Monday, 31 January 2011

World Uni Winter Games - Erzurum, Turkey

Well, first full day here today after a couple of flights over from Geneva, a tight connection in Istanbul (which we made but, apparently, our luggage didn't) and a late night.
The impulse athletes are having a rest and I'm looking after some of the Irish Alpine athletes here.
There's racing on at the moment but our guys aren't participating until Friday when the technical events start.
Unfortunately, a lack of decent snow cover is preventing any worthwhile training as the only decent piste is the one being used to race on so we're trying to occupy our days with other activities.
Tomorrow we should get on the hill above the Super combi slalom start for a few runs though.
The new ski jump towers built specifically for the event

The athletes village is on a huge university campus with most wintersports being represented. The Turkish seem to have spent a great deal of money in preparing for these games.
Hopefully, the snow will improve as the week goes on and we should get some training ahead of the tech races.

Saturday, 29 January 2011

Final post from the Welsh Champs!!

We've had the BASS races over the last couple of days and Impulse athletes have been very successful in these with podium places form the following over the two races:
Richard Goldsworthy
Elliot Simpson
Judy Reid
Max Wheatman
Mike Seaman

The camp in Les Crosets has been excellent with the races going particularly well despite the worry last week about the warm temperatures. It got colder just in time!
News is that the races will be the same time and place next season, so we'll be taking a group of athletes again to what is proving to be a very enjoyable and beneficial set of races.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Welsh Champs FIS races

The last two days have seen the Impulse athletes making some good point scores at the Welsh Alpine champs in Champerey/Les Crosets on the Portes Du Soleil.

Yesterday was the GS with nearly all the athletes improving their points or achieving personal best results. The weather has been great for both days with hard snow and blue skies.

Todays slalom saw mixed fortunes with two of our guys coming out in some tough courses but those who stayed in were rewarded with decent points results including 2 athletes scoring their first sub 100 finishes.

Tomorrow is the first of two BASS races which we're taking part in for race practice to prepare for the English Champs in a few weeks time.

Monday, 24 January 2011

Another Great Days Training in Les Crosets

As the title says, another great day. Sunshine, blue sky and awesome snow for training GS.
We had a slightly earlier start and ran through to lunchtime. All of the group started off a little rusty (it's the first time on GS this season for a few of them). But we were seeing some really sweet runs by later in the session.
All good preparation for the first race of the Welsh Alpine Champs tomorrow. 9am inspection with a 10am start.
This afternoon is taken up with ski prep for the morning, followed by a game of ultimate with the other training groups which should raise some banter.

Sunday, 23 January 2011

Great Sl Training Day

Today again saw low temperatures (very welcome) and sunshine. We were up on the same training piste along with several groups today.
Our juniors trained in the same course as Ambition (thanks Marc) for the morning, up to about 1 o'clock. It was quite a tough morning for the few that arrived only yesterday but there was some good improvements made through the session.
Tomorrow sees GS training in preparation for the first race (GS) on Tuesday.

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Weather Change Brings Great Training

The weather change has brought some great conditions with it for training over the last couple of days. We had light snow overnight on Thursday but the biggest change is the temperature. This has given us some great, hard snow to set and train on.
Yesterday, we ran GS with Dragons and the Welsh team in the morning and free skied the race hill in the afternoon.
Today saw slalom training, also with the Welsh in bright but cold conditions.
The rest of the training group arrived tonight so a full complement to train slalom in the morning.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

The Welsh Champ Races are Definitely On!

After a few warm days, winter is back! much colder temperatures and snow all afternoon.
We had a day off training today ready for when the other athletes arrive.

We went up on the hill today to check the snow depth on the race piste with the head of the pisteurs in order to ascertain whether the races can go ahead and the result is YES!
With the snow depth good enough on the race hill an temperatures due to remain well below freezing an even some more snow on the way, the races should run well and to schedule, starting on Tuesday.

For us, tomorrow sees GS gate training with Dragons and the Welsh Squad.

Snowy view toward the race hill

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

The Snow Arrived!!

Well, for a little while it snowed but temperatures were much colder today with cloud (and light snow) moving in and out which meant that, due to variable visibility, it was a slalom tech day.
We were on the hill for a few hours in very variable conditions visibility-wise although it got a little brighter for an hour or so this afternoon, so we nipped over for a few runs in Avoriaz and Lindarets.

No pictures today, every time I got the camera out, the cloud came in!!

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Champerey/Les Crosets day 3

Definitely an improvement with the snow and the temperatures this morning, giving us the opportunity to get some good GS tech work done before lunch, including a few cheeky runs in a course set above Lindarets, towards Morzine, by the local club.

The sun then came out and it got warmer again, turning the snow on a lot of the pistes a bit spring like and not really useful for training, so freeskiing across lots of terrain for a couple of hours followed by ski prep before dinner.

Monday, 17 January 2011

Day 2 Champerey/Les Crosets

This morning saw some GS tech training up on the GS hill where the Welsh Champs should be held next week.
The GS hill as seen from the GS start

The Snow was excellent this morning and great for running GS turns down that hill. We spent a couple of hours on that with video feedback then, after a short break, went for a bit of a tour. Over to Chatel, Avoriaz, down to Champoussin (very soft and patchy). then back to Les Crosets.

The temperatures are remaining unseasonably warm but a change is on it's way apparently. If the temperatures drop, we should get the races off with little issue.

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Champerey/Les Crosets for the Welsh Alpine Champs

We arrived in Les Crosets for a weeks training ahead of the Welsh Alpines yesterday.
The slalom piste is looking a bit sad at the moment but, apparently, the slalom is going to be held on the GS piste so hopefully it will be good.
Slalom piste this morning

Today was a free ski day and we travelled around a bit, hitting Avoriaz, Lindarets and Super Chatel. we didn't want to go any lower as it was spring conditions with temperatures above freezing for most of the day unfortunately. Great tanning weather but not so good for the snow.

Temperatures are due to drop later in the week and bring in some snow.
Tomorrow is a GS tech day on the race hill so should be good, til it warms up!

Saturday, 8 January 2011

End of the BARSC Champs!

No blog yesterday, unfortunately one of our athletes had a fall which necessitated a trip to Aosta hospital. Everything is ok and we've now left resort for a week off.
All in all, a good camp with several podiums from what was a small group of athletes.
Training recommences on the 15th of Jan in Les Crosets ready for the Welsh Champs the week after so probably no posts now until the 15th.
Below are a few pictures from the BARSC Champs, courtesy of Shana's dad, Danny.

Thursday, 6 January 2011

More success for Minis in Champoluc

Today saw the second childrens GS and the second minis race on the race piste above Frachey here in Champoluc.
Again, our minis did well with Abi Bruce winning the girls race. Unfortunately, Shana had a problem high on the course which caused her to lose some time which was a shame as she skied the bottom of the course really well.
The afternoon saw some light snow and more is forecast overnight so it may be an interesting slalom tomorrow for the children.

Shana (3rd) and Abi (2nd)

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

First Childrens and Minis Race of the Season

Today saw the Childrens and Minis GS race in Champoluc. It's an additional GS for the kids as the SG was cancelled and is therefore not the championship GS. This is pretty fortunate as the only child we have racing didn't have the best day but we can look toward tomorrow for improvements.
The minis on the other hand did very well. Shana Danenbergsons, who has been training with us since all week, came third and Abi Bruce, who has joined us after racing with our group in Les Houches, came second.
This makes 5 podiums over 3 days. Not a bad result so far, given the small number of athletes we're currently working with!

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Mixed Fortunes In Champoluc

Today saw the FIS slalom here in Champoluc. The weather was the same as yesterday (but a little colder!).
This meant that the conditions for the SL were excellent and the track held up very well.
We had two challenging courses and, unfortunately, run one saw only four of our six boys finish with Matt and Jack both falling victim the the fast rhythm changes of the course.
Run two started well with Max Wheatman going first as he'd made the flip in 15th place. he put down a great run until 6 gates from the end where he skied wide, giving us a bit of a moment but he held on to finish. Sam and Elliot went next but both struggled with the numerous rhythm changes and failed to finish. Ed followed and managed to finish, scoring his first FIS SL points.
With only 16 of the field finishing both runs, it proved to be a tough day. Max Wheatman was pleased to get his first place in Jun 2 of the Brits.

Max on the Podium

Monday, 3 January 2011

Good result in Champoluc for Impulse

Today saw our guys take part in the FIS GS here at the BARSC Champs in Champoluc with some success.
Out of six racers, five finished both runs with Max Wheatman losing a ski to a pre release on run one.
Of the finishers, all of the guys scored an improvement to their FIS points with Sam Stephens and Elliot Simpson coming second and third respectively in the junior two category.
The race ran pretty smoothly and the conditions held up well for the race, partly due to the fact that it was very cold.
Looking forward to a good SL race tomorrow on what is proving to be a good race piste.

The course, from my viewpoint in the trees!

Sam and Elliot with their medals

Sunday, 2 January 2011

Last day of training for the FIS races in Champoluc

Today saw another afternoons GS training in readiness for the BARSC FIS GS tomorrow. All 6 of our guys were consolidating their skiing and looking pretty good.
The race tomorrow should give our guys a good opportunity to improve their points and get better starts later in the season.
Checking out the race piste we found the snow to be in good condition prior to the race and likely to hold up pretty well.
Skis done, trainees asleep - hopefully some good results to report tomorrow.

Saturday, 1 January 2011

GS Training for the BARSC

Day 4 in Champoluc and today was as sunny as we've had. With the temperatures remaining cold, the training hill was in excellent condition for our GS training.
This is the first day that we've been able to set in the morning as the local club had the day off and we made the most of it, teaming up with another club to set  a 30+ gate course.
All of our trainees were ironing out little issues as this is the first GS training they've done since October so the morning was pretty productive.
Working with 6 juniors, 1 mini and 2 coaches proved to be beneficial to the athletes and the runs after our break were considerably improved from the earlier training.
GS training again tomorrow, followed by 2 days of FIS racing.

Anglo Scottish Champs Training

It was the last day of training in Les Houches for the Anglo Scottish races today and we have to say a special thanks to BSA for all the help in setting the early morning training up and bussing the trainees up so that the training could start before the lifts are open.
The coaching team of Colin, Will and Dave have reported good quality training for the past for days in readiness for the races tomorrow and Monday.

Good luck to all the Impulse trainees in Les Houches!