Hello from the other side…of the pond.

Erika gives us an awesome poem and a great update on OPA finals!

 

Hello! It’s me.

I was wondering if you would like to hear about Italy.

We traveled here, from Germany.

Ready to race in OPA Cups, ski fast and eat way too much cheese.

 

Hello? Can you hear me?

I’m in Dobbiaco sun-tanning and taking powder skis.

Leaving the east coast, warm and rainy

I’d forgotten how true winter feels with fresh snow under-feet.

 

There’s such a difference between here and there

And a million miles

 

Hello endless pasta bowls

Italia is food for the soul

And we can’t wait to race, OPA finals at last

Getting ready to take on the fast of the fast

 

While the majority of SMS T2 has been busy kicking butt and taking names in the Tour de Canada, Ben and I are representing the U.S. of A at OPA Cup Finals on the other side of the pond in Toblach, Italy. The OPA Cup tour includes athletes from at least 9 countries including Spain, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Lichtenstein, Slovenia, Switzerland and the United States.

Leah, Julia and I jumping into our first OPA Cup races in Arber Germany
Leah, Julia and I jumping into our first OPA Cup races in Arber Germany
Pretty lucky!
Pretty lucky!

We kicked off OPA Cup racing in Arber, Germany last week with a classic 10/15km and mass start skate 15/30km race. OPA Cups are basically the central European version of SuperTours…except faster. The skiers competing on the OPA Cup are the best development athletes from each nation. Similar to the U.S. SuperTour circuit, OPA Cup athletes fight for precious points and World Cups start rights. I was psyched to finish 17th in the classic 10km, a race marked by warm temps and speedy skis while Ben led the U.S. men finishing in 25th place. I think we were both left wanting more from the mass start skate race, finishing in 21st and 45th respectively.

That view though!
That view though!
Sunset runs in the German countryside
Sunset runs in the German countryside

From Arber we traveled to Toblach, Italy for OPA Cup Finals also known as a Nordic skier’s ‘paradise.’ I absolutely LOVE racing in Europe and especially Toblach, an Italian mountain town nestled at the base of the Dolomites and rich in wine and pasta. We kick off a 3-day mini-tour tomorrow starting with a skate prologue followed by a classic individual start race and finally, a skate pursuit! Check back in for results!

Some sheep we found in downtown Toblach
Some sheep we found in downtown Toblach
Some of the US crew
Some of the US crew
The stadium! We will be channeling some Jessie speed this weekend as we take on the same course she WON a World Cup on earlier this year!!
The stadium! We will be channeling some Jessie speed this weekend as we take on the same course she WON a World Cup on earlier this year!!
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