2014 Winter Olympics Sochi, Russia
The USA Women’s team is the strongest it has ever been. I knew making the Olympic Team would be more challenging than ever but still I decided to go for it. I made a strong case for myself winning both of the sprint and distance opening Super Tours. I focused on distance skate races with climbs at altitude. I won the first 10 km by 1 minute 20 seconds and the 20 km National Championships by 3 minutes and 36 seconds. These were huge margins but sadly without the opportunity to compete head to head against the World Cup Women’s team left me on the wrong side of the team selection. My training was set for me to peak on February 22, the day of the Olympic 30 km. Fortunately that was also the date of the largest race in North America, the American Birkebeiner 50 km. Winning the race for the third time I solidified my Super Tour lead and qualified for all the post Olympic World Cups, including World Cup Finals. I scored World Cup points by finishing 24th in the 10 km Freestyle in Falun, Sweeden. My focus became the 2015 World Championships in Falun, Sweeden and I hit my target race perfectly winning a historic World Championship Bronze medal for Team USA.
The 2014 season marked my best year yet. Realizing my goal of becoming an Olympian along with many personal bests. I represented my country as part of TEAM USA in all of the long distance events at the Olympics. I competed in the 30km Skiathalon, 15km Classic and 50km Freestyle. My focus of the 2014 Olympics in Russia is the 50km Freestlye. I finished as the third American in 46th in both the 30km and 15km races. I finished 51st in the 50km freestyle and the second American. Of the 14 athletes representing the USA in the cross country events I am the only athlete to have never been a member of the National Team or a recipient of National Team Support. I am so grateful to have the wonderful support of my community and sponsors to be able to achieve this accomplishment as a bit of an outsider. I was fortunate enough to have my parents, brother and sisters in Sochi to cheer in my events. One of the highlights of the games came on the first lap of the 15km Classical race climbing the largest hill on the course. As I pushed up the climb I could hear my family cheering. The same voices that have supported me from my very first race and all along the way. I didn’t know if they were going to be able to make the race since they arrived early that same day to Russia. I had one of the best classic races of my life and I know that those cheers and support were a big part in that. My wife Caitlin was unable to make the big trip to Sochi. I talked to her everyday though and executed the training and peaking plan she wrote for me each day.