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Intact Essent ISU World Cup Calgary

Zipping off my jacket, I take a deep breath and skate over to the start line.  The announcer calls out to the crowd: "And from Canada on the inner lane, we have Lauren McGuire!"  That feeling for me, was one of the most memorable moments at the Intact Essent World Cup in Calgary last weekend.  It was my debut on the World Cup circuit, and it is such an honor to have the opportunity to represent our amazing country.

I am Lauren McGuire, native to Ottawa, I moved out to Calgary in the summer of 2007 to train at the Olympic Oval and chase my Olympic dream.  This fall, I reached an enormous milestone in my athletic career qualifying a spot to compete at the World Cup. The Canadian World Cup team this fall has five rookies on the team, and I am one of them!  The World Cup in Calgary was a great experience for us to learn the ropes and step up and race amongst the best in the world. 

At the press conference, we had former team member and four-time Olympic medalist Kristina Groves help introduce our team, and all five of us rookies were standing at the back of the group of athletes.  As I was standing there, looking in front of me at the other members of our Canadian World Cup team - including a handful of Olympic medalists, World Champions, and our very finest in Canada - something hit me.  I was standing behind a couple rows of titans, behind a couple rows of athletes who have pushed the limits and who have found the courage to find their best, and are now the top speed skaters in the world.  I gazed over our team, and realized that I am part of a team that is aspiring for excellence, in everything we do and in everything that we are.  We are all searching for our highest potential and embarking on a journey to learn and grow as a person and athlete.  And I am honored to say that I am part of a team that is inspiring excellence amongst ourselves and amongst others.  Whatever your journey in life may be, go for it!  And surround yourself with supportive and empowering people!

So thank you Intact for being part of our journey for excellence, and keep cheering us on during the following World Cups leading up to the Winter Olympics in Sochi Russia this February!

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Standing behind a row of titans, proud to be part of this amazing World Cup team inspiring excellence amongst ourselves and among others.  Go Canada!

Lauren McGuire
@LaurenGuire
www.laurenmcguire.ca
http://sportcafe.ca/lauren-mcguire/

Photo credit: Bob Blondin