Vakava Team Photo

Vakava Team Photo
Vakava Racers at the Mora Last Chance Race

Friday, July 9, 2010

Time Trial #1

Every summer we do a series of 5k time trails as both an opportunity to gauge our improvement, and also a chance to get in a good, hard effort. The first time trails of the summer were this past Tuesday. They are always in the same location - a 5k area of road on the rolling hills in Afton, MN - and the format is: warm up, 5k skate, recovery, 5k classic, cool down. It is all self timed, individual start, and drafting is not allowed.

I started about 30 seconds after Eugene did, and made it my goal to try and catch him. Eugene is one of the new skiers to Vakava this year, and he is also relatively new to skiing in general. His technique is quite raw (although it has improved quite a bit already this summer), but he has a huge engine, and I think he is going to be much improved by this winter. I was probably a bit to excited to chase him down too quickly, and I started out quite hard. I made up 75% of the distance between us by the half way mark, but by then the 90 degree heat and my fast start was starting to get to me, and I spent most of the last lap just trying to keep the gap from getting bigger. On the last stretch of rolling hills I made a final push to catch him, and I think Eugene was starting to fade a bit as I was closing in. About 30m from the finish I was still 10m behind, but then with a ill-placed pole between the skis Eugene was sprawled out on the ground and I glided past over the finish line, completely drained. Eugene got up quickly, and with bloody knees and left elbow was not far behind.

In between the skate and classic TT's I was doing by best to recover and prepare to go hard again, but I was really feeling the heat. I don't think I have ever felt as light headed or jello-legged at the start of a time trial as I did in the classic portion. I never felt like I was able to give an all out effort or get any snap in my arms and abs, but I could go no faster. I think everyone was just happy to have stayed on their feet during the classic portion. Eugene, after bandaging himself up, gamely put in a great classic TT and he finished in the same time that I did. All in all a good start to the year, and some times to improve upon when we do it again in a month or two.

Skate TT:
Nate 12:34
Eugene 13:10
Paul 13:38
Jason 14:30
Dave 14:39
Kathleen 15:20
Michele 15:39
Brent 15:47
Cheryl 15:57
Bonnie 16:32

Classic TT:
Nate 13:39
Eugene 13:39
Paul 14:56
Brent 15:15
Cheryl 15:29
Dave 15:34
Michele 15:49
Kathleen 15:50
Jason 16:58
Bonnie 17:55

A couple of notes about the results:
1. Both Bonnie and Eugene fell during the skate TT.
2. Jason is brand new to classic skiing and this TT was his first classic "race" ever.
3. We brought along the MN skinnyski series team trophy that we won last winter. We figured that if Peter brought it all across the country to take pictures with it after his team won, the least we could do is to take an occational picture with it too (and send it in to be on the front page of

Kathleen and Dave

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