First race of the Ottawa Masters Season. The start of my 10th season on the circuit.
The Opener is traditionally a GS heard at Camp Fortune. One of the oldest established ski hill in Ottawa, if not North America. The Ottawa Ski Club Celebrated it’s 100th anniversary earlier in the Fall.
After the New Year’s Meltdown there was some uncertainty in the air. At least in my mind seeing the shape that Edelweiss was two days prior to the race.
In the age of social media, we found out that the run we normally race might be problematic.
On Sunday Slalom was closed due to lack of snow..and lots of bare spots.. Marshall is open!
In which Andy, the Fastest Ski Patrol in the region replied…
Ya, the groomers did some damn near miraculous grooming Sunday night, so Slalom was back open yesterday. There are gates in Marshall right now. From that I extrapolate that we’ll be racing somewhere!
Some people found a few surprises.
My dowhill suit shrank, damn!
We got the word on Tuesday that the race was ON. The race against the Clock begun.
Racing and leaving work early enough to wax the skis.
My daughter was super nice as she prepared me a sandwich for the road as I didn’t have time to eat supper. Supper was going to have to wait.
Left the house somewhere before 6pm.
4:24 minutes later I was crossing the bridge into Québec and making my way through traffic. It’s been snowing all day.
On the autoroute and off at the Old Chelsea exit before you know it.
Careful not to pass the 50km speed limit by too much on Meech Lake road, even if you’re following a shadowing a Black Suburban with tainted window, because that car will never get pulled over and you definitely will. Found this out this story from a fellow Master racer.
Following cars up the Dunlop road to the Valley Lodge.
It took 24 minutes to get to the snowcovered parking and -8c.
Racing inside, pre-written cheque in wallet and application filled in in order to register for the entire season. Get my lift ticket.
Some familiar faces with a bunch of new faces in the bar, all of us getting ready.
Racing to get suited up, finding our bid number and getting out the door.
The GS course was on Slalom.
I managed two runs prior to the start which included a quick inspection. Snow was good and fast. Not really icy which what I might have expected. Less than half-minute later, it was time to repeat two more times. Masters race results are generally the cumulative of the two fastest runs. One more time to the top to get our stuff at the starting area then off to the bar to match the end of the Canada-Russia World Junior Gold Medal game in Buffalo.
Last year during the Olympics, we matched the same two countries face-off in order to make the Olympic Medal round. We walked into the bar after our race last year and it was 7-3 for Canada, this time it was 3-0 for Canada at the end of the 2nd period. Everything looked under control. The rest is history…
Article from Roy MacGregor in the Globe and Mail. Get a Grip, Canada
Here is a quote from MacGregor:
What happened last night? Well, on the scoresheet sitting before me, Canada takes a 3-0 lead into the third period and somehow loses 5-3. I would say by any imaginable definition that is a “collapse.” It might not be a “national tragedy,” as some have been saying. It might or might not be a “choke,” as all the media was whispering last night but few, if any, dared to say out loud or print. But it as sure as hell a monumental collapse.
Everyone in the bar was stun.
We moved on afterward to better things, the presentations and fabulous door-price provided by Kunstadt Sports, proud sponsor of the Ottawa Masters. T-Shirts were giving to all participants. Thanks Boys!
Another bright side to the evening, I won my first beer bet of the season. I’ll quote the beer buyer in which I share his view about the evening.
had a great time at the season opener at Camp Fortune. the GS set was tight and as technical. The snow was far better than anybody expected. Well done Camp Fortune, Bob Suderman and crew. And yes: my downhill suit survived its structural stress test last night, thanks for asking!
Besides the meltdown, here are the evening’s results.
Next Wednesday race is a GS at Cascades. My favorite hill to race on plus the course is longer.🙂