Luck turned out to be on my side (for once :-P) since the season in New Zealand got extended and the season in Austria started with exceptional good snow conditions for mid-October! With only 12 off-snow days it has been the shortest “in between seasons” for me so far.. a record that needs to be broken within the next few seasons.. ;-)
After some relaxing powder turns at the Kitzsteinhorn, it got serious again on the Stubaier glacier where the Staatlichen course continued with the slalom course. Where I ended the NZ season racing against another guy for the most runs/ vertical meters, this was a race against the clock.
The goal basically was to be within the time limit set by our examiners, which is their average time plus 10%.. One chance only.. My natural instinct goes in “defending-mode” when it’s an all-or-nothing with big consequences, not “racing like” at all.. Add a lack of racing experience and no amazing racing-skills and the results aren’t that staggering. So this was considered the hardest part of all.
So the night before I did something against my principles, I spend some serious time tuning my board. As in my opinion skills should come before equipment investments, but I wanted to avoid lady luck to be against me on the tiniest margin..
So I made my first turns in years on a properly serviced board with sharp edges, if it made any difference to the results.. nobody will ever know.. I wasn’t fast, but apparently fast enough.
First practical exam; Check!
What followed was more powder, back on my home-glacier, parallel to general “life-administration”, car maintenance, birthdays and training on the dark side to prepare for more exams.. stay tuned for more on that one next time!