After an excellent trip to the Rockies with Sarah, this weekend was the Canadian Skimo Championships in Golden B.C. Dad and I drove up Friday with a stop for a ski in Rogers Pass and then met Nick and Paul in Golden for the race. Golden is a fun town and Kicking Horse is a pretty cool resort. Very well suited to holding a race like this
Saturday was a 15km race with 6000ft of vertical climbing. We were a bit unsure of ourselves in our first race ever but managed to figure things out pretty quickly.
Nick and I started off in a good position and were sitting in the top 5 but by the third (and biggest) climb of the day, the group of four that we were racing with started to pull away. We held contact with them hoping they would lose some steam but by the last climb, another big one, they stepped up the pace a bit as we started to fade. Nick broke a pole but still managed to give me a run for my money. We ended up in 6th and 7th place and only 6 minutes off the podium (in a 2:30 long race) and were the first two non-national team finishers.
Looking at my heart rate profile, it is clear that I started too hard. It seems like it would be tough to hold back early in the race when people are jockying for position but looking at the average HR for each climb I think it is much more reasonable to stay in the 173-179 bpm range and try to pick up the pace later in the race.
My tranisitons were fast even with the big skis and I didnt have any skin trouble during the race. My big skis were great on the downhills but a lighter pair of race skis will go a long way on the uphills. The homemade ski carrying pack worked but was not as efficient as a proper skimo pack. I was dressed way to warm and next time will dress more as if I am competing in a nordic ski race rather than a day of downhill skiing. With all these factors resolved and at least one race under my belt, I am confident I can shave a significant amount of time.
Average heart rate, average ascent rate, and total ascent for each climb:
Climb 1 – 185 bpm – 16.5 m/min – 107 m
Climb 2 – 185 bpm – 16.3 m/min – 119 m
Climb 3 – 179 bpm – 14.6 m/min – 518 m
Climb 4 – 175 bpm – 14.0 m/min – 343 m
Climb 5 – 172 bpm – 13.6 m/min – 214 m
Climb 6 – 171 bpm – 11.7 m/min – 289 m
Sunday was a team relay of 4 x 8-minute laps. I did lap 1, 3, and 4 and Dad did lap 2. We managed not to finish last. We packed up after the relay and managed to make it back to Squamish by 10:00pm with another 1500 km of driving for the weekend.