Time Flies.

Paul Kovacs. Elite Cross-Country Skier

No sooner had I landed back in Alaska than it seems I’m boarding a plane and back on the road again. It will be for a long time too, I don’t even have a return ticked booked yet but it’ll be in early April. My time in Anchorage was well spent, training and organising my trip south, spending some time with Lauren. We have both been on the road so much that we haven’t crossed paths all that often this winter. For that matter our whole household seems to be constantly on the move going off to races for weeks on end. Living with us is another Aussie, Casey Wright who skis for the University of Alaska and one of her teammates, a German named Luca Winkler.

So in Alaska we still haven’t got much snow, they managed to add another 500m of trail to our man-made loops but basically…

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Winter Youth Olympic Games Report

After a very exciting and action filled two weeks in Norway here is the report!

YOG Athletes: Lilly Boland and Liam Burton

After departing Campra on the 7th of February to Zurich, we travelled to Oslo Airport in style via the Swissair Business Lounge, this was a total surprise to us and gave us good vibes heading into WYOG. After arriving in Oslo we were quickly separated from our skis, which were sent directly to the stadium and put on busses to Lillehammer. The delicacies available on the bus included lefsenbrod – a sweet pastry like bread with cinnamon/sugar/cream filling. Our arrival to the village introduced us to organised chaos as we were put through security, given accreditation, shown our rooms and then went on the search for food. Continue reading

Car Concerts, Cash $$, and Salty Solutions

Jessica Yeaton will be on the World Cup circuit with the Australian Team in Canada next week – here’s her first blog of 2016.

Jessica Yeaton

In honor of all the exciting things that have been happening lately, I am jumping back on the blog train. Or maybe just so I can have another avenue to express how AWESOME it is that DAVID WON THE BIRKIE!!!! No actually, I have been up to some pretty cool things too 🙂

IMG_0234 What a cutie!

But first, let me just say how great it is so see someone you have watched work so hard to achieve their goals- and then to have it actually happen. David pulled some pretty sweet moves the other day and I am totally inspired. I don’t think I have ever been so psyched to see someone win, even if I did accidentally hit snooze and miss the whole thing (the replay was pretty cool, too- you can watch it here: https://vimeo.com/156182805 (22:03, the sleeve pull up)

IMG_0210 Luckily this did not happen to David


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Australian Team for 2016 World Junior/U23 Championships

The 2016 World Junior / U23 Championship will take place in Rasnov, Romania, on February 22-28. Australia will be represented by a team of four athletes; Katerina Paul, Stella Ajani, Ella Jackson and Jackson Bursill, supported by coaches Ewan Watson and Robert Jones.  The team is currently undertaking the final preparations in Seefeld, Austria, before flying to Romania on Thursday.

AUSXC Junior-U23 Worlds Team 2016 #2

AUSXC World Junior / U23 Championship Team 2016: L-R Ewan Watson, Stella Ajani, Jackson Bursill, Katerina Paul, Ella Jackson, Robert Jones.

Continue reading

Craftsbury races and the joys of travel.

Paul Kovacs. Elite Cross-Country Skier

“This is your captain speaking. There is a Korean Airlines plane blocking the runway and it doesn’t seem to be talking to anyone, we are just going to have to wait till it moves.”

Pretty much the story of my travelling life when it comes to flying to and from the East coast, and especially Vermont.

So before we get to our Korean road block, I had another week of racing out East. To make things interesting for us, all Mother Nature decided to spice things up with some rain. For about 36 hours we had pretty consistent rain. I had moved up to Stowe where we were supposed to race but everything was washed away. Luckily another 40 min north there was a 2.4 kilometre man made loop at Craftsbury Outdoor Centre. They had a decent amount of snow and some extra piled up, which they pushed out and made into a…

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OPA Cup Campra – Individual Freestyle

Day 2 of the OPA Cup races at the Centro di Nordico Campra was a chilly affair, with the new snow from the day before mixing in and freezing up the man-made snow. This led to some very fast skiing from all the competitors.

The junior girls were first off over 7.5km (3×2.5km), with Alecia starting, followed by Ella, Stella, Lilly and then Kat. Kat led at the finish with 38th place +2:37 back with 160 FIS points. Lilly stepped up from last weekend finishing in 42nd as the 14th U18 girl +3:10.8 back with a personal best 185 FIS points leading in to the WYOG events starting next week. Stella bounced back strongly from a week long illness to come 47th 4:01 back from superstar junior Katharina Hennig of Germany. Ella was next through in 50th 5:05 behind and Alecia then coming in 52nd to finish round 1 of the distance races for the Aussie girls.

The boys were next off, with Hugh Pollard starting bib 83 flying off around the 10km course in 28:11.8 minutes, finishing 6:12.7 back from Martin Collet of France (who went through 7.5km only 15sec behind senior men’s victor Roman Furger of Switzerland). Liam Burton with bib 92 rampaged around the loop, chasing down many of the internationals ahead of him and skiing with many of the higher ranked skiers to finish 47th only 2:25.4min behind Collet and picking up a handy PB of 137 FIS points to add to his resume and showing some good form prior to the Winter Youth Olympic Games starting 12th February.

Chris Cook

The Australian Team competing tomorrow will be greatly reduced with Kat, Lilly and Liam resting, leaving Ella, Stella and Hugh to tackle the 10/15km Classic Pursuit event in the forecast dump of snow (10-15cm expected during the race).

Seeking Perisher Nordic Shelter Manager

NSW XCountry logo

The NSW Cross Country Committee is seeking expressions of interest for the role of Perisher Nordic Shelter Manager/s for the 2016 Australian winter.

Managing the Nordic Shelter at the Perisher XC Centre is one of the more interesting ways to fill a winter. The position won’t make you wealthy (it is a volunteer position), but, as the Nordic Shelter Manager, you will have a winter like no other. The managers’ role, on many occasions requires 2 people to complete all tasks, particularly in adverse weather conditions.

Accommodation is provided at the Nordic Shelter for two people and the manager/s are required to be in residence from the June long weekend through the October long weekend.

Further details are provides in this linked PDF: Nordic Shelter EOI 2016


Expressions of interest in the position are requested by 18 March 2016. Please include your contact details, a short (half page at most) essay about your suitability for the role (and other comments that you may wish to make) and a dot-point list of your relevant experience and skills. For further information or to submit an EOI contact: nswxc@nswsnowsports.com.au

Wieder Dahoam – und ein großes Dankeschön

Half an Adventure

*English Translation Below*

Danke an…


Dieser Post ist das erste auf Deutsch in diesem Blog, aber zum Ende meines Aufenthalts in Deutschland muss ich etwas für die Leute in Deutschland schreiben. Mehr als 14 Monate nach meiner Ankunft in Deutschland bin ich wieder in Australien, um ein neues Studium zu beginnen, und ein Kapitel in meinem Leben ist jetzt fertig. In dieser Zeit habe ich sehr viel gelernt, viel hartes Training absolviert, und viele nette und hilfreiche Menschen kennengelernt.

Das erste Dankeschön geht an meinen Mitbewohner, Martin. Er hat mir an vielen Stellen geholfen, zum Beispiel beim Einzug in die Wohnung ganz am Anfang, oder wenn ich ein Auto suchte, und musste zu jedem Händler gefahren werden. Wir haben oft zusammen gekocht und gegessen, sind mehrmals zusammen geradelt, und haben sogar Langlauf gemacht (er macht es ganz gut!).

Danke an meine Vermieterin Andrea: für die regelmäßigen Brotlieferungen aus dem Holzofen, für die…

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OPA Cup Classic Sprint – Campra

The Australian team travelled from Seefeld to Campra on Wednesday to begin the next stage of the WYOG/WJC Trip. Campra is suffering from a less than favourable winter, causing a few changes in the tracks from what many Aussies will be familiar with who have raced there before. Never the less, it provided some exciting challenges and set us up for a great race weekend!

Both men and women faced a 1.4km sprint course with 5 short, steep herringbone hills. Many of the senior (and junior) men elected to double pole on skate skis (and have the option to bail out into herringbone if needed) whilst all our skiers stuck with classic skis and gripwax. In total seven skiers were disqualified for skating, whilst this pales in comparison to the 15 teams in the Norwegian Championships that were disqualified, it still shows just how far the boundaries are being pushed in the sport.

To racing. The Aussies were lead off by Kat Paul, who powered through qualification to finish 23rd and make the finals. Stella Ajani was next in 36th with a ripper of a ski, followed by Ella Jackson, Lilly Boland and Alecia Phillips who were mostly taking part in their first international sprint event.

Hugh Pollard was the strongest of the boys finishing 60th, 42.12sec behind Janez Lampic of Slovenia. Liam Burton was close behind in 63rd, 46.49sec behind. It should be noted that Janez was only 3 seconds behind the fastest open male qualifier Giadanomenico Salvadori of Italy.

Chris Cook was the sole representative in the Open Men finishing 51st, 39.46sec behind Salvadori.

Battery running low, so that is all for now. 7.5/10km Freestyle Individual Start Saturday, followed by 10/15km Classic Pursuit on Sunday.




East Coast Racing.

Paul Kovacs. Elite Cross-Country Skier

Global warming is one serious pain in the butt! We are in-between Supertour weekends here on the East Coast. I’m inside drying out after doing intervals in heavy rain. The paddocks and fields are green and brown dotted with the odd patch of white. The snowstorm that battered parts of the east coast never came north to Vermont or the upper half of New York State where things are desperate.

IMG_8323 No snow in sight driving into Middlebury

So far this year I’ve only raced on two courses that have been natural snow, all the other courses have man made. Strips of white through green and brown forests.
On the 26th I flew down to Vermont from Alaska and hired a rental car. After 13 hours of travel I wasn’t super psyched to drive but I managed to find my way to New York State and a good friend’s house. An…

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