Hey, its Steve here. Like Jeff, in 2016 I saw how national teams used Yes Wax for success on the World Cup and wanted to try it for myself. But, like many others, it was hard for my brain to accept such a radical change in waxing approach. I kept asking: would it really work? And would it be durable over long distances?
I could see that Yes Wax offered a far easier approach to waxing and was far less time consuming and far less messy. But I needed it to work … and be fast. In 2016, I had finished second in the USA Vasaloppet classic race using traditional paraffin wax. In 2017, I wanted to win and needed a wax that would put me in the running for first.
As I built up to the 2017 USA Vasaloppet, I did a lot of testing on Yes Wax. It did take a bit of time to get a feel for when to use the various Yes waxes, but I could see they really worked and durability was, in fact, their strength.
But two days before the race, as I prepared my skis, I couldn’t let go of the traditional waxes, so I had to wax one pair with paraffin and the other two with Yes Wax. It was a funny sight – it took me a few minutes to casually wax two pairs of skis with Yes Wax and then over 30 minutes of messy (and effortful) work preparing my third pair with paraffin.
Arriving at the race site the day before the race, I could see the conditions were going to be interesting. After a few days of minus 20 Celsius weather, the temperatures were now warming up to above freezing. Some parts of the course were heavily shaded and still had cold, dry, natural snow; while other parts had slushy artificial mush. The Yes Black F2015 proved to be the superior wax and was what I went with for the big race.
On race day, it was going to start out cold and then warm up dramatically. By mid-way through the race, the Black F2015 was performing spectacularly. Coming down to the final sprint, I made it to the final corner in first and took the sprint for the win!
It was hard to make the mental shift to a whole new way of waxing, but now that I’ve made the shift, I can’t fathom ever going back to the old way of waxing!