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A busy time in Europe

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Okay I’m back. Sorry for the delay, but sometimes it can be very, very difficult to find a connection to the Internet. Not all of the hotels in the small ski areas of Europe are equipped with what you would call "up to date" phone systems.

Since my last column the holiday season has passed and a New Year has begun. My holidays went something like this: a couple of days off in Switzerland where I caught up on some sleep; I spent Christmas Day in a car driving to Austria for the races in Lienz; I spent New Year’s in the car travelling to Italy for training from Jan. 1 to 3. Things are busy as they always are at this time of year but I had an enjoyable time.

In Switzerland I spent some time in an area about an hour from Lausanne in the town of Roquemont, which is in the Alps. It’s a beautiful area. If you know Gstaad, it isn’t far from there. The ground was covered in snow and I had a white Christmas. I went up skiing on Christmas Eve and it was absolutely gorgeous.

I also went to Gstaad to take in the sights. It’s very posh and ritzy, filled with ladies in fur and the latest fashions. I got some great pictures!

On the skiing side of things it has been lots of training and racing. I’ll be honest, it has been tough on the road for me recently as it always is when you’re not getting the results you want. As a team we are learning to take it patiently while continuing to work harder than ever to reach our goals and get the results.

I have a message I would like to share. It came from a friend a couple of days ago over text messaging and it went something like this:

"Remember, the most meaningful triumphs are through struggles – learn and accept the process. It should not be easy because then anyone would do it."

It takes hard work and constant focus and I know that’s what I’ve got along with great support from the best coaches and staff. Soon I’ll be heading home for a week of rest and recovery but I still have a few more races at the end of this week in Germany.

I am definitely looking forward to getting home for some good skiing – someone (my mom) has been rubbing it in my face about the endless powder skiing Whistler’s getting every time I call home.

In other news, a brother of mine has been kicking some butt in the recent Nor Am races out in Maine. Michael won the first slalom race and finished second the following day. On both days he made FIS points, which moved up his world ranking considerably.

He will now fly to Europe and race in the next World Cup slalom in Chamonix, France.

Racing with him will be Thomas Grandi, J.P. Roy and Julien Cousineau.

In the women’s Nor Am races in Quebec our development team was racing strong. Brigitte Acton won two slalom races and Anna Goodman lead the first GS run by 0.80 seconds and was in front on her second run when she went off course just gates from the finish.

The women’s speed team is now in Veysonnaz, Switzerland for the upcoming downhill and super G races. They are doing well and are confident. They have a full month ahead, with races every weekend.

That’s all the news. I will be in touch. For now, enjoy the snow and the New Year. It’s 2004!

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