Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Lake Placid North American Cup #6/ European Championship Trials

Qualifying for the European Championships (Ridnaun, Italy) has been my goal all year! The team selection was this weekend in Lake Placid, New York and was based on two races (sprint/pursuit). I relied completely on my skiing to carry me through some "rough" shooting and finish 3rd qualified, behind National Team members Marc-andre Bedard and Tyson Smith. The tour includes:
1. European Championships U26, Ridnaun, ITA., Feb.21-27
2. Alpen Cup, ITA, March 4-6
3. IBU Cup #8, Annecy, FRA, March 10-13

It would be my first senior tour with the Canadian Team and would be an amazing opportunity to perform at an international level. It would be the highest level I have competed at and would give me a good indication of the level I am aiming to reach. I'm skiing well and if I had my best races on the tour, I could be eligible for national team carding ($$$)! Everything seems perfect right? Unfortunately, the tour came with a $5500 team fees. This was a deciding factor in my heart breaking decision that I couldn't afford to attend. I hope to never use money as an excuse again, especially if it means turning down an international opportunity to perform! The costs of daily living, eating, training, and equipment are all an athletes responsibility. I receive less than a thousand dollars a year from my National sport organization which is even more than most athletes. I think its unrealistic for a 21-year-old full-time athlete to write a five thousand dollar check and not be worried about finances! This decision has increased my bitter-ness towards how sport is so insignificant in Canada and how expensive it is to reach your goals!

For the rest of the season I have Halifax 2011 Canada Winter Games, Cross Country Nationals (Canmore), Biathlon Nationals (Charlo, NB) and Biathlon North American Championships (Callaghan Valley, BC) in my schedule. I am excited to ski as fast as I can and leave all the money problems behind!

Check out the results from this weekend and leave a comment if you have an opinion!!

Overall Trial Results: http://nybiathlon.org/blog/?p=781
Pursuit Results: http://nybiathlon.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/noram6-pursuit1.pdf


Master T said...

I'd write out a $5000 cheque for you but it would bounce. I know you are disappointed but I also know your positive attitude means that you will make the best of the other opportunities you have right now. Thanks for updating. We all (G//K/L/F) enjoy keeping up with what the Neumann boys are up to.

Grace Boutot said...

Matt, I know that must be so frusterating to have skied fast and earned your way on the team, just to be hit by a roadblock. Money is a necessary evil...if only there was a program that actually paid biathletes for the hours they put into training. We'd be millionaires by now! Keep your head up and continue skiing and shooting like you do...you're such a great athlete. :)

Emma Lunder said...

Nice racing Captain Binks. It's so poopy that the Biathlon Canada team fees are so ridick, but after you win the lottery $5500 is going to seem like petty cash. GO TEAM B.

Anonymous said...

Hey dude, sorry about your luck. You're hard enough, I guess your time will come eventually. Leave your frustration on the trail, like a boss.

PS. See you at Nats :]