Back in New Zealand Training - Winter Games cancelled

Date: 6th September 2009

After success in Mt Hotham at the ANC Continental Cup SX events, I was back on a flight to New Zealand in time for the Winter Games SX event. The field was strong with the Canadian, Japanese, Australian, Spanish, Romanian, Ukraine, Swiss, New Zealand and of course British world cup athletes present. Unfortnately I brought the weather with me across the sea and the conditions were terrible. Snow/rain/sleet/wind/more wind/some more wind/no visibility/fog....all in all not terribly safe. On the training day the course was icy from the snow being blown off the top an the berms were full of fresh snow. There was no fencing as it blew away, and one of the top Swedish SX guys broke his leg with the varying snow conditions. Hoping it might clear up, we went out on the event day to very difficult conditions. We inspected the course but the light was so flat, and it was so difficult to see that it was postponed. The event was off and on about 5 times during the day, and after another inspection at close to 2.30pm, finally the event was cancelled. They tried to get the event off on the Friday but cancelled it at 7.10am as the conditions were the same. It was unfortunate that the event did not go ahead but the events team did everything in their power to get it off the ground, but the weather just made it impossible.

Although the bad weather stuck around for a couple more days, we had a great time none the less. Queenstown is never short of something to do. Once the weather cleared up, there was fresh snow everywhere, we got in great freeskiing, excellent training and was even asked to do a photoshoot for NZ Ski. After the mountains had been shut, we were up at Remarkables at lift opening time and straight up to fresh powder, chutes, drops and open runs. It was great, look forward to seeing the photos! We managed to get in a couple of good days on the course at Cardrona and also on the jumps in the park. Great company, great snow, awesome conditions, overall a top trip! Now it is back to Melbourne and back in the gym for me. I have successfully met the IOC criteria for the Olympics so now I just need to train hard, get over to Europe, ski fast and earn me a spot in Cypress!!!