Holy Cow challenging but fun

86 SKIERS TOOK PART IN SUNNY LOPPET

Leading the pack: Japheth Bucher leads teh charge down teh 24 kilometre course in the 2016 Holy Cow Nordic Loppet - Photo by Gunner Rasmussen
Leading the pack: Japheth Bucher leads the charge down the 24 kilometre course in the 2016 Holy Cow Nordic Loppet. – Photo by Gunner Rasmussen

Cross country skiers headed out on the trails in the sunshine for the annual Holy Cow Nordic Loppet on Feb. 27. There were 86 participants taking part in the four distances, ranging from two kilometres to 24.

“The track was really fast this year. On Friday night there was some rain and then it froze,” said chief-of-race Glenn Bond. “It was challenging conditions for both the groomer and the skiers to come down the Holy Cow (trail). There were a lot of people saying ‘holy cow!’ It was quite, quite quick.”

The numbers were down from a record of 165 skiers in 2015, but Bond said it’s a strong turnout for a Loppet in B.C. Participants ranged from under five years old to 74 years old.

“Nordic (skiing) at Sun Peaks has really been growing over the years and we’re seeing that at the Loppet as well with more locals participating in the event,” he said. “That’s one of the special things about cross country skiing is we have kids racing, and I didn’t look at the exact ages, but probably from ages three or four to 74, so it’s a lifelong sport.”

Big smiles: Maya Roberts poses with the Holy Cow mascot following her two kilometre ski. - Photo Submitted
Big smiles: Maya Roberts poses with the Holy Cow mascot following her two kilometre ski. – Photo Submitted

Trent Smith posted the fastest 24 km time, finishing over seven minutes faster than the next competitor. Zara Bucher claimed the women’s 24 km race by 18.1 seconds. In the 12 km distance Dana Manhard was the fastest male and Alyssa Manhard finished first for the women. Tristan Hughes posted the fastest five km time and Ava Kwiatkowski had the fastest two km time.

People strived to post their fastest time, but Bond said it was the comradery that was the highlight of the day.

“That’s the cool thing about cross country skiing, and sport in general, is how supportive everybody is,” Bond said. “All the handshakes and high fives at the finish line that, to me, is what makes cross country skiing so great. Everybody is out there having fun and supporting each other.”

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