Despite the fact that the only real similarities between hockey and ski racing can be summed up as winter sports, metal edges and helmets, Nick Wilson, the vice-president of business and chief operating officer for Alpine Canada Alpin, has accepted an executive post with the Edmonton Oilers of the National Hockey League.
With more than 25 years racing, coaching and managing skiers in Canada and Great Britain, Wilson will take on a new role as the manager of licensing and merchandising for The Oil, effective July 22.
"Nick has been a driving force for ski racing in Canada and he will certainly be missed," said ACA President Ken Read. "I very reluctantly accepted his resignation. This is a tremendous career opportunity for Nick which will complement the 18 years he has devoted to Alpine Canada Alpin. We wish him the best."
Wilson joins former ACA president Patrick Laforge in the Oilers organization. Laforge, ACA president from 1996 to 1999, is now president of the Oilers.
Wilson coached the mens and womens World Cup teams from 1984 to 1991, and was part of the Olympic gold medal success of Kerrin Lee-Gartner and Karen Percy-Lowes 1989 World Championship silver medal.
During his racing days, the Quebec City native was the Pontiac Cup champion in 1981.
He is married to Canadian Alpine Ski Team alumnus Kendra Kobelka, and has two children who are starting to get into ski racing. A third child is on the way.
"Alpine ski racing has been my lifes passion and I will miss working in the sport, and with its people," Wilson said. "Its tough to leave Alpine Canada Alpin, especially at a time when the future here looks so bright. However I am very excited about taking on new challenges with the Edmonton Oilers."