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Archive for the ‘GRP Limelight’ Category

Girls with Guns – Lake Placid Gallery

13.Jul.2017 by Caitlin Patterson

The US Biathlon women (spearheaded by Emily Dreissigacker) put on a fantastic Girls with Guns biathlon clinic in Lake Placid on July 9th. Enjoy the photo gallery below, and click on any photo to see a larger version.

All photos by Caitlin Patterson.

#fueledbyjustin Pre Camp

3.Jan.2017 by Kaitlynn Miller

Mary checking in here with an update from our “Justin Bieber” Pre Camp!!

With US Nationals being held at Solider Hollow in Heber City, UT this year, most of the “sea level” team searched for ways to get some extra early time at altitude before the races. We are very fortunate to have a teammate, Liz Guiney (nick-named lizguine after the long, lean pasta) who lives in Park City. Her mom, Julie, and mom’s boyfriend, Dave, graciously opened their home to us for a pre camp. It was a great opportunity to train on the courses, adjust to the altitude, and get in our holiday social fix. Oh and eat some amazing food!

Dave happens to be a culinary expert and was the personal chef for Justin Bieber and Kendall Jenner in early December (no jokes here). So Dave took home all the left over food that Justin (yes, first name basis) didn’t use. It was pretty fun to be eating Bieb’s preferred items. We are fully confident that we now are sponsored by him #fueledbyjustin. Our pancake breakfast would have been nothing without the Bieber Buttermilk, Bieber Vanilla, or Bieber Maple Syrup (Vermonter approved). Snack time was made even greater with Bieber Hot Chips and Bieber Ritz Crackers. Plus, Dave was able to tell us lots of Bieber stories. Next to arrive will be Taylor Swift, so we will probably return for a post camp 🙂

#fueledbyjustin New Year’s Day pancake breakfast, with buttermilk pancakes, berries, smoothies, and good friends. Photo cred: Heather

While in Park City, we had a fun filled, yet very packed social schedule. But don’t worry, we made plenty of time for recovery as well, knowing some of our more important races were right around the corner. Liz’s Dad, RJ, and step Mom, Deann, hosted us for a delicious dinner of burgers, salad, potatoes, and yummy toffee dessert bars. We enjoyed a very relaxed game of ping pong and decided that we should definitely stick to skiing. The next night, we tagged along to an Eve before the Eve party. I feel as if party doesn’t even cut it – gala may be more appropriate. The event was hosted at a beautiful house in Deer Valley, with amenities such as valet parking and a coat check. The attire was anywhere from jeans and blouses, to beautiful gowns, and sparkling bell bottom pants. And the decorations, sheer size, and set up of the house was anything but incredible. We debated between making friends and exploring while there, and went with the exploring option. We enjoyed yummy finger foods (but had our hand sanitizer in our pockets) that seemed to be endless, and took over the chocolate fountain for dessert. The gala made for amazing people watching, and we certainly enjoyed our very spoiled evening. We also made time for shopping at the outlet malls and seeing the new Star Wars movie. Our final social event was a nice dinner prepared by Julie and Dave with Liz’s childhood friend.

Getting all dressed up for the Eve before the Eve party. We almost fit in!! Photo cred: Dave

We are so so grateful to them for hosting us and letting us take over their kitchen, bathrooms, and bedrooms. These past 5 days have been great preparation for us, and we are looking forward to a few more days of resting, speed practice, and ski/course testing before the races.

A beautiful day to practice some high speed skiing at the White Pine trails! Photo cred: Heather

Walking through the parking garage to access the skiing. We were feeling pretty spoiled to park in an underground garage! And were thinking back to our fast laps in Slovenia with very similar scenery. Photo cred: Heather

Thanks to Skida for our new head gear!! We were getting crafty at Liz’s sewing on our new GRP and SkiErg patches.

Our last day at Liz’s house, we enjoyed an urban ski tour right from her front door!! This was right before the 24hr blizzard hit. Photo cred: Heather

We’ll kick things off Saturday with a 10K skate followed by a Classic Sprint on Sunday, the Mass Start classic races on Tuesday, and finally a Skate Sprint prelim on Thursday. You can check the results here:

Stay tuned for more!


GRP Limelight: Susan Dunklee

11.Jan.2013 by Steve Whelpley

Her dad went to the Olympics for Nordic skiing in 1976 and 1980, and now she hopes to do the same as a member of the US Biathlon team. Despite having skied much of her life, Susan Dunklee didn’t find the sport of biathlon until an ID camp during her senior year at Dartmouth. Once she had discovered the sport, she embraced it.


As we do what we do, whether it be the daily routine or our ultimate opus, we do it with a personal understanding or philosophy. Susan has a one-word mantra for both how she lives and how she pursues her Olympic goal: balance.


It is no coincidence that balance was a constant theme in the instructional Nordic ski video I borrowed from the Center. For skiing, you need literal balance as you shift your weight from ski to ski, but also, you need it in a figurative sense since the sport engages so many opposing forces like pushing and gliding, stretching and contracting, etc. Being a biathlete, Susan naturally faces these fundamental issues of balance. However, this is only the tip of the balance iceberg for Susan.


As her dad, Stan Dunklee, told me upon visiting their family’s veterinary practice in Barton, the difference between what he did (Nordic skiing) and what Susan does (biathlon) is that if she skis until she’s seeing red, she loses. For him, competing in the Olympics was a simpler matter of “go,” which is still far from an easy charge. Biathlon is an amazingly delicate balance of both athleticism and skill. In one continual competition, you must use two systems that work in direct opposition to each other. You push yourself aerobically while skiing, while also calling upon all your hand-eye coordination, concentration, and patience to shoot. As Susan explained it, you can’t be seeing spots when you pull into a range because the only spots you want to see are the targets 50 meters away. You have to try to control your breath and relax as your heart beats 180 times a minute, and you aim at a dot that looks like the head of a needle. While Susan’s dad, an Olympian, cannot imagine moderating his exertion, it is something that Susan has learned to embrace in order to succeed. With the start of this 2012-2013 season, Susan’s skiing picked up right where she left off, but she is still settling into her balance as her shooting gets it to where she would like it to be.


Her quest for balance doesn’t stop there. The day after graduating from Dartmouth Susan had the opportunity to start up residency at the Olympic Training Center in Lake Placid. She lived there for a while in what would often be thought of as an athlete’s Garden of Eden with doctors, endless equipment, a bountiful cafeteria, sport medicine at your fingertips, your every athletic wish come true. Despite being grateful for all these advantages and perks, Susan still found herself out of balance. Hence, why GRP is fortunate enough to have as part of our team. While an OTC yields many advantages, it lacked the “peripherals” that Susan sees as vital to her success. As mentioned in Lynn’s limelight, there are many different types of athletes. Sure, when you boil athletes down, there’s a certain set of requirements like a base level of dedication, certain amount of persistence, and “more concretely” x hours spent training. However, people train different ways and dedicate themselves to different degrees and at different angles. Look at Muhammad Ali and Floyd Patterson. Both champions, both very different. For Susan, having a life that is balanced with activity both inside and outside of her sport is important for her, and the Craftsbury Outdoor Center made this balance possible.  Susan put it best by saying, “Sports do not always go well. You have good days and bad days. You’ll have injuries. You need something to help maintain perspective.  You need an outlet or you’ll get stuck in your own head.” While training at Craftsbury and moving herself forward, she has also coached everyone from BKL skiers to GRP rowers on how to shoot for biathlons as well as participating in a plethora of other projects around the Center.


To pull a quote from the seemingly unrelated world of hip-hop, Akrobatik raps, “maintain balance and you won’t fall off.” Seems obvious especially in the balance beam sense. It also holds true for your efforts, your sanity, and your soul. Susan’s emphasis on balance is not only what yields her success in sport, but also in life as it keeps her on an even keel through trials and tribulations. If you know yourself, then you’ll know no bounds.

GRP Limelight: Lynn Jennings

20.Nov.2012 by Steve Whelpley

GRP Limelights occur monthly and showcase members and/or people closely associated with the GRP Rowing & Skiing Teams.

Lynn Jennings was one of the first people I met at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center. Little did I know that the woman, who came out from the faded Duck Blind to find her dog, Towhee, staring at my dog, Tanka, was a current American record holder, a former world record holder, a medalist at the Olympics, and soon to be a course record holder at the Head of the Charles. All I knew then was she had an impeccably trained dog, a personable air about her, and a contagious smile.

In addition to her work on campus as the Running Camps Director, Lynn spent every day of the fall training with us and consequently became an honorary member of the Green Racing Project Rowing Team. She listened to every one of Coach Roock’s pre-row talks with the same sense of determination and dedication as every other rower in the group. She rowed with the focus of a first year walk on in college, striving to make the varsity. You never would have guessed that rowing was Lynn Jennings’ second sport.

So why do these two anecdotes matter? For starters, you can see Lynn’s athletic versatility and how the components of being a champion in one sport can lend itself to another. Lynn Jennings is already a champion in the running world. She won gold at the World Cross Country Championships in ’90, ’91, and ’92 (only two other women in the world have ever done this). She took bronze in the 10,000m race at the ’92 Olympics. In 1990, she set the world record in the 5000m indoor run. However, as of October 20th of this year, Lynn Jennings is also a rowing champion, winning the Women’s Grand-Master Single and setting a course record in the process. Granted, Lynn has rowed for about six years now with some regularity. Nonetheless, she beat out knowledgeable locals and Olympians in the sport to win in an athletic second language. When you meet such a person, one wants to take note of what makes him or her a champion.

Secondly, it’s relevant because of how she approaches her life. I may be sentimental or romantic, but I have high standards for the people that I revere. There are plenty of sports’ heroes in the history of the world, but there are few that do it without compromising integrity. This may sound heavy-handed, but in this day and age, many of our sports figures fall short of even relatively loose moral guidelines as they produce headlines about drug abuse, doping violations, infidelities, and misdemeanors. For me personally, Lynn epitomizes the ideal champion. She is highly competitive and extremely dedicated. She pours everything she has into each practice, making her a great student of whatever sport she does.

The amazing thing is that, while having these critical qualities, she still manages to maintain an upbeat and optimistic attitude. Granted, different people have different motivations. Some flourish with positivity, while others get their kicks from negative spurs. What’s remarkable about Lynn Jennings is that despite the perpetual, competitive fire that burns within her, she is not only a good sport immediately following any competition or practice, she is a downright peach. While I personally appreciate the challenge of countering an overly competitive lifestyle with a certain amount of levity, I am humbled by the grace with which Lynn balances her ambitions with her kindness of heart. In my opinion, her unique combination of being both a champion and an admirable, endearing person puts Lynn in the upper echelon of both competitors and people in general.

After the Head of the Charles, we bid a temporary farewell to Lynn Jennings. However, the GRP anxiously looks forward to the annual return of our running champion, rowing champion, and our teammate.