My first season back as an athlete has come and gone. It was a crazy roller coaster of ups and downs. Not making the vital points in Norway and Finland, then having our last competition cancelled looked to be the end of it, but we moved our last chance trip over to Japan. The first competition in Japan was bliss, finally after years and years of competing. I put two jumps together to show a good result (11th), which was the best of my career. These points put in into the lead for the final spot on the Olympic team. The next day Dusty Korek brought his best to the table and ended up 4th place. Bumping me out of the spot, which is still a shock to him and everyone else. That night I sat back with a couple of necessary beverages, thinking my season was over and reflected on what I done and what I could do more. The final Olympic Quota List from FIS was released a couple days after we got back. Because I had scored many points in 11th place we had allocated another quota spot for Canada. Then another rule set into place by FIS basically states they want 12 four man teams to compete, and since there was only 11 we ended up qualifying 4 guys!
The Olympics are always amazing. Just the shear amount of money being spent and being made is awesome. The ski jumping complex is 7 times more expensive then any other in the world. For reasons stated as "trouble with the bedrock foundation" haha... All of the politics aside, all the venues were built as well as they could have been. The main issue I had was the schedule with the jumping times. Prime time Europe is after dinner 8pm, and we had 2 hour time difference, this had us starting to jump at 10pm which was something i've never done before. My jumping wasnt effected by the harsh schedule, but I think my Olympic experience was. We would get back to our village and everything closed at 10. The arcade, library, gymnasium, the food tent was half closed, and most of all the lounges. Not getting to mingle with the other athletes, simply because everyone else was asleep. Then have to go to bed at 3am and try to sleep as long as we could. Everyone already thinks ski jumpers are lazy and here we were sleeping until noon everyday....
The season finished with Canadian nationals in whistler, we all were burnt out and really didn't even want to go, Dusty did not even come. When you get to the jumps in whistler something comes over you and everything is OK. We had 3 days of open training, and I was jumping great and was getting excited for the competition. Two days before the 90m comp we were in the gym playing volleyball. I went up to block a shot and came down on a teammates foot, twisting my left ankle so badly the bone hit the wood floor. I knew instantly it was bad and all I could think of was "I didn't come all the way out here to watch the comp!" that night I had a few necessary beverages... and went to bed hoping I'd wake up to a fixed ankle. That didn't happen, It was worse it had stiffened up overnight and was really painful to walk on. I didnt want to call it quits completely but I had to drop out of the 90m competition the next day. I ended up volunteering as manual distance judge, where I mark the jumpers with my eyes just in case the video marking system fails.
The large hill comp was the last day we were in whistler. I woke up in pain as usual and made the decision to risk it and jump with my bum ankle. I went straight to the cold tub, and grabbed an icepack for the trip up to the jumps. When I got there I got my ankle taped up in a 90 Degree position, which if you know anything about ski jumping this is not good. Making my inrun, flight, and landing positions pretty tricky. I skipped the trial jump and took my first jump in competition. As I left the start bar I knew I was going to be OK, just the jump was not going to be great. When I went to jump I tried to balance out my weaker leg with my jump and it surprisingly worked out pretty well. I flew 105 meters which was good enough for 3rd place. After about 1 hour of debates and protests we ending up cancelling the second round due to snow. To my advantage I only had to take one jump with my ankle.
To sum up the winter I would say it was awesome, to get paid to travel to world is something most people dream about and something I take for granted a lot of the time. I got to represent Canada and all of my sponsors: Scotia Mcleod The Melhoff Group, Kayden Industries, and Elan Skis.
Thanks to everyone who supported me though the thick and thin (literally) and I hope to really show what I can do next year!