Our next state champion spotlight is senior Grace Cowles of Yarmouth who won the 2017 Class B Freestyle state meet. We caught up with her and asked her about her state meet preparations, her future plans, and her thoughts on race day.
1) What were your preparations leading up to the state meet?
The week before the state meet I tried to get as much sleep as I could and drank a lot of water. As for skiing, I did a couple of long level three intervals and short pick ups. The night before the first state meet I spent time with my teammates. We had a “ski prom” where we danced and got excited for the race.
2) How did you deal with the pressure and emotions that come along with competing in a state meet?
It was definitely difficult for me to deal with the pressure of competing at a state meet. Listening to music on the bus rides to the race site was very helpful. It helped me focus and channeled my nerves into energy. Also spending time with my team helped me to relax and focus on doing my best for the team.
3) What was going through your mind at the starting line knowing that the conditions were soft and warm?
At the starting line, I kept reminding myself that I had to be light and quick on my feet because of the warm conditions. I also felt reassured knowing that I would have fast skis because of my fabulous coaches.
4) You won the freestyle state championships. What do you attribute your fast race to? What was your reaction to winning?
I would not have been able to have a fast race without my wonderful teammates and coaches. We had such an amazing and supportive group of girls on the team this year who pushed me to do my best and inspired me to have a positive attitude. My coaches have helped me tremendously with my technique over the past four years and always do a great job waxing my skis. Thank you Morse, JB, Meagan, Aaron, Kalie, and Dr. Totta!
5) What are some of your best memories from ski racing this past season?
My best memory of ski racing this past season was the Valentines Day race where everyone dressed up. I had a great time racing with my teammates, Hannah and Gretchen. It was fun to participate in a less-stressful race as it reminded me of how much I love ski racing even though it can be very painful at times.
6) What is your favorite part about skiing and ski racing?
My favorite part about skiing is the community. I have met so many encouraging and hard-working people through skiing and consider many to be good friends. I will miss skiing with them so much next year.
7) What are your plans for next year?
Next year, I will be attending Wellesley College in Massachusetts where I will be running cross country and track. In the Winter, I’ll be skiing for fun in my free time.
8) What were your goals for this season and did you achieve them?
My biggest goal for the season was to have fun as this was my last year ski racing. This goal was definitely achieved and I am very sad to see the season end. Also, I was also hoping to win a state championship, though I didn’t know if it would be possible.