The end of August has been, as traditionally, a sign of participation in Alliansloppet, the biggest race on rollerskis. This year we were a bit more successful then last year and our team was visible in Trollhättan, Sweden.
This year, we headed to Trollhättan by car, but in the end 14h on the road were pretty cool. Alexis arrived from Geneva by plane maybe one hour later, but Ilya had some troubles with delayed flights from Zurich and he spent almost the same time as we in car and arrived to the hotel after midnight :-(.
Friday was dedicated to training on the racetrack, afternoon some last preparations for the race and Lukas had a number of other meetings... So Friday was quickly over. Racing Saturday! The start was scheduled for the afternoon 14:20 (girls) and 14:35 (boys), so in the morning a slightly pre-race training, when somebody was choosing the rollerskis and soubody went running, Lukas had the pre-race meeting of the teams, then lunch, the team meeting with infos about departure , feeding stations, posts with reserve poles (these are breaking every year as for a life :-() and we have already started to race.
The girl´s start went without bigger problems, but after men´s start unfortunately Ilya fell down immediately after the start, due to a competitor in front of him mistake, but he was soon back in front. The first round was quite nervous when a large group of athletes was together, but our competitors have been avoiding bigger problems. Katerina was in women´s leading group without big problem and in men´s leading goup were especially Ilya, Alexis and Honza also close to the front. In the first half of the second round, unfortunately, Lukas and Adam dropped out of the group, and even though they tried, they did not return to the leading group, what is similar to cycling. For some time, everyone raced alone, but then went off with several other racers, including John Kristian Dahl, an excellent long distance skier, and could alternate for a few moments. But the main thing was going ahead, the leading group was still big enough, but in the middle of the last round our guys were in front.
Sometimes there were some complications, unfortunately Jan also became very unpleasant and about 2-2.5km before the finish he had collision with the organizer and he crashed down to asphalt, which put him away from a possible fight for a great result :-( The patch for us was excellent result of Katerina Smutna, who finished in sprint fight for a great 3rd place, Ilya´s excellent 7th, Alexis 15th place. Jan finished the race in 29th place, Lukas 53rd and Adam 60. The equilibrium of finish is also indicated by the fact that the first 16 competitors were into an incredible 3 " to the winner ..
Even though we had a bit of bad luck and we would like to see Jan in fight in the front group to the finish and Lukas and Adam in better places, we judge the race as very successful!
Sunday was home travel and we are back in the process right now...