After a slow start this season, Whistlers Britt Janyk is emerging as one of the top young alpine racers in Canada and on the World Cup circuit. Whether or not she gets to compete in the 2002 Olympic Winter Games, however, is still up to the Canadian Olympic Association.
Most recently Janyk finished fifth overall in a combined event at Are, Sweden on Feb. 3, competing against the top names in alpine skiing. Her time of three minutes 17.71 seconds for a slalom and a downhill race was just 0.52 seconds out of third place and her first World Cup podium.
In the slalom race, she finished 17 th overall after starting the day in 58 th position, and qualifying in 23 rd place after her first run. On her second run she posted the sixth fastest run of the day.
Just four days earlier, Janyk placed 15 th in the giant slalom. Four days before that she cracked the top 30 for the first time this season with a 23 rd place in a giant slalom in Italy.
She was only one top 12 finish away from qualifying for a berth in the 2002 Olympic Winter Games when the deadline passed on Jan. 13.
In light of her recent performance, Alpine Canada Alpin appealed to the Canadian Olympic Association (COA) to add Janyk to the Olympic team.
"We feel the COAs requirements were too restrictive. She missed her chance to qualify in the GS by twenty-three one hundredths of a second, and she was after the deadline," says ACA president Kerry Moynihan.
"But the reality is she is one of our best skiers right now. She could very well be one of our best skiers at the Olympics.
"It would also be better for her to have one Olympic under her belt, which would be helpful for Torino (Italy) in 2006. Shes young, but we feel shes earned the right to join the team."
After her 15 th place finish last week, the ACA had a conference call with the COA where they pleaded Janyks case. The COA turned the request down.
The ACA then appealed to a separate administrative panel outside the COA that has the jurisdiction to overrule the COA decision. The ACA expects that decision to be handed down by the end of the week.