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Technical teams ready for Bormio



The 2005 FIS World Alpine Championships in Bormio, Italy have been underway for the past two weeks. The first events started on the 29 th of January with the men’s and women’s super G races. The racers then switched into downhill mode for the remainder of the week and finished off with a weekend of combined events. This week the giant slalom and slalom events are running through to the 12 th of February. It’s a full two weeks of racing!

The final event of the championships is a new one. It’s a team event where each nation chooses four athletes, two men and two women, to compete in both super G and slalom. I believe only two of the racers have to do both events, the other two can choose to only do one. The goal is to have your country win every event to end up with the least points at the end.

The rules go something like that, I may have missed a few details, but that’s the basic outline of the event. An event like this has never been held before and hopefully it will be one that they will bring back for future championships. It should be exciting.

So far at the championships the Canadians have posted some top-15 results, but unfortunately haven’t seen any podiums. On Tuesday the women raced the giant slalom and were sitting in good positions after the first run. Gen Simard was fifth, Allison Forsyth 11 th , and Brigitte Acton in 13 th . In the second run the girls gave it all they had and went for the podium. But, when you risk it all sometimes you strike out. Both Ally and Brigitte fell and didn’t finish and Gen made some mistakes that put her back into ninth. And that, my friends, is racing!

Still to come this week are both slalom events and both of the men’s technical events. I’m personally crossing my fingers for my teammate Thomas Grandi to stand on top of the world championship podium. We will see what happens.

As some of you may know, I’m not competing at the world championships. I didn’t make the qualifications that were set out for me and therefore did not race in the GS or the slalom. Instead I will race the Europa Cup circuit over the next few weeks. I took a week off and got some much needed freeskiing in Whistler and am now back over in Europe to race.

I would, of course, rather be at the worlds, but I didn’t qualify. I have dealt with it and am excited to be back and racing in the Europa Cups. I want to be in the world championships when I am ready to win a medal and I am not quite there, yet.

In the next 10 days I will be in seven races and travel from Slovenia to Spain and Andorra. It will be approximately 1,700 km of driving, and that’s just to get from Slovenia to Spain!

Last week my brother was also racing some Europa Cups with the rest of his team. They were in Veysonnaz, Switzerland for a GS and slalom. Patrick Biggs, who has had some great results this season on the World Cup, won the slalom race and Michael finished eighth. With those guys, it seems that if it isn’t one of them at the top then it’s the other.

The men’s slalom team, after having four in the top 20 in Schladming’s night race a week and half ago, are going into the world’s with momentum. I hope they kick some "Euro" butt!

I am hoping for more snow to fall in Whistler so that when I return in April I will be able to do some more freeskiing. That is still a ways away, so until then I will be racing and enjoying being on the road with the team. Keep watching the results and I will continue to fill in everything that the results don’t tell! And if you have missed an article of mine in the Pique you can also go to my website, to get caught up.