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From WJC and U23's To Davos World Cup... CC Team

Wed, Jan  31, 2007 - By Pat Casey - TeamToday.org

The CC Team staff had planned to be racing at World Juniors and U23's today.  Instead, we are in Davos getting ready for a World Cup...

The original plan was for the Continental Cup Team (CC Team) staff to meet in Europe four days before the World Junior and U23 teams arrived.  We planned to take this extra time to clear up some details that are too hard to figure out from home.  The details of a trip like this are everything.  We needed to check out food options, training and waxing facilities, transportation details, emergency facilities, weight rooms, hotel rooms, etc...  We were planning on checking on all of these details while the race organizers in Tarvisio, ITA made their decision about whether they could even hold the races or not.

We arrived on Thursday, January 18th in Munich.  Randy Gibbs picked us up from the airport and we drove 3.5 hours down to Obertilliach, Austria.  Obertilliach was slated to be our pre-camp site.  Having a pre-camp site is crucial because the training on championship courses can be really tough, both mentally and physically.  At a pre-camp venue you don't have to look at championship banners and skiers all week, and you don't have to ski championship course profiles either.  Just good training and acclimating.

Obertilliach had good snow, the hotels were suitable, and the food was good.  Things were good until we found out that the race organizers had delayed their decision date until Monday, January 22nd.  (Just a week out from the championships.)  A Monday decision was too late for us...  The athletes would be arriving into Munich on Monday morning, so we had to decide ourselves.  We could bring the athletes over in hopes that the races would go off, or we could postpone their tickets and hope that the races would indeed be postponed.  We had to see theTarvisio racecourse for ourselves.

The big hill on the course 48 hours before the team was supposed to land in Munich

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Matt and I doing a little ski imitation at the high point of the course.

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The decision to pull the plug on the trip was not an easy one.  It is like gambling with the money of 26 athletes.  Every athlete worked very hard to qualify for World Juniors or U23’s… 

We checked with professional meteorologists, race organizers, FIS, and Tarvesian locals.  All indicators pointed towards a postponed championship.

The day after we decided to cancel our plane tickets the race organizers decided to postpone the races.  Then the snow started.

There’s nothing that will bring on the snow like canceling a set of world-level championship races.

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So, we’ve been taking in the sites, organizing other trips, and waiting…

Women’s World Cup Super G in Cortina, Italy

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The US women have been on fire this year…  Julia Mancuso won the race with Lindsey Kildow taking fourth. 

The atmosphere was electric.

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There was free housing in Trento Italy.  It just so happened that it was at Francesco Mosser’s Vinyards...

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The 5,000 person 70km Classic Marcialonga was going on so we went to see that.  Why wouldn’t we?  Skiing is a big deal over here.  This helicopter is following the leaders so that it can be televised.

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The men’s race winner during the Marcialonga. 

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Italian food is our hands-down favorite from the 5 countries that we’ve been at so far.  We can even do it on the road.

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Lot's of driving.  Randy's GPS shows where you are in Europe.  He has it set to display our car as a monster truck so that we don't get homesick.

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We’re ready to race now…  (Colin Rodgers in West Yellowstone.)

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We’re in Davos, SUI for the World Cup.  We picked-up Taz, Morgan, and Liz in Zurich yesterday morning.  They are really psyched to do the World Cup this weekend.   

We might be small fish in a big pond here, but we have an eyes wide-open policy this weekend.  The goal of this CC Team is to gain experience and to develop as athletes.  We are pumped!

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All in.

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