Winter World Masters Games 2015
I have recently returned from competing in the Winter World Masters Games in Quebec, held in February 2015. It was a fantastic experience. To my surprise and delight I carried the New Zealand flag at the opening ceremony. I competed in four events all in the men's 60 to 64 year old age group.
I finished near the back of the field in the 15 kilometre and 10 kilometre cross country ski races. To my surprise I finished third in the 4x5 kilometre Cross Country Ski relay and thus was awarded a bronze medal. I was the only New Zealander cross country skiing to they teamed me up for that race with two Frenchmen and a Russian. In my final race I finished fourth in the 30 kilometre ski marathon. I was delighted to also have an article written about me, attached below.
John Gluckman, New Zealander and Winter Sports nut at the Masters Games.
John Gluckman has come all the way from New Zealand to compete in the 2015 Quebec City Winter World Masters Games. And to get right into it " and away from everything else " he arrived early to train on Quebec snow for his cross-grounty ski events, settling in at the base of Mount Sainte Anne in early January to prepare in earnest.
John's first experience of cross-country skiing was in Norway at age 28. He was spending seven years working abroad with a side project of biking all over the world. At the time he was already a downhill skiier and foot racer back home, so he began entering cross-country ski races as well as marathons and triathlons.
On his return he caught the mountaineering bug, climbing Mount Cook and Mount Tasman, New Zealand's highest peaks. In 1990 he tackled Vinson Massif, the highest in Antarctica. Next up was Everest, followed by the rest of the 'seven summits' - the highest peaks on each of the continents.
It's not easy being a cross-country skier in New Zealand. Sometimes, John has to resort to skiing his way up and down the bunny runs and local ski hills, over and over. He rounds out his training routine with running and biking.
John has earned his stripes as a World Masters Games regular, having competed in the 2002 Melbourne, 2009 Sydney, and 2013 Turin Summer Games as well as the very first Winter Games held in Bled in 2010. 'It is wonderful to participate in such events," said John. 'It is great to meet other people who in some ways are much like myself. Such people who take part in these games are positive and are real examples that older people can still lead active and healthy lives."
John has never stood on the podium, but firmly believes that the success of the Games doesn't come from being the best, but from doing one's best. Still he finds it helpful to have that goal to work towards so he can push his limits. The beautiful Quebec City area is quite a find too!