a penicillin drip for acute tonsillitis, but further tests confirmed I also have glandular fever (mono). Not ideal! missed veinThe nurse had a bit of trouble getting  the IV lines in,  went through the vein but eventually managed to get one in!  Breakfast wasn’t too bad apart from the gumboot coffee to start, but reduced to 3 slices white bread and enough jam for one, and the following day a bowl of warm milk with a couple slices white bread.  hospital breakfast

It’s great to be back home but it’s going to be  a long process renewing strength and conditioning, not to mention replacing the lost 6kgs. Thanks to my coach Nils Coberger for everything, and to teammates Willis and Nick. Thanks again to all my sponsors, supporters and family for your ongoing support and encouragement, every little bit helps and I really appreciate your belief in me. Also a big shout out to Dave Stewart, One Studio for our awesome gear! Time now to heal, in readiness for the coming New Zealand season.

World Ski Champs 2015

CTOS LOGOMany thanks to Community Trust of Southland for their continued support of my racing career – CTOS are an amazing team who support a wide range of activities across the community, including Sport.  This year they have helped towards one of my goals of racing at the World Ski Championships held at Beaver Creek, Colorado 2nd to 15th February.

Adam super g

Following on from my previous post, after leaving Eldora we were lucky enough to stay with a kiwi family in Edwards (many thanks to Kathy & Brett Derwin for your hospitality) for a week of training at Vail before moving into our accommodation at Beaver Creek for the World Ski Championships.

Super G postponed due to bad weather

Super G postponed due to bad weather

It was a very intense couple of weeks starting with the men’s super g which was postponed a day due to bad weather.  This was my first experience racing Super G at this level and on the “Birds of Prey” course which is considered one of the toughest race hills in the world but I really enjoyed it. The start was a really steep drop into the course on a slick surface. My skiing was fairly solid for the most part. Over skied it a little bit but my goals for the race were more about technique and experience than anything. Starting bib 57, I was pleased to finish and place 44.

It was quite draining having to race the qualification races with the high intensity of needing to qualify, on top of the high altitude and long courses and then race again the following day in the main event.  Four days in a row starting with the Giant Slalom. For the slalom qualifying race, I had the fastest second time which I was pretty happy about after a slow first run.  In the last race of the WSC I was skiing well but had a DNF in the first run of the slalom – super tough course, 73 gates of steep and icy and the snow started to fall fairly heavily.  Before the snow, the weather had been particularly warm with almost spring like conditions. It was a tough WSC set of races, but I will take away some valuable experiences as we continue with our training and races in Europe.      Enjoy a few images from the races.

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Opening Ceremony with the kiwi flag.      Qualification GS course at Golden Peak

P1000691       P1000757

Course set by Nils Coberger.       Course inspection on Birds of Prey

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Looking down into the stadium at Red Tail, Beaver Creek

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Waiting in the finish area for the top 25 athletes – qualification criteria

Training Vail

Training in Vail

dirty dog sunglasses

Took a little time out from training while we were at Vail to do a bit of a photo shoot for Dirty Dog Sunglasses – had a lot of fun with some great weather and snow conditions.

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And this was our ride while in Colorado

Fresh Snow

Front yard, Dillon CO

Week one, Dillon

We have been in Colorado two weeks now and training has been going well.  We arrived to very little snow which has meant a variety of start times to get our turn on snow along with all the other teams currently at Copper Mountain.  Some mornings we’ve been up at 4.45am for a 6.30am start while other days it’s been around 2.00pm. Even though there is little snow, our training area has been very good. It has also taken a bit of time getting used to skiing at altitude (12,330 feet / 3750m at Copper).  A few days ago we had our first snow storm arrive which was very welcome, although made for some frosty training.

Crusty Colorado Nov 2014

I have been training predominately slalom and while it is early in the season, feel I am making some progress.  Managed to sprain my thumb in the first week while skiing through ruts but fortunately it hasn’t stopped my training.  Today we were supposed to have our first gs session but it has just been cancelled due to snow and lane space issues.

Snow has arrived 13 Nov 14

Week Two

 

 

 

Very lucky to have the HEAD technician working on my new boots, getting them fitted  this week.

HEAD boot maintenance

Boot fitting – Thanks HEAD

Beautiful sky

Another beautiful day

 

 

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.