Total 3 - 6311735162
Wild Rumpus Sports
 

Tour De Ski Start Rights (updated)

Updated status of Tour de ski Roster

Athlete, 
Erik Bjornsen, discretion accepted

Paddy Caldwell, discretion accepted

Simi Hamilton,  discretion, accepted

Andy Newell, Shaftsbury. discretion, accepted

Scott Patterson, discretion declined

Noah Hoffman, rejected

WOMEN
Sadie Bjornsen, objective, accepted

Rosie Brennan, objective, accepted

Sophie Caldwell, objective, accepted

Jessie Diggins, objective, accepted

Kikkan Randall, objective, accepted

Ida Sargent, objective, accepted

Liz Stephen, discretion, accepted

Chelsea Holmes, Rejected

Tour de Ski Start Rights

Tour De Ski start rights are given to US skiers that are ranked in the World Cup top 30 in either sprint or distance at the end of period one, or via coaches discretion.  These discretionary start rights have become a controversial topic because the Olympic Team is named at the close of the Tour.  US athletes that are ranked in the World Cup top 50 in either Distance or Sprint after the final day of the tour earn an Olympic start over skiers qualifying via SuperTour and US Nationals.  The controversy stems from reduced athlete fields due to high drop-out rates in the Tour that left only 32 women competing in the final stage last year.  Thirty skiers score points in each World Cup event and last year the US Ski Team qualified three of their athletes for the World Championships on the final day of the tour.  The other point of contention is that the objective marker for earning a Tour de Ski start is a top 30 after period one in distance or on the overall ranking list.  This is a much tougher standard than the top 50 needed to make the Olympics at the end of period two.  Less than half of the US skiers (and no men) that started world cups in period one earned Tour starts objectively.  The remainder of the athletes will only start via discretion which gives the coaching staff a lot of control over who qualifies for the Olympic Team.

These athletes qualified objectively

Women: Kikkan Randall, Sadie Bjornsen, Jessie Diggins, Rosie Brennan, Sophie Caldwell, Ida Sargent

 

These athletes did not qualify objectively

Women: Liz Stephens, Chelsea Holmes, (Julia Kern, limited starts, did not compile data)

Men: Noah Hoffman, Erik Bjornsen, Andrew Newell, Patrick Caldwell, Scott Patterson, Simi Hamilton

 

In mid-November head coach Chris Grover wrote the email below, explaining how discretionary starts would be given to athletes for the Tour de Ski.  Since this email was not private correspondence and nearly every athlete in contention for making the Olympic Team received it, I think it is appropriate to share.  Whether or not you agree with the broad and indistinct language used to “clarify” the discretionary process, I think it is important for the ski community to be aware of how decisions that have direct repercussions on Olympic Team naming are made.  Following Grover’s email, I listed this season’s stats for each athlete that did not make the top 30 rankings.

“Dear Athletes,

We’ve recently received some feedback from members of the community that are concerned about how the USST staff might apply World Cup selection criteria specifically to this year’s Tour de Ski.  There are those who feel that a Tour de Ski start provides a potentially easier path for Olympic Team qualification than racing at U.S. Nationals.  Because this is an Olympic year, people are understandably concerned that every athlete has ample opportunity to qualify for the Games, no matter if they are racing internationally or domestically.  As USST staff, we too want to see the fairest application of the selection criteria while simultaneously selecting the best possible USA squad to PyeongChang.

To help clarify the upcoming Tour de Ski Team selection, we’ve strengthened the discretionary selection guidelines in the attached Selection Criteria.

We are not modifying our USA Team for Period 1 of World Cup.  Some of those athletes are already in Europe and preparing to race.

The only change comes in the language used to describe how discretionary picks are made, where we’ve added further detail:

  • Athletes who have not met the General Criteria may be selected to the team via discretion if they satisfy any of the following:

o    Outstanding competition results from the 2016/2017 or 2017/2018 seasons, including as a member of a team event, indicating a potential for Olympic success.

o    Recent positive direction or trend of competition results indicating a potential for Olympic or World Championship success.

o    Indication of medal potential in future Olympic or World Championship competition (such as international age group results and age rankings) that would be materially enhanced by selection to the team.

The General Criteria is a ranking of top-30 in the Distance or Sprint World Cup.

Our hope is to be more transparent and to provide the USA skiing community with a better understanding of how and why selection decisions are made.  The updated criteria have now been posted here: https://usskiandsnowboard.org/sport-programs/criteria/us-cross-country-team-criteria  In addition, throughout this winter we’ll be naming World Cup starters publicly for each period of racing (including those who have made the General Criteria, COC leaders, and those athletes who we have been invited to start via discretion) and describing the rationale behind those discretionary picks.

Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns, and please help me by circulating this to your colleagues that may be attempting to secure World Cup or OWG team nominations.  I don’t have e-mails for everyone.

Best of luck to everyone this winter!  Thanks, Chris”

 

Period One Race Data

 

Liz Stephens

Age 30

WC Distance Rank = N/A

Average FIS point (six races) = 74.57

Best Finish = 36

Total World Cup points = 0

Points from Objective criteria = 21

17-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 10 km C Pursuit 48 (51) 123.68
16-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 10 km F 47 70.94
10-12-2017 Davos SUI World Cup 10 km F 40 62.02
03-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR World Cup Skiathlon 7.5/7.5km C/F 36 113.17
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 10 km F Pursuit 56 (47) 92.23
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Overall Standings 56

 

Chelsea Holmes

Age 30

WC Distance Rank = 55

Average FIS point distance(six races) = 83.83

Best Finish = 29

Total World Cup points = 2

Points from objective criteria = 19

17-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 10 km C Pursuit 39 (40) 92.44
16-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 10 km F 36 57.64
10-12-2017 Davos SUI World Cup 10 km F 29 48.62
03-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR World Cup Skiathlon 7.5/7.5km C/F 38 120.82
02-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR Sprint Qualification WC SP C Qual 64 147.24
02-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR World Cup SP C Final 64
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Overall Standings 60
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 10 km F Pursuit 60 (48) 93.24
25-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 10 km C 64 90.21

 

Simi Hamilton

Age 30

WC sprint rank = 23

Overall rank = 46

Average FIS point sprint (two races) = 60.23

Best finish 9

total world cup points 29

points from top 30 overall and objective = 15

10-12-2017 Davos

SUI 

World Cup 15 km F DNS
09-12-2017 Davos

SUI 

Sprint Qualification WC SP F Qual 12 33.04
09-12-2017 Davos

SUI 

World Cup SP F Final 9
25-11-2017 Ruka

FIN 

Stage World Cup 15 km C 96 88.53
24-11-2017 Ruka

FIN 

Sprint Qualification WC SP C Qual 60 87.41
24-11-2017 Ruka

FIN 

Stage World Cup SP C Final 60

Noah Hoffman

Age 28

WC Distance rank = 60

Average FIS point distance = (six races) 54.87

Best Finish = 28

Total World Cup Points = 3

Points from Objective Criteria = 34

17-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 15 km C Pursuit 49 (55) 86.01
16-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 15 km F 40 37.58
10-12-2017 Davos SUI World Cup 15 km F 48 49.31
03-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR World Cup Skiathlon 15/15km C/F 28 66.18
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Overall Standings 39
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 15 km F Pursuit 39 (35) 43.27
25-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 15 km C 43 46.92

 

Patrick Caldwell

Age 23

WC Distance rank =46

Average FIS point distance (six races)= 66.44

Best Finish = 19 stage, 41 WC

Total World Cup points = 12

Point from Objective criteria = 25

17-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 15 km C Pursuit 44 (39) 68.01
16-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 15 km F 53 48.92
10-12-2017 Davos SUI World Cup 15 km F 41 43.30
09-12-2017 Davos SUI Sprint Qualification WC SP F Qual 108 201.59
09-12-2017 Davos SUI World Cup SP F Final 108
03-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR World Cup Skiathlon 15/15km C/F 56 140.70
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Overall Standings 51
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 15 km F Pursuit 51 (19) 28.98
25-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 15 km C 72 68.75

 

Scott Patterson

Age 25

WC Distance Rank N/A

Average FIS point (six races) = 66.28

Best Finish = 31st (stage), 36 WC

Total World Cup points = 0

Points from Objective Qualification = 37

17-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 15 km C Pursuit 39 (40) 68.07
16-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 15 km F 42 39.76
10-12-2017 Davos SUI World Cup 15 km F 88 88.87
03-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR World Cup Skiathlon 15/15km C/F 36 89.98
02-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR Sprint Qualification WC SP C Qual 74 160.72
02-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR World Cup SP C Final 74
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Overall Standings 55
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 15 km F Pursuit 55 (31) 32.66
25-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 15 km C 86 78.34

 

Erik Bjornsen

Age 26

WC Distance rank = 39

WC Sprint rank = 42

Overall rank =42

Average FIS Points Distance (five races) = 42.27

Average FIS Points Sprint = 78.05

Best Distance Finish = 20

Best Sprint finish = 24 Overall, 26 Qualifying

Distance World Cup Points = 18

Points from Objective Criteria = 11

Sprint World Cup Points = 7

Points from objective top 30 overall = 11

17-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 15 km C Pursuit 26 (22) 47.15
16-12-2017 Toblach ITA World Cup 15 km F 29 30.95
09-12-2017 Davos SUI World Cup SP F Final 58
09-12-2017 Davos SUI Sprint Qualification WC SP F Qual 58 93.25
03-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR World Cup Skiathlon 15/15km C/F 20 54.67
02-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR Sprint Qualification WC SP C Qual 35 78.15
02-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR World Cup SP C Final 35
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Overall Standings 26
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 15 km F Pursuit 26 (43) 48.78
25-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 15 km C 26 29.80
24-11-2017 Ruka FIN Sprint Qualification WC SP C Qual 26 62.76

 

Andrew Newell

WC Sprint Rank = 40

Age 34

Sprint FIS Points = 58.9

Best Finish = 21 Overall, 10th Qualification

Total Points = 10

Overall rank = 64

Points from top 30 overall and objective criteria = 34

09-12-2017 Davos SUI Sprint Qualification WC SP F Qual 10 29.35
09-12-2017 Davos SUI World Cup SP F Final 21
02-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR Sprint Qualification WC SP C Qual 38 79.76
02-12-2017 Lillehammer NOR World Cup SP C Final 38
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Overall Standings 75
26-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 15 km F Pursuit 75 (79) 139.40
25-11-2017 Ruka FIN Stage World Cup 15 km C 59 59.28
24-11-2017 Ruka FIN Sprint Qualification WC SP C Qual 34 67.59

 

 

Thirty-Seven

<img I turned 37 this month. On my birthday, my coach told me that since passing my prime years I had done a decent job of maintaining my fitness. Then he told me that I had entered a new phase where I would no longer be able to maintain my physical conditioning and that I would literally wake up every morning just a little bit worse off than I was the day before. The positive news was that I had a huge fitness base to watch erode away and that I can remain at an elite level for a few more years. If that sounds incredibly mean and insensitive you should never work with my coach. I like the (tongue in cheek) straight story and that it why I have worked with him for most of my career. One of the surest signs of age has been the decrease in…

Great Interviews

Noah Hoffman recently interviewed the CEO of USSA, Tiger Shaw, and the Vice President of Athletics, Luke Bodensteiner. Noah asked revealing questions that both Tiger and Luke answered with surprising openness. I have many disagreements with USSA strategies but I always have respect for direct communication. In my opinion Luke and Tiger were extremely forthright in these interviews which is a welcome change from the opaque answers that their subordinates often use to camouflage controversial policies. Both interviews are about 50 minutes long but nearly all of the questions are pointed and the answers are informative. For better or for worse, listening to these interviews gave me a clearer understanding of where XC skiing fits into USSA’s priorities. I highly recommend listening. Luke Interview Tiger Interview

Tough or Stupid

At its most basic, training is stressing the body in a specific way to make the body adapt and become stronger. Stressing the body is often not a pleasant experience. Maximal interval sessions are painful by nature, over distance workouts are intended to deplete the body beyond what is normal, and weather and outside forces always have the potential to make workouts more difficult. I have been training between 700-1000 hours annually for the last 18 years. The consistency of my training relies on my willingness to get the work done despite fatigue, minor injury, and inhospitable weather. Pushing through minor obstacles is proof of dedication and toughness. However there is a line between tough and stupid that I have always had a tendency to cross. This line could also be described as a barrier of diminishing or even negative returns. Even when my body or the climate has been…

Stelvio II

Training has continued to go very well on the Stelvio glacier. The MWSC, Noah, and I are staying at the Livrio Hotel at the foot of the glacier which allows us to ski out the door each day. Though isolated it is easy to take the tram down to our van and drive down to lower altitudes and civilization. Here are some pictures of me running through Bormio. href=”http://blogs.fasterskier.com/krisfreeman/files/2013/09/Run.jpg”> The food is better than one would expect at 10,000 feet but only three meals a day is a little light for xc skiers putting in up to five hours of training a day. Will Sweetser has been making frequent trips to the grocery store so that we can have five meals. I’m pretty sure that Noah has been eating about half of the food that Will buys for the six athletes he is supporting. I witnessed him eating an entire…

Stelvio

I am currently training on a glacier in Stelvio Italy. The training loop is about 5k long with the high point at an elevation of 10,900 feet. The air is thin up here but the skiing has been good so far. I was on multigrade hardwax for both of my classic sessions and my skate skis were gliding fast on the Fischer P1-1 grind. The visibility has been hit or miss but the sky is supposed to clear soon. I have never trained this high for an extended period and I was curious about how the high altitude would affect my insulin sensitivity. My altitude experience has been limited to traveling from sea level to as high as 7000 feet. When I have transitioned to these altitudes in the past I have always had to up my insulin doses by at least 20%. I speculate that my body treats the…

Ride Aroostook

This Weekend I drove back up to Presque Isle Maine to take part in the Ride Aroostook bike tour which benefits the children’s diabetes program “Camp Adventure.” I have worked with this camp on two occasions, going for a downriver canoe and participating in a run and shoot biathlon relay race. I was impressed with the organization and ambition of the camp. Ride Aroostook is a two day bike tour that is advertised as being 150 miles total (by my measurement it was 62 miles the first day and 70 the second). I decided that it would be fitting for me as an Olympic skier and type 1 diabetic to roller-ski the event in order to drum up more donations and draw more attention to Camp Adventure. I skated the first day and really enjoyed the well marked course that hugged river beds and meandered through rolling potato fields. The…

Top Notch Triathlon

I raced the Top Notch Triathlon in Franconia NH this morning. The unique race starts with a six mile uphill Mt Bike. This is followed with a half mile swim across Echo lake to the base of Cannon Mt. The last leg is a run/scramble up the alpine trails to the summit. I set the course record for this race with a 1:06:05 in 2006. That year the course was dry as a bone and the Mt bike was ripping fast. This summer has seen more rainfall than I can ever remember in New England. For good measure there was a long thunder shower last night that completely saturated the trail. Setting a new record in the muddy conditions was going to be a tall order. Fortunately another very talented competitor, Ryan Kelly, raced today and we pushed each other hard. Ryan is a more practiced and technically better rider…

Busy July

In late June I wrapped up my first training camp in Maine with a 5k running race. I broke 16:00 for the first time since the year 2004 with a 15:53. Not blazing fast but still a good indication that things are going well. Since then my summer has gotten very busy. Over the past eight years I have been visiting summer camps for kids with diabetes all around the country. I share the story of my diagnosis and career with them in the hopes that they will not let the disease deter them from their dreams and goals in life. I find the advocacy work very rewarding so I planned to visit 10 camps over course of five weeks. I planned the disruption into my training in the Spring so I have only scheduled 75 training hours for July. I am not allowed to post pictures of the campers…

Great Camp in Maine

My first camp of the year in Maine is nearly over. It has been very well supported and I have gotten some good quality sessions in. I did some L3 kayak intervals with Will Sweetser on the Aroostook river. I also did a 100 mile road bike zig zagging my way from Presque Isle to Fort Kent. It was really nice to have a support van for the entire ride. This morning I went for a two hour double pole with Welly, Sam Tarling, and two junior team members. I will take advantage of the pool at the University of Maine Presque Isle and put in some laps for today’s second session.