Friday, March 27, 2009

Ice Alaska 2009

Final week of the ski season this week. It is nice to be back to full on winter. Anne and Owen family organized home stays for the entire CXC team which is really nice. I am staying with Hunter and Carole Judkins and have felt very welome and at home. I am continually impressed by the hospitality of the Fairbanks community. I took Sunday as a rest day and had a great time skiing with Hunter. We went out for a really nice dinner in Fairbanks then enjoyed the Ice Alaska displays and slides.

Our house in Fairbanks is great

King Kong

My favorite

Skiing with Hunter. Hunter hasn't classic skiing in 10 years
but did great on a pair of my soft Salomons.

Carole, Andre, Hunter, Scallops and Ahi

The Ice Slides were really fun


Check out to see more sculptures and learn how they were made or click through their excellent photo show here (Photo Show).

Monday, March 16, 2009

Canadian Nationals 2009

This hill is part of every course and you approach this hill with a lot of speed. A lot of people have gone down on this one. I heard one racer in the Classic Distance race crashed through the fence on the right and fell down to the mud at the base of the tunnel.

Noah Hoffman, herring boning to 5th place in the 15km Classic.

Mike Sinnott getting after one of the tough hairpin corners

Icy conditions meant that I double poled allot. I was a long ways out, but this is still one of my better classic races (19th).

Reid Pletcher climbing into the stadium.

Matt Liebsch climbing the hill in the quarterfinal. Matt helped didn't race the classic distance race and helped us all with wax. Today I worked for him and the other Sun Valley skiers. We had 6 inches of snow fall before the classic sprint and then the sun came out. Klister covered.

The final race is the mass start 50km on Sunday. I am most excited about this race and feel good and ready.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Central College Regionals: One of my Worst Races and one of My Best

The first day of racing at College Regionals was one of my worst races in five years. I felt like I was all over the place, working hard and skiing slow. Although I only had one week to recover from the Birke I had felt recovered. I finished 16th over two minutes back. It sucked. The other CXC guys felt similar about their races. Although Bryan Cook was still in the top 3 he should have skied much faster.

I decided to analyze my race later and just relax and prepare for the next day. I hung out and ate lunch and focused on recovery. I went shopping for a new pair of jeans. Shopping isn't my favorite thing to do, but I do enjoy a good deal and it was nice to get my mind off of racing. GoodWill even had a pair of 30x30 jeans which are surprizingly hard to find. Mom usually gets me a pair of pants for Christmas but recently they are always size 33 or 34 which are way too big.

Day two was a 15km mass start skate race which is my favorite event. It was a new day. I skied conservatively and didn't lead more than my share. I took a few short pulls but being nervous about the day before didn't take many risks. The lead group skied a consistent pack and with 5km to go it was down to four of us. Jesse Lang, Santiago Ocariz, Bryan Cook and Myself.

Jesse led the final kilometers of the first lap and I felt bad because we were all just sitting in on him. Santi made a move to pass Jesse with 1.5km to go and with 750m to go I made my move, got a small gap and won. It was nice to be back in the game. Bryan Cook finished second and Santiago Ocariz was the top college skier.

The results are on the FIS site (click here)

Cold, clear, sunny weather made for great racing and spectating. I finally got the chance to take some pictures of the girl's race.

Lindsey Dehlin, out in front from gun to finish

Maria Stuber

Kristina Owen

JoJo Winters

Family Ski Day

It is great having the family here for the Birke, but really I don't get to see them much during or even right before the race. On sunday we woke up and went for a family ski on the Seeley Trails. The trails were in excellent shape for the Klister Klassic earlier in the moring. The Klister Klassic is a revived event that was originally started by the late Garry Pennman. One of Gary's final projects was the creation of a connector trail from the Birkie trail to the Seeley trails. Sunday was the first day skiing the new trail and it was fantastic. Just skiing the trails you can see what a strong impact Garry had on cross-country skiing. There are several bridges, a large tunnel and somewhere around 20 kilometers of trail. We had a great time skiing around on the trails. Although I made the loop a bit too long and we all had a little bonk climbing back up to the car.

Brian and Mom

Mom, Dad, Hons, Brian

Sauna Time

Time to jump in the lake.
Unfortunatly we couldn't bust through the ice, but it was fun tryiing.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Where is Brian

The kids at the LCO Boys and Girls Club have a 'Where in The World is Brian?' Wall to follow my racing and travels. My winter schedule at the Club although planned is rather sporadic and inconsistent so this is how I stay in contact with the kids. Every day I have been at the Club this winter we have gone cross country skiing.

I took this picture after hours. Usually the room is full of kids.

The kids made this awesome congratulations banner for me after my 4th place finish in the American Birkebeiner.

I didn't have my camera during the Barnebirkie but there are a few pictures on the banner that capture how much fun it was.

The Best Birkebeiner Ever: CXC Takes 1-2-4-6-1

The Birke was great this year. It was a full house of skiers stapling energy gels to bibs and getting everything ready for the big race. Mom, Dad, Chad, Alieta and Hons flew out for the big event. Alieta and one of her girlfriends cheered us all in at several points along the course. I think I had the biggest cheering section of the race on main street with another 11 Aunts, Uncles and Cousins. The extra cheering helped me win the sprint for 4th place. I would have liked to be on the podium with my teammates, but last year I was 5th and I am moving in the right direction.

The Gregg's Race the Birkie: Chad, Dad, Mom, Brian.
Tara is in Ecuador but we were able to talk to her about the race.

Heather on her way to 2nd in the CXC Elite Sprints Semi Final.
Sorry JoJo for including this picture, but I thought it was a good one.

CXC taking control of the race 100m off of the line

My dad put together a great little slide show of the 2009 event. There are a number of great pictures in it so check it out. Slide Show (Click Here).

Also, Congratulations to the 2009 American Birkebeiner Champion Matt Liebsch. Check out his review of the race and some of his pictures on his web site at We made a number of planned attacks as a team, so it was great to see them work and have all the men finish in the top 6.

Gus Kaeding made it an even better day for CXC, winning the 54k Classical Birkebeiner over skiing legend Bjorn Dahle. Gus does an excellent job telling the story of his first marathon here.

Monday, March 2, 2009

SuperTour Win

Bryan Cook and I won the Freestyle Team Sprint at the Madison SuperTour. The SuperTour is the national race circuit that I follow around the country. I have had several second and third place finishes, but this was my first win on the circuit. My biggest pay day as a xc ski racer so far too.

Colin Rogers/David Chamberlain, Bryan Cook/Brian Gregg, Lars Flora/Mike Sinnot

Two-person teams contest the team sprint relay. Skiers raced a 900 meter loop on the streets of Madison, WI and tagged their partner who went off to ski the same loop. Each teamates skis the loop four times for a total of eight laps

Cook made some aggressive moves to put us in second place going into the final tag. In a good position I was able to take the lead on the final climb and keep it to the finish. We had some good luck today being seeded in a much easier semi-final. Cook and I were able to ski easy in our semi, where the teams in the other semi posted times that were just as fast as the final.

Brian, Chasing Sinnot around the 180 at the top of the course

I joined in on the 1km fun run around the capitol before the afternoon races. I thought it was going to be easy, but there were some fast young runners out there.

Colin Rogers and Brian Gregg (right) Final 100m of the Madison Super Tour

Fit City Kids is another part of the Madison Winter Festival. Besides the racing, it is my favorite part. The Bicycle Doctor brings a ton of ski equipment and youth have the opportunity to try cross-country skiing. For many of the kids this is their first time ever on skis. Many of the SuperTour athletes come to help coach and encourage the next generation in this great sport. It was a busy morning running and skiing with the kids and I lost track of time and was out skiing longer than planned. I thought I might be a little tired for the race, but I think that having fun with the kids made me race even faster in the end.

Results at