Thursday, December 07, 2006

close, but no cigarillo

First race of the young season today in Breckenridge, Colo. We raced slalom first and I've been feeling pretty positive about my slalom these days, so I felt a lot of pressure from myself to perform well. On the first run I totally did, winning the run by about a second. I didn't make any real mistakes, but I didn't feel outstanding either so it was a nice result to beat some of my perennial rivals like Tyler and CDY.

I'd only been in that position after the first run once or twice before, and it's tough. It's way too easy to start picturing myself on the podium when the race is only halfway over. I had to keep refocusing myself over and over again as I waited a couple hours for my second run. Sixteen male monoskiers had finished the first run, which meant that that after the top fifteen were reversed to determine the second-run start order I'd be starting second-to-last — way too much time to sit at the top and think about how I could win, how I could crash, and that I really had to pee. When I finally pushed out of the gate I skied just as well as I had in the first run until I got to the course's only flush. I bobbled coming out of it, and while I recovered almost immediately, I had lost a little bit of momentum. The rest of the run was smooth, but when I crossed the line I knew I had given too much away. Sure enough, Tyler beat me by 0.4 seconds or so.

Despite that, I certainly learned something today about being in the lead, and I was stoked about my skiing.

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