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A little piece of history



Well it’s back to Whistler and time for a little spring skiing. Over the past few weeks I have been racing back east in the Nor Am finals and the Pontiac GMC Cup Canadian National Championships.

The Nor Am finals were held at Georgian Peaks in Collingwood, Ontario,. And the National Championships were held at Le Massif and Mont Sainte Anne in Quebec. Both races were exciting, and full of great moments for myself, my brother and my teammates.

I had returned from Europe at the beginning of March, excited to get back to racing on Canadian soil. So off to Quebec City I went with my teammate Gail Kelly in her sponsor car to the National Championships, our last race series of the season.

Before I talk about the races, I have to go into more detail about Gail’s car because it’s worth writing about. She drives a convertible Chevy Cavalier, in white – but it isn’t just your regular car. Up and down the sides of it she has decals from the dealer that had given her the car as well as a well-drawn skier with his head tilted slightly in (great racing position!). Gail’s signature is also decalled onto each side. We had a great time and got lots of attention on our drive from Collingwood to Quebec City.

When we arrived at the condos where we were being lodged at Mont Sainte Anne we were greeted by some great Canadian spring conditions – minus 10 degrees with howling winds. I thought to myself "this can’t last through the week, it’s the nationals, and it’s March, and we always get warm weather or at least some powder in Whistler." But I was mistaken. On the first day of downhill training the temperature dropped to minus 20. The sun was shining so it did warm up, but it wasn’t quite enough for my little toes in my little boots.

The following day was also 20 below but on this day we were also greeted by high winds that could almost blow you over at the top of the course. Our days on the hill would go something like this: course inspection… back in the lodge… two runs on the warm-up course… back in the lodge for hot chocolate… head up for your downhill training or race run… back in the lodge. We did have a few days where it warmed up closer to spring conditions but for the most part it was winter, winter, winter!

At the Championships we also had a dual event, province against province. The race was on! The match-ups went like this: In round one it was Alberta verses B.C. and Ontario against Quebec. The competition was fierce and there was definitely some trash-talking going on at the start… of course I had nothing to do with it. The teams consisted of four guys and four girls from each province and it was one run each in the red and blue courses as you tried to beat your opponent to move your team into the final round.