My athletic goal is:
When I was 14 I decided that I wanted to pursue skiing at a level that would get me to the Olympics. After nearly 10 years of training and competing with this goal in mind I almost achieved my goal. At the Olympic Trials races this past winter, I won the first of two sprint races. The winner of the second sprint was selected for the Olympic team and I was the only eligible alternate for the last sprint team spot. My training and planning for this race season have been strongly influenced by this result and from this glimpse of my potential I have a lot of confidence for what I can achieve this year.
To be a member of a National Development Centre like the one I train with in Thunder Bay, Ontario, requires a fee of $12 500. This fee covers all our training camps during the summer as well as all the North American racing trips through the winter. My goals for this year include qualifying for some World Cup Tour trips where I will need to pay for the travel to Europe for several weeks of racing. This will require a higher budget than I have planned for the past few years.
My first few years on a Training Centre I worked part time at a furniture store doing deliveries. Thanks to the support of Stonewaters sponsoring me from the sales of what was nicknamed "The Bob Couch" and very flexible scheduling for my hours, I was able to nearly fully support myself. There was still a cost to my training and I had to make compromises that lead to a fall in my expected performance progression. The past 2 years my parents have been my support and I can't thank them enough for standing behind me and believing in me as much as they do. This is a big stress on my family and I am trying to reach out to my amazing community of friends who have always shown interest in my skiing pursuits.
To be able to train without the stress of not knowing whether I can cover the expense of all the races I hope to attend and qualify for is an enormous benefit. It is the difference between wondering, "Can I go on that trip if I qualify for it", to "I'm going on that trip, when I qualify for it". The mental state makes a huge difference on performance, and money worries can be a large stress on anyone.
I will be using the funds for:
The expenses that make up my National Development Centre fee for this year are:
Equipment - $2 000
Altitude and Volume Camp - Bend, Oregon - $1 200
Volume Camp - Hayward, Wisconsin - $800
Early Season Snow Camp - Canmore, Alberta - $1 500
December North American Cup Races - Montana and B.C. - $3 000
January North American Cup Races - Ontario - $1 500
Finland Polar Cup Tour - $2500
I hope to break onto the International racing scene this year, the estimated costs of those trips are:
January World Cup Tour #2 - Otepaa, Estonia + Rybinsk, Russia - $4 000
February Scandinavian Cup B-Tour - Lahtvia + Estonia - $4 000
Covering my domestic expenses will make planning and preparing for the cost of an international trip much more manageable and achievable.
Your contribution means:
I can continue to race with all my focus on getting to the top of the podium. Cross Country skiing is a long term sport, with the majority of racers not hitting the peak of their careers until their late 20's. Getting support while still being a developing athlete will help me to get to that next level and put me solidly on track for the World Cup and Olympic starts I dream about.
Any amount of support I can get is greatly appreciated and I want to thank everyone for believing in me so far. I hope that in sharing my experiences, both the highs and lows, I can inspire new generations of competitors.