Kershaw and Harvey, Twittering Odd Couple
|THE CANADIAN PRESS|
|Devon Kershaw knows teamwork ... and squishy boots.|
These guys are a Twittering Odd Couple, the kings of kibbitz.
It’s one of those things you have to follow for a while to get the real flavour, but one has to be impressed at the dynamic between these two guys and what it says in general about the camaraderie on a men’s cross-country ski team, which was an impressive fifth in the men’s 4 x 10 km relay at last year’s worlds.
Kershaw, 26, is considered the leader of the team, a guy who’s been slogging away at it for years to make a steady climb up the ladder and in the last few years has had some big breakthroughs.
Harvey, who turns 21 on Sept. 7, is a phenom, the son of former Canadian great Pierre Harvey, and a kid who hit the podium last year in his first season on the World Cup campaign.
Kershaw and Harvey continually trade little jibes in their Twitter posts, sometimes letting us in on the little pranks they pull on each other. There was Kershaw bemoaning the fact that Harvey had soaked his ski boots just before a race the other day in New Zealand. He vowed revenge and followed through, only to have Harvey chime in later that it was nice to race in dry feet since he’d been able to use his “pursuit” boots instead that day.
In a recent email exchange, Kershaw wrote about the importance of the cameraderie on the team:
"Our team (the Canadian men's team) has an amazing team dynamic. We all want the same thing - international success, yet we truly understand that the best way for anyone to achieve that is to work together in a positive, fun environment. We all have amazing training days when each one of us can feel invincible, and others when each of us are dragging our sorry behinds' through workouts, struggling just to get it done - and through it all we have a great group suffering and succeeding together as we prepare for a season.
"Of course there are times when things get strained - that's life. But for the most part we all get along really well. I think it's pretty unique for an individual sport - because when we are done training we'll call and hang out, go for coffee, play tennis or even go on spring vacations together to warmer locales. That's after spending months and months on the road together. To me that speaks volumes.
"Like in hockey - a happy team is a fast team. We all strive to know ourselves and when we are comfortable with who we are then things just click along in relative harmony. Camaraderie is key, because the reality is that in one's career there are going to be a lot more defeats that successes. Believing, supporting and celebrating every success that a team has (no matter if it's you or not) only helps solidify the fact that all the hard work you are putting in as a group is paying off - and your day will come in the sun."
Okay, Devon, enough of the lofty ideals, what we really want to know is what it was like racing along in those squishy boots.