Monday, November 26, 2012

Back on track- Ostersund, Sweden


Racing summer Deutschmeisterschaft in Oberhof
With my sis in Venice
Summer in Switzerland was amazing. I went on a lovely trip to London to ensure I was not illegal in Europe, had a great 11 day recovery week in Egypt (+45!), I visited my sister in Venice, and I of course, trained...a lot. The summer training was great-  a lot of passes climbed by foot, bike and rollerski, and a lot of smiles and laughs and wonderful times I don't think I will ever forget. I really feel lucky to have had such an amazing summer and if the season goes poorly, I know I enjoyed every minute of my preparation for it, and no matter what happens it was worthwhile.

Training is always hilarious. With a Norwegian coach, 3 Swissies, 1 Norwegian athlete and a kiwi athlete, we never really know what language we are speaking. It is a mixture of norwegian, swiss german, high german, english, romantsch, and probably chinese but we don't even realize it. Fortunately, we had no fatalities this summer, so I would say all in all it was a booming success. 

First ski in Engiadine
Mamma and Pappa Murphy came and visited me in St. Moritz for 4 days which was just great for me mentally as I had not seen them for over 6 months. It is amazing how a hug from a parent makes everything in life so much better. We explored Engiadine valley for 4 days together and then had a hilarious 'Murphy group mission' to Zurich in a little dinky-toy car with all of their baggage, plus my ski bag, rifle, and 4000 other bags. It was a comedy show.

Training on Stelvio glacier
Now, I will admit coming to the airport the next day I was a little frightened. I may or may not have had a rifle in Switzerland without the proper papers, and when the SAS staff told me to go to the zoll to get my rifle checked, my whole body may have been trembling slightly...but the man was lovely and when I showed him my Canadian rifle permit he seemed pleased enough. Then I ran away as fast as possible and boarded my plane to Ostersund, Sweden. I will also mention I am still able to buy Youth tickets on SAS flights so that was a nice ego booster.

I arrived in Sweden and was picked up by a great friend who I had not seen in 4 years. It is amazing how nothing changes with some people- You can be apart for so long, and then as soon as you come back together it is like you just saw them the day before.

Mum and Dad visiting Switzerland :)
After a great week training in Ostersund with my coach Vegard Bitnes...Yes, you heard me right, I have a coach! He is here with me until November 27th and I will say it is such a treat having someone consistent to zero me and be at trainings. Anyways, on Wednesday November 21st we drove from Ostersund to Idre, Sweden and prepared for the first IBU cup. It was exciting to be so close to racing again and to get that blood pumping again. I was remembering 4 years ago when I was last in Idre, my very first biathlon race for New Zealand, and I flew off the track and was carried back on my some burly men. This time, I did not fly off the track but the sketchy corner is still there and there were some amazing tumbles.

As the races were preparation races, I am not too concerned about my results, but let's just say the skiing was great but the shooting was a small disaster.  Just getting all those misses off my chest so that I have no misses for the World Cup races :) What a plan!

I am now back in Ostersund, which is in full World Cup swing! Very exciting to be back here. The first race for me is the Womens individual on Thursday, December 29th. You can watch it live on!

Lot's of love,


NORMA ammunition