Summit County’s moguls moguls head to Norway
Ryan Summerlin February 28, 2013
For Mikaela Matthews, it’s not really a matter of training for the World Championships freestyle moguls competition in Voss, Norway, this weekend.
She’s already got that covered, seeing as she’s been earning top honors in World Cup competitions around the globe this season.
What matters in the days leading up to the event is her sleep schedule.
“You don’t have any time to adjust once you’re there,” she said, explaining that she takes off Friday for the Scandinavian country, arrives on Saturday and begins training on Sunday for the week’s competition.
On Wednesday, she went to bed at 2 p.m. and slept until 10 p.m., with the goal of staying up through the night.
She and fellow local athlete, Dylan Walczyk, will both be competing for top honors at the World Championships.
Walczyk earned his spot on the U.S. Team by doing well as an alternate on the World Cup circuit. Matthews was already on the team, but she wasn’t guaranteed a World Championships spot until she beat Hannah Kearney recently in the dual moguls event in Inawisharo, Japan, to take the silver medal. Kearney finished third and Eliza Outtrim finished fourth. Matthews finished 18th in the ladies moguls event.
With a maximum team size to divvy among athletes, the strong ladies’ moguls team was awarded an extra spot for Voss, creating a team of four – and a spot for Matthews to go.
“We have eight girls on the team. It’s pretty exciting to be in that top half. I hadn’t been expecting to go, but I was hoping to go,” Matthews said, adding that her lack of expectations may have been what led her to earn her way in. “I wasn’t stressing about it or anything. I was just skiing my runs.”
It’s Matthews’ first full year on the World Cup tour. Last year, she qualified for the second half with a top 10 finish in Deer Valley, Utah.
In Japan, Walczyk finished sixth in dual moguls and 18th in men’s moguls. His consistency this season earned him the spot on the World Championships team.
Matthews hasn’t competed in Norway before, but she also doesn’t expect anything different from Finland or Sweden – both of which put on “good events.”
“I saw a picture of the course on Facebook and it looks good,” Matthews said. “It looks like they worked hard and it’s a consistent course.”
She plans to treat it as another World Cup event, even though there will be fewer skiers there.