Tagged ‘World Cup Finals’

A Season Like No Other!

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The World Cup Finals were held in Thyon, Switzerland. The GB Telemark Ski Team included Alec and Colin Dixon, Timote (Tim) Gough and I for this event. Our injured team-mate, Sissi Compton, turned up to show her support and Irish athlete, Max Screawn, joined us throughout the duration of these races. The racing kicked off with a grueling Classic where I finished in 4th, Alec in 21st, Colin in 20th, Tim in 19th and Max unfortunately did not finish (DNF).

The following day and subsequently the final World Cup day (as the Parallel Sprint was unfortunately cancelled due to poor weather conditions) was the Sprint event. Here I placed 4th again, Alec in 20th, Colin and Tim unfortunately did not finish (DNF) and Max in 18th place.

I finished 5th this season in the overall World Cup ranking; 4th in Classic, 5th in Sprint and 7th in Parallel Sprint. It was not my best season but its all part of the game that is sport!

Then the snow began to fall (hence the cancellation of the last race) as we made our way to the World Championships in Melchsee-Frutt, Switzerland. Originally the event was meant to be held in Murren (also Switzerland) but they were eventually unable to hold the event due to reasons related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

We enjoyed a few powder days before racing again, not ideal race preparation but the good news was that everyone was in the same boat.

The week also included the World Junior Championships (WJC), as well as the World Championship races. The first event was the WJC Sprint where Tim finished 12th and Max in 9th place. The seniors went up to help slip the course; this is part of the true telemark spirit.

The first World Championship race was the Sprint, I finished in 7th, Alec in 11th, Colin in 18th, Tim in 19th and Max in 12th place. This is a career best for Max, Colin and Alec Dixon, and from Alec – the best ever finish in a Sprint from a British man on the world stage.

Following the Sprint, we had a qualification run for the Parallel Sprint and here, I qualified in 3rd with a solid run. I eventually finished in 5th after being knocked out by silver medal winner Beatrice Zimmermann (SUI) in the semi-finals.

Alec finished in 13th, Colin in 17th, Tim in 15th and Max in 14th place. Tim and Max also competed in the WJC placing 11th (Tim, after a huge crash) and 10th (Max, after a close race).

The last race, the Classic, included two skate sections and really finished off the racing in style. I finished 5th, Alec in 11th and Colin in 12th place, both results are career best finishes in Classic for the boys! In the WJC Tim finished in 12th and Max in 8th respectably.

These were not quite the results I was hoping for, it has been a difficult season in so many ways but as always it is a pleasure to spend time on snow and even better to compete, especially with all that is going on in the world right now.

Our training buddies, the French, are losing their coach Julien Annequin. He has retired and is passing the baton to former racer, Antione Bouvier, who I am sure will also do a great job. Julien, or Pingu as I call him, will be very missed.

Now time to rest, and take stock of the season. As always, thank you to everyone making it possible, those people include team and personal sponsors, coaches and team, team-mates, committees, organisers, federations, friends and family.

A special shout out to coach, Sebastien Mansart, and his girls for allowing me to stay with them for several months, and to my boyfriend, Will, for taking a massive risk by joining me this winter.

I feel I have learnt so much, both on and off my skis. Who knew there was so much soul searching, work and investment involved in chucking yourself down a mountain.

World Cup Finals and World Championships

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The final round of World Cup racing was held in Thyon, Switzerland. Thyon is renowned for its punishing Classic race and yet again, this year was no exception. There were two other Brits competing; Louis Hatchwell and Sion Bingham. Louis scored a personal best result finishing in 15th place which is a huge achievement after many difficulties with equipment this season. Sion finished in 22nd place. I came 5th to therefore claim a 4th place in the overall World Cup Classic ranking, which is another personal best result.

Louis on course (Photo credits and thanks to GORAN KROSELJ)

Louis on course (Photo credits and thanks to GORAN KROSELJ)

On day two, we competed in the Parallel Sprint event. I qualified in 3rd position and retained this place after racing Beatrice Zimmermann (SUI), Amelie Reymond (SUI) and Guro Kjolseth (NOR) in the head to head heats, achieving my 6th World Cup podium finish. Louis and Sion both finished in 17th position. My overall World Cup Parallel Sprint ranking is now 5th position.

My 6th podium finish in Thyon, Switzerland

My 6th podium finish in Thyon, Switzerland

The final Sprint race was unfortunately not such a success after crashing in the first run, Louis finished in 29th and Sion in 27th position. Yet again, I finished 5th in the overall World Cup Sprint ranking and moved up to a personal best overall World Cup ranking of 4th place. Louis Hatchwell, the only other Brit to complete the entire World Cup circuit, climbed up to achieve a world ranking of 24th position, also a huge improvement from last season.

After a short break, the telemark community travelled on to La Plagne/Montchavin, France for the FIS World Championships. This is a race held once every two years which can also determine the world’s best skiers and is considered as the most important ‘one-day’ event in the telemark calendar. From Great Britain, the other athletes competing included Louis Hatchwell, Sion Bingham, Alec Dixon and Naila Cardwell. This event has a different feel to it – bigger and more prestigious including a spectacular opening ceremony, more media promotion and the highest quality and largest field of athletes competing.

The nations preparing for the opening ceremony in Montchavin

The nations preparing for the opening ceremony in Montchavin

The GB Telemark Ski Team with the Czech Telemark Ski Team

The GB Telemark Ski Team with the Czech Telemark Ski Team being serious as always…

On stage at the World Championship opening ceremony

On stage for bib collection at the World Championship opening ceremony

Fireworks

Fireworks at the World Championship opening ceremony

The Championships kicked off with the Team Parallel Sprint where we (Louis, Sion and I) were matched against the formidable German team. The Germans skied fast and took the win, going on to finish in 3rd place behind Switzerland and Norway.

The second day of racing was the (individual) Parallel Sprint. I qualified in 4th position and went on to finish 5th after losing out to Beatrice Zimmermann (SUI) who eventually took the bronze medal. Naila Cardwell skied well and finished in 9th position.

The race piste in La Plagne

The Classic race piste in La Plagne

Day three was the Classic event which contained a very long giant slalom and two skating sections. I am very proud to say I finished on the podium with a bronze medal. Naila finished in 17th, Louis in 22nd and Sion in 31st position.

The Classic World Championship podium with (L to R) Argeline Tan Bouquet (FRA), Amelie Reymond (SUI), Jasmin Taylor (GBR) (Photo credits and thanks to Swiss Telemark)

The Classic World Championship podium with (L to R) Argeline Tan Bouquet (FRA), Amelie Reymond (SUI), Jasmin Taylor (GBR) (Photo credits and thanks to Swiss Telemark)

Enjoying my medal with my coach, Seb Mansart and team-mates (L to R) Alec Dixon, Louis Hatchwell and Naila Cardwell

Enjoying my medal with my coach, Seb Mansart and team-mates (L to R) Alec Dixon, Louis Hatchwell and Naila Cardwell

The very last day, the Sprint, was challenging for the race organisers but they did a brilliant job to run the race so smoothly. I finished in 10th place after collecting too many penalties, I gave it the best I had in that moment but it just wasn’t my day. Alec finished in 36th place and Naila in 16th, completing their first ever World Championship races. Sion finished in 39th position.

World Championship Bronze Medallist

World Championship Bronze Medallist

The entire World Cup season and World Championship races have been amazing. It wouldn’t be possible without my family, friends, coaches, supporters, team-mates, competitors and sponsors who make it fun, inspiring and just completely awesome – a huge thank you to all.

Next up, the final French Cup races and French Championships!

World Cup Round-up 2014/15

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Following the World Championships in Steamboat Springs, Colorado (USA), the World Cup race circuit travelled to Thyon and then Murren in Switzerland before concluding in Rjukan, Norway where I finished 7th in the Classic, 6th in the Sprint and 5th in the Dual Sprint. In Thyon, I achieved another 5th place in the Sprint race.

It was great to be joined by team mates Jasper Taylor, James French and Fred Thomas. Ex-telemark team athlete Jack Harvard Taylor supported and provided commentary on the live streaming.

(L to R) Seb Mansart, Jasper Taylor, Jasmin Taylor, James French, Fred Thomas, Jack Harvard Taylor

(L to R) Seb Mansart, Jasper Taylor, Jasmin Taylor, James French, Fred Thomas, Jack Harvard Taylor

The Murren World Cup event was a fantastic experience. I was joined by sponsors, good friends and the fellow Kandahar Club members who were all out in force cheering me on. The famous James Bond movie “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” was filmed in Murren and the Piz Gloria revolving restaurant overlooking the Swiss Alps was a spectacular venue for the post-race banquet.

The "James Bond" revolving restaurant over looking the three famous peaks. Once translated into English, they are called (L to R) "the ogear", "the monk" and "the virgin".

The “James Bond” revolving restaurant over looking the three famous peaks. Once translated into English, they are called (L to R) “the Ogre”, “the Monk” and “the Virgin”.

The Jump in Murren

The Jump in Murren

The tour then travelled to Rjukan, Norway in the region of telemark for the final round of racing – this is where the sport originated.

Sprint Race in Rjukan, Norway

Sprint Race in Rjukan, Norway

Jasmin Taylor (GBR) Vs Beatrice Zimmermann (SUI)

Jasmin Taylor (GBR) Vs Beatrice Zimmermann (SUI)

The Jump in Rjukan

The Jump in Rjukan

The highlight of the 2014/15 season was undoubtedly the bronze medal at the World Championships and with a full World Cup tour completed I’m looking forward to taking everything I’ve learned and building on this success for my 2015/16 World Cup campaign. Thank you to – my sponsorssupportersteam, family, friends and everyone that makes it possible.

The World Cup season is complete!

The World Cup season is complete!

If you missed any of the racing and want to catch up, follow this link.

Top 5 in World Cup Finals!

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The Telemark World Cup tour moved from Rjukan to Geilo this week, both in Norway, and I have recorded my best results in World Cup to date. The first of the 3 races was the Sprint. I was 5th on the first run and then started to feel poorly (stomach ache) but managed to pull through just in time for the second run. I was still at the bottom of the run when the first girl came down. Having just made it, I focused and gave it everything – I wasn’t feeling too strong but held on and managed to keep my place finishing in overall 5th position.

Racing in the Night Sprint

Racing in the Night Sprint

Approaching the Jump

Approaching the Jump

In World Cup, the first 3 are on the podium but the first 6 are awarded prizes. The photo’s below are from the beginning of the Prize giving ceremony and I was awarded a Geilo Telemark knife for 5th place.

Just before Prize giving Cermony

Just before Prize giving Cermony

Geilo World Cup Knife!

Geilo World Cup Knife!

The second of the 3 races was the Classic, the discipline I find the most difficult. I wasn’t so clean when skiing but gave all my energy and finished in 7th position, which is a personal best in the Classic for me.

Johanna Holzman & Laura Grenier-Soliget

Johanna Holzman & Laura Grenier-Soliget

The third race, of today, was the Duel Sprint. The course was a much straighter set on a flatter hill and the field were close in time. I tried my best, but wasn’t feeling so fresh in qualification this morning and could only manage 9th. All in all, 3 good days of racing and experience.

Our View from the Race Hill

Our View from the Race Hill

Duel Sprint Start!

Duel Sprint Start!

Now we are all heading to Spain (Espot) for the World Championships. I will be travelling across with the American Team and look forward to joining some GB team mates and everyone else there!

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