2017 Newsletter #6


Short's Brewing Company 41st North American Vasa Festival of Races 

Vasa Newsletter #6           January 24, 2017


Haley's Comments


Vasa Nation! The time draws near. Are you ready for what our Old Trail Grunt Jim Heffner refers to as the "Best Damn Vasa" ever? Well, I hope so. The trail has held up nicely in spite of Mother Nature's rather passive-aggressive behavior.   And long term weather prognostications are good.

So no rock skis for you, Bunky. Bring out the good stuff on race day.

Here is a heads-up about a special visitor who will be joining us for the 48 km freestyle race on Saturday. I hope some of you get the chance to meet Dmitry Kovchegin, who is flying here from St. Petersburg (Russia, not Florida) to race the Noquemenon and then the Vasa. I Facetimed with Dmitry over the holidays and learned a bit about him: he is 40, works as a consultant In St. Petersburg, born in Moscow and is a triathlete. Dmitry completed the Vasaloppet (Sweden) in 2012 (90 km) and was quite a committed athlete until a heart condition was diagnosed which required open heart surgery.

Dmitry told me that his skiing has changed, so he has to be more careful with his heart. "I no longer chase people," he said. "I just enjoy the trail and work on my technique." I am hopeful that our Russian friend will enjoy the Vasa trail (also glad he won't be chasing me.)

Dmitry will be staying with friends in the area, will be arriving in Traverse City on February 7 but has to leave right after the race on Saturday. So if you see Dmitry, say Здравствуй. That's Russian for either "Hello" or "What the hell wax are you using?" I'm not sure which.

Coming up this weekend: the Volunteer Dinner at St. Francis High School Sunday, January 29 at 5:30. Join us for pizza that night if you think you may be interested in volunteering for a few hours during Vasa weekend - February 11 - or the week preceding the race.

FYI #1 Local skiers have noted that there are signs posted at the Vasa trail advising trail users to refrain from using the trail until conditions improve. Snow and cooler temperatures are expected this week, so hopefully you can get out on the trail this weekend.

FYI #2 Registration price increase is coming on February 1! Wow, registration numbers are up this year by nearly 40%. What are you waiting for? Pull the trigger now, Friend-O and save some bread.

That's all for now, Vasa Nation. Our Board is kicking it into the next gear to make the final preparations for the "Best Damn Vasa" ever.

Keep Thinking Snow

Mike Haley                                                                                                                                                                        President, North American Vasa

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Short's Brewing Company 41st North American Vasa Festival of Races