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Shigakogen - January 2013
January 12th 2013
After a 4 and a half hours drive from Haneda airport, crossing the centre of Tokyo, we arrived in the car-free "village" of Shigakogen.  

Shigakogen was the venue for the technical Alpine skiing events of the Nagano Winter Olympics in 1998 and our hotel was full of memorabilia including the Assistane Chief of Race's jackets (he was also the owner of the hotel!).

A massive bonus was that here, not only did we have a wardrobe, we also had our own shower room and the outside temperature was around 15 degrees warmer than in Nukabira.

After a 6am breakfast the next morning, we were onto the hill outside the hotel's front door for some training before two more days of GS races.  No sooner had we put our skis onto the hill than we saw a troupe of about 30 snow monkeys, some carrying babies on their backs!

The races we were competing in were the University races and they are quite a big event with some of the leading Japanese racers taking part so it proved very difficult on day 1, with bib 73, on a soft course of new snow with plenty of bumps and I lost control on the steep part of the course, towards the end.

On the second day, I had a better bib because the new FIS points list had just come out.  So I had a less bumpy ride wearing bib 45 but there was still too much work to make it into the flip and I ended up disappointed with the score after the success of Nukabira.

I have to mention the Volkl representatives who were at the races - they were a big help in the start gate to me and to Tory; checking and adjusting our bindings.  It made me feel like a real professional!

We headed back to Tokyo straight after the last race and arrived back in Munich yesterday to join up with our race team in Italy.  In all, an interesting and successful trip.