Saturday, October 17, 2009

Tiffany 17th; Eric 22nd in Short Track

It's no secret, neither Tiffany nor Eric like the short track discipline. So after the grueling day both experienced on the mountain in the cross country event yesterday, they were most certainly not looking forward to the equally challenging short track course at Northstar.

They both put in great efforts in spite of the soreness in their bodies. It was exhilarating to hear Tiffany called to the start line first as the Midwest Conference champion. The exhilaration soon faded as the reality of the opening climb set in, followed be a nasty crash on the downhill section. In the end, Tiffany lasted only three laps before being lapped by the eventual winner, Kay Sherwood of Colorado College. Still, she wasn't the first to be removed from the race and placed 17th.

Having a good starting position would be key in the short track as the racers immediately climbed up a road of loose gravel. Eric was fortunate to have a place right up front, but like Tiffany, it didn't do him much good. He struggled up the long climb and the downhill section was too short for him to effectively use his skills to gain ground on the leaders.

Those leaders would eventually lap him, and Eric was pulled from the race with three laps to go. He finished in 22nd place among the 40 starters.

He hoped to do even better in the four cross event, but during his qualifying run, he dropped the chain and limped across the finish line. His run time was 35th best. Only the top 32 qualified for competition. Eric's time was 3/10ths of a second shy. Them's the breaks. You hope such bad luck doesn't occur during the biggest race of the year ... well, for Eric, the biggest race of the year is tomorrow. The downhill is his favorite event, and I predict he'll come back strong tomorrow.

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