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World Junior Champs Debut

I'm writing today having achieved one of my biggest goals I've dreamt of achieving over the last couple of years, racing at the World Junior Championships.

This year's championships were held in British Columbia, Canada. Running from the 1st till the 10th of March where I was selected to race in the SG, Giant Slalom, & Slalom.

After arriving in resort on the back of one massive journey from Europe we had few days to settle down and adjust to the time difference. Having never traveled to the far West, jet lag was new to me but after a few days I found myself reacclimatised. Before racing kicked off I got the chance to do some training which proved really beneficial to adapt to the snow conditions in resort.

As the week rolled on competition came thick and fast,Super G to start the week. It's fair to say I'm laking experience on the speed skis, despite that I was up for giving it my best shot. Having completed the run with some good sections I was left satisfied, later to find out I had been penalised for my start. This is something I will never do again, but happy to have learnt from my mistake.

The next race of the week was Giant Slalom, one minute and twenty seconds of high intensity turns a great challenge for the worlds best. Starting towards the back of the pack I was hungry to get stuck into run one. Starting the run with a really strong top section I was confident to push harder than ever towards the bottom of the run. Unfortunately towards the finish I made a big mistake costing me a lot of time, later discovering that i had cracked my helmet during the run and unable to start my second run.

The chance to end my championships on a high, time for the slalom race! As a lad from the dry slopes it almost feels like slalom is in my blood, confident and raring to go for the final race of the week. Starting with bib 52 on the first run I would need a great run to jump into the top 30, this would allow me to start one of the first on the the second run. Unfortunately with a few mistakes towards the bottom of my run I was able to make the big jump forward and placed 38th. Hungry to finish the day in the top 30 I pushed hard in the second run. With a better run I ended up finishing 31st, unlucky finishing just outside the 30.

Heading back home I feel extremely privileged to have raced at such an amazing event. Unfortunately I feel like I didn't show the world what I am capable of but I am happy to have learnt of lot of valuable lessons which will prove really important in the future. Now the countdown begins to next years championships where I'll be aiming to be in medal contention.

A massive thanks goes to everyone who has supported me, your help has shaped me and allowed me to be the athlete I am now. You guys are the best!

Thanks for reading and best wishes,

Rob Holmes

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