» Whistler, BC
Trav, Dave (Trav and my technician) and myself moments before the start
What an unforgettable week! My Olympic experience was full of delays, snow, fog, but most of all fun. It was awesome to be at the Olympics, especially a home one. The support from everyone was unbelievable even though I was just forerunning. I ran into a ton of people from the Ottawa skiing community while out in Whistler. A bunch of them were volunteers (working their butts off!) and some were taking in the sights and sounds of the Olympics. But everyone was really supportive which was awesome, so thanks a lot!
When race day finally rolled around the atmosphere was like nothing I’ve ever experience before. There were TONS of people at all of the viewing areas (7,000 in the stands!) hours before the race even started. It’s a pretty cool feeling when people cheer when you come through the finish.. of the inspection! Due to only having one official and incomplete training run, everyone had a chance to run from Coaches Turn to the finish. After that I had to head straight back up to the top because I would be the first forerunning and would open the Alpine events at the Olympics.
The view from the start on race day (20 min before start). Notice the line of people forming on the top left.
At precisely 10:20 the beeps started for me to begin my run. Leaving the start and hearing the roar of the crowd up there was something I didn’t expect and will never forget! I almost broke into a smile before the first gate (good thing I was only forerunning I guess). Since I was the guinea pig and the first one down, I found out pretty quickly that the jumps were huge that day. The track was way firmer and a little faster than training, but was also a lot bumpier. Coming through each viewing area I could hear people cheering, which is something I have never heard before. Coming over the last two jumps, which were massive that day, I could see all the people in the finish and was just awestruck by how many were there. As I came through the finish I was so excited to be there and that I had just been a part of the Olympics that I let out a scream and fist pump, which I guess the crowd liked because they went wild! I will never forget that moment.
A view of the crowd
So with that said I’m really glad that I had the experience of running in such a big event because of all the little things that kind of took me off guard. For example the noise, people, and cameras everywhere. I think the experience will definitely help me in the future and hopefully in Sochi 2014!!!
The volunteers deserve the biggest medal of all. It was ridiculous how much work they were doing! Even making snow-slides to clear the track. Genius.
A bunch of the speed guys training Super-G on one of the nice days
Trav and I had the chance to watch the women’s Super Combi. This is Vonn after straddling and a collective “oouhhhhhh” from the crowd. Just goes to show that anything can happen in this crazy sport.
After watching the Super Combi we went up top and took a 25 minute hike to find some freshies.
Todd Brooker hooked me up with some fatties for the trip