Interview: Ryan Cameron
January 15, 2001
We conducted a short interview by e-mail with Ryan Cameron
after he finished second to Andy Schakel in the La
La Palooza 15K race on Sunday, January 14, 2001. Ryan
won the race the previous year in a tight finish with Michael
- Skinnyski: Can you give us a brief replay of the race,
especially the last 5K? It looked like there was a pack
of five (Andy Schakel, Jey Carlson, John Munger, Mike Myers,
and yourself), then near the end it was just Andy, Jey and
Cameron: I got kind of a bad start. Some guy thought
that the race took a quick left and he cut across the
field in front of me and took someone out. [You can see
this in the start video clip -- Ed.] I had to pull up
so that I didn't go down. After that I was in about 8th
place. Mike got out clean and took the lead which he kept
for about the first Km. He wasn't pushing very hard and
no one was helping him with pacing so I made a move to
the front. Near the bridge I put in a surge to see if
I could drop anyone and I think that Mike and John fell
off. Jey went around me near the end of the first loop.
He actually got a gap on Andy and me but then backed off
we skied together most of the second lap. During the second
lap no one tried any moves until the last kilometer. Jay
took the lead on the final hill with Andy behind him.
I couldn't get around Andy on that hill so I sat back
and hoped that Jey wouldn't get too much of a gap on us.
Once onto the flat section the pace picked up and Jey
and Andy were side by side on the trail.
- Skinnyski: The final sprint looked tough. Can you describe
how that went?
Cameron: Well with about 400 meters to go I tried to
get around Jey and Andy, but they were both side by side
on the trail. I thought that maybe I could quickly double
pole by Jey on the right, but that didn't work so I back
off and got behind him, shortly after that he moved over
and let me by. I pulled behind Andy and looked for an
opening. With about 100 meters to go I tried to get by
on the right side of Andy but he moved over, I made a
move back to the left side, but I think he sensed me and
drifted back left. I didn't have much room and the trail
was soft so I tried to double pole near the end. I think
I was gaining, but I just ran out of real estate.
- Skinnyski: You went down right as you came to the finish
line. Looking at the video, I couldn't tell if you were
diving for the line or had tangled with Andy. What happened?
Cameron: After I moved back to my left I could see that
the finish line wasn't very wide. I thought I was gaining
but didn't think that I could get a ski across the line
before Andy so I just dove for it. (It did make for some
good video and the fans seemed to like it.)
- Skinnyski: Outside of some of the top skiers, the results
were all over the place due to the wet, humid conditions.
You must have had reasonably fast skis today. What did you
have on, and how did they feel?
Cameron: The pair I raced on was the same pair that
I used in all 3 World Championship Trial races in Lake
Placid so I felt pretty good about them. I put on Swix
HF8 on the most of the ski, with HF10 on the tails. I
would have loved to have had some High-flouros but Piotr
didn't have the MN Biathlon wax box. I also tried to rill
the tails of another pair of skis but that didn't seem
I think that my skis were just a little bit slower than
Jey and Andy's, but pretty close to their speed.
- Skinnyski: We've seen some of your results in the recent
biathlon meets. Are you pretty happy with your results this
season, and what's left on your schedule?
Cameron: I am fairly happy with how things have gone
so far. I started the season well with a win in the opening
biathlon race of the year in British Columbia, but then
December was not so good for me. I didn't train well,
had some rifle problems, and too much work (but doesn't
everyone). In January at the World Championship Trials
I raced fairly well. I was close to the podium on the
last day and that was disappointing. I would have loved
to have made the podium for the Minnesota Biathlon staff.
Those guys worked so hard all week so that I could have
fast skis and it would have been great if I could have
got them a podium. But in the end I finished 8th overall
and was about a minute from going to the World Champs
so I can't be too disappointed.
As far as what's left on my schedule, I have quite a bit.
I will race locally in some biathlon and cross country
races (Baker Shaker, NorAm Sprints and 15km FR, maybe
the Murphy Challenge) in January. In February I will be
going with the guys in Minnesota Biathlon to Soldier Hollow,
UT for training on the Olympic courses. After that its
onto Canmore, Alb in March for biathlon North American
Champs and U.S. Nationals in West Yellowstone.