Season Wrap-Up: Abishai Corey
My season wrapped up with three major race series. U18 Nationals at Cannon Mountain, Nor-Am Finals at Whistler Mountain (British Columbia), and E-Cup Finals at Sugarloaf Mountain.
The U18 Nationals Downhill at Cannon was definitely the scariest downhill I have ever raced in. Mentally, this race was challenging for me because I wanted to send it, but I didn’t necessarily want to send it into the net going 65 miles an hour... The other disciplines were very difficult. I started in the back of the pack with harsh conditions and wasn’t able to score any points. Even though I didn’t get the results I wanted, I was thankful to be close to home and still have the opportunity to connect with girls from all over the country.
Nor-Am Finals was an unexpected, yet spectacular trip to Whistler Mountain in British Columbia. The mountain was immense and might be my favorite one yet. This race held speed events only; meaning we just raced Super G and Downhill. Fun fact, the course we raced on was an Olympic Downhill track. I was able to race against members of the US Ski Team. The way that they inspected the courses, warmed up before runs, and took every little knoll into play was inspiring.
I skied well and aggressively and enjoyed the thrill of speed on the terrifying course. One of the bonuses of skiing against US Ski Team members was that my good friend, Sam Morse, was out there competing as well. On my last day, I made an error during inspection and it caused me to miss a gate going over a blind knoll which disqualified me from the race. I was annoyed, embarrassed, and frustrated that I made such a big mistake at such a high-level race. Sam was able to encourage me and remind me that it’s ok to have bad days; but to learn from them.
Sugarloaf E-Cup finals were exactly how I needed to end my season. The speed races were canceled due to weather, however, I was able to score well in the two Giant Slalom races and two Slalom races we had. I dropped my points in both races leading me to reach some of my seasonal goals. Even though we had poor weather, we had some time to hang out as a team. On one of our days off, we even got to go bowling.
Being on a travel team is like having a second family; you spend more time with them than you do with your own families between school, skiing, and traveling. It’s an amazing culture, and many racers would have quit a long time ago without the community element. We make sure to support each other on and off the mountain.
Many say a season is over when you cross the finish line of your final race. This, however, is not true for me. The off-season is where I prepare for the next season. As my dad says, “Races in February are won now.” I know next season will come up quicker than I imagine, and all I can do is prepare for it.
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Congratulations on a great season Abishai! Good luck with your training!