I recently ran into one of the ITU technical delegates one day at school and he says “do you know what you should ask your parents for Christmas?... A bucket.” I then received this email with this photo, providing cold hard proof of why a plastic Canadian tire bucket should be put under the tree for me. Notice the simple instructions to help me get the most out of my bucket! I got 2 penalties this year in two of the biggest races (my first World Cup and U23 Worlds) I’ve ever done! It seems pretty simple to place a helmet in a bucket, but obviously I have yet to master the art of helmet bucketing. I asked the technical delegate what I did in transition and he said “ya you came in and attempted to throw the helmet in, but your aim was just way off.” This is really embarrassing considering I played basketball in high school and like to think of myself as a bit of a baller. But with my new Christmas bucket, I can practice all the time and redeem myself in 2013!
Despite my careless helmet tossing, I am really grateful for getting to race in Auckland at the U23 World Championships! It was looking a bit skeptical whether or not I would go to New Zealand because of an Achilles strain about a month before the race. Preparation leading up to a race is rarely completely ideal and we had to get a bit creative with training leading up. But I got on that plane to New Zealand and my Achilles was good to go for the race!
I deemed 2012 the year of the bike and what a fitting way to cap off the season on the hardest bike course on the ITU circuit! The 8 lap course featured three respectable hills, daredevil descents and technical corners which were not for the faint of heart. Considering I crashed twice last year at junior Worlds, my goal was not to crash twice- I would have been ecstatic if I only crashed once! I exceeded my wildest expectations and managed to stay upright for the entire bike segment. On the run, I actually felt pretty good for the first 5km and then the last 5km became survival. I finished 13th, which I can’t be displeased with for my first year of U23.
If I was healthy after Worlds, I was planning on running cross-country for the Vikes. However, I decided that it would be best to take a complete break and let my Achilles fully heal. So I decided to red shirt this year and put on my “I love mustaches” t-shirt for a good luck video for the Vikes:
I took part in selling Christmas trees to raise money for the Vikes xc/track teams and really got into the Christmas spirit:
Recently, NTC went on a road trip to Whistler for some cross-country skiing and snow-shoeing! We even got to shoot a gun at biathlon. Alex, Matt and I went on a gnarly cross-country ski because of a slight miscalculation. After mega ski, I made two pies for our Christmas dinner!
Thinking back to the naïve high schooler moving away from home last year, I have learned so much as an athlete this year! Thank you to my coach Carolyn Murray for helping me through the rough patches, her husband Dean for making me laugh and teaching me to make pie, Patrick Kelly for encouraging me to come out to Victoria and coaching me up until September, Steve Keeler and Vanessa Young for keeping me healthy, housing me and feeding me delicious steak, Kim Ward, Matt Rose, my neighbours Trish and Rob Blaker for our hot dog nights, everyone at NTC, Triathlon Canada, the Vikes XC team, Brent Fougner, Nineteen Wetsuits, Shimano, Oakley, Oak Bay Bikes, Lululemon product testing, Dr. Reed Ferber, CSC Pacific, CSC Calgary, my brother, my dog and last but not least my mom and dad! See you in 2013!