The Sun Peaks Alpine Club hosted the first TECK BC Alpine U16 Open Series this past weekend at the Nancy Greene International Race Centre. The competition was open to any athlete in British Columbia that is 16 and older, and saw 135 kids compete in both giant slalom and super-G races.
The three round series is the main competition U16 competitors follow in B.C.. Athletes results are calculated from the Sun Peaks, Kimberley, and Apex competitions to qualify them for U16 Nationals and Whistler Cup. Coming into this weekend’s competition, Sun Peaks Racers head coach Montana Molyneux spoke to her team about setting a baseline for the season, to figure out where they ranked in the province.
“I’m really impressed with how our whole group did because you never know at the first race if their nerves get ahold of them, or how focused they’re going to be, with so many other things going on and so many other racers there,” said Molyneux.
Sun Peaks Racers had four athletes finish in the top 10 during the super-G competition that ran January 4th to 5th. Brynn Applegath finished second with a time of 1:59.27 on day one of competition, while teammate Noa Hooton finished sixth with a time of 2:00.30. In the boy’s competition Beckett Hooton finish in the top spot with a time of 1:53.27 and Liam Applegath in fifth with a time of 1:55.05.
Day two of competition Brynn Applegath found the podium once again ending in third place with a time of 2:00.00, Noa Hooton ended the day in fifth with a time of 2:01.81. For the boys, Beckett Hooton finished third with a time of 1:56.05 while Liam Applegath finished fifth at 1:56.48.
Brynn Applegath’s success continued over to Saturday and Sunday as she finished top three both days in the slalom competition. She earned third place overall in the U16 ladies Slalom competition.
With many of the Sun Peaks Racers, U16 team members being in their first year the next two years are important for their development. Molyneux said the athletes will have to decide if they want to continue and how competitive they want to be. Typically if they chose to continue they would join the Okanagan FIS team which is a regional program competing at a higher level.
This weekend the Sun Peaks Racers had the opportunity to see the caliber of competition they would face if they move up, as the Okanagan FIS Team attended this weekend’s competition.
“It was nice having some of the older kids there that have already been through the U16 level, to show our U16 how to ski and what the next level looks like. I think it also challenged them as well because there was a lot of younger kids chasing their tails, it was a cool mix,” said Molyneux.
Next weekend the Sun Peaks Racers will be out again in full force with the U12’s and U14’s competing in the Teck Zone Race. The U16 team will be practicing throughout the weekend and prepare for their next TECK BC Alpine U16 Open Series February 4th to 6th in Kimberley B.C..