Like my teammate, Erik Bjornsen pictured above, I am one of those skiers who must fund a majority of my own World Cup racing expenses at a cost of over $20,000 per year. The National Nordic Foundation is stepping up again to help close this gap. Their support of XC development has helped transform our country into a skiing nation. The NNF has funded many racing and training trips which I have attended over the years, supporting my development from a junior racer to an Olympian. They are a huge contributor to our team and our ski community.
Development doesn’t happen overnight but instead involves year after year of cumulative training and racing experience. This process is a journey that takes time and hard work. Each race weekend and each season is a learning experience which helps me prepare for the next adventure. Every goal that I reach launches me forward to new goals and higher aspirations. Two weeks in Europe for World Juniors used to feel like a long trip and now I’m spending four months racing in Europe and I couldn’t imagine returning home after a couple weeks. Toeing the starting line with powerful European racers used to be incredibly intimidating but now I am close friends with many of these ladies and have realized that they are also chasing similar goals through racing and training. This is also not a solo process. I have had incredible teammates along my side the entire way as well as support from organizations like the NNF. Here are a few pictures highlighting my development from a junior racer to a World Cup skier. The NNF has funded many of these racing trips and I am grateful for their support.
Please support the NNF through the Drive for 25. My fundraising page can be found here. Thank you for the generosity!
|Skiing in Italy with my buddies Sophie and Sadie at World Junior Championships|
|2011 World Championships in Oslo. This was my first senior level Championships and the first time we raced together as a team! Pictured from bottom to top, Liz, me, Kikkan, Holly, Sadie, Jessie, Morgan|
|Training in Bend in 2011|
|Celebrating a 5th place World Cup relay finish in 2012 which was a breakthrough performance as a team.|
|Olympic rookies psyched for Sochi!|