AST Coach Journal: Jonas Haehlen

Happy New Year!

I hope this update finds everyone safe and healthy.

January 1st is the start of many new goals and resolutions for most; in ski racing, however, January 1st is more of a half way marker. So let’s recap what the team has been up to.

Mid November saw half the group head down to Colorado to kick things off with the opening NorAms of the season. It has been life on the road with race after race ever since. The four weeks leading up to Christmas was mostly spent in Panorama with the exception of a few days in Lake Louise for the Speed NorAms. To start we had a four day Canada Cup series in Panorama which was a solid start for the group. From there we headed into Lake Louise. The Lake Louise Speed races are a tough but enjoyable time of year. With not many days on speed skis it is a steep learning curve getting back into the technique and tactics of speed. On the flip side, Lake Louise is a great venue to make the return to DH happen. Following the Men’s and Women’s World Cup in Lake Louise the track is always in great condition for the NorAm races. The team had some success at these early races which kept the group hungry for more.

Back to Panorama, our second home… and host to the 2022 World Junior Ski Championships! This was the final but biggest stop before Christmas with 11 starts in 11 days. These included the NorAms and the MacLachlan FIS Series races. This block of racing saw some strong performances with Top 20, Top 15 and Top 10 results in the NorAms and podium performances during the FIS series.

The team just wrapped up a much deserved Christmas break spent with family as well as doing some training with their home clubs. Leading into 2022 the group will be split two ways for the month of January with half the group racing in Europe and the other half getting some training and racing in at home. The next set of NorAm races start on February 7th in Mont Edouard, QC. Coming into these races the team will be back together as a group again which should carry through for the remainder of the season.

I wanted to say thank you to everyone who has volunteered at races and events so far this year. Also, a big thank you to all the ROCs, admin and coaches who have jumped through the necessary COVID hoops to make ski racing in Canada possible again this season. A big thanks to our team sponsors as well, GMC for getting us around safely and in style, Sporting Life for helping us with gear and equipment, Karbon for keeping us warm and looking fresh, and Mission Wealth Advisors Raymond James for coming back on board and continuing to support ski racing in Alberta and Canada for many-many years. I hope everyone had a great Christmas Holiday and a fantastic New Year. Stay safe and stay healthy! See you on the slopes soon.