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A Vasa Letter from Justin Easter

Sun, Dec  31, 2006 - By Justin Easter

Justin is a Subaru Factory Team Skier and the Vasa 2006 50K Freestyle Champion

When we ducked under the clouds flying into the Traverse City airport I could tell that the new snow was welcome. It wasn’t hard to see the snow cover was a little thin, but I had been assured that the 2006 North American Vasa would go. After a bout of not being sure which races would happen and which races would be cancelled, the optimism of the North American Vasa gave me a great feeling that I was entered in a quality event.

While I was waiting for my skis and bag to arrive a fellow competitor noticed the Factory Team logo on my jacket, and struck up conversation. I had not figured out how I was going to make my way across town to Cherry Capital Subaru to pick up the car I would borrow for the weekend, and I was promptly offered a ride. Continued hospitality from the race directors to Tim Brick at Brick Wheels who offered me a place to wax the day before the race. All of this reception seemed to be nothing unusual to any of the fine people in Traverse City, and further made me feel comfortable in a new place.

With a little help from Mother Nature, and some exceptional grooming the course was fast and ready for the race. If you are thinking about your trip to Traverse City for the North American Vasa you can count on a fairly forgiving course. The hills are large when you arrive at them, but there is plenty of time to recover once you summit. There were plenty of aid stations throughout the course, and the company of the 25km racers during the final kilometers made for a truly pleasant experience.

Unfortunately my schedule has me traveling to Europe during the same time as the 2007 North American Vasa. I anticipate the Vasa will be a race that I will go back to many times after I retire from the professional skiing scene, because I have a host of great memories from Traverse City that I will certainly want to be reminded of later in life. Enjoy!

Justin Easter