Sun Peaks hosts first ski cross race

RACE TIME: Sun Peaks will host its first sanctioned ski cross races starting Dec. 16. - Photo by Jamie Shinkewski
RACE TIME: Sun Peaks will host its first sanctioned ski cross races starting Dec. 16. – Photo by Jamie Shinkewski

Sun Peaks will host its first official ski cross race from Dec. 16 to 18.

The first day of racing will serve as a qualifier for the Youth Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway in February. The Games will feature the top 32 ski cross racers from around the world born in 1998 and 1999.

Four men and four women will race down the ski cross track built on OSV run, vying to represent Canada in Norway. Only one male and one female racer will be selected to go to Lillehammer.

“It would be super awesome, a great experience to represent Canada and a great learning experience as well,” said Zoe Chore, 17, of Cranbrook, B.C., who will compete for the female spot.

“I’m just happy that I’m in the age category to make it,” said Reece Howden, 17, of Cultus Lake, B.C. “Knowing that I might get a chance to go back (to Europe) soon is really cool.”

The Youth Olympic Games qualifying race will be followed by two days of FIS ski cross races.

Canada Ski Cross has hosted camps in Sun Peaks in the past, but it is the first time sanctioned ski cross races will take place at the resort. The newly formed NextGen development team has also trained on the mountain for the first time.

“There’s great support here,” said Willy Raine, athletic director for Canada Ski Cross. “There’s good communication with the resort and support with the ski club and the mountain.”

Typically an alpine training course, groomers worked hard to convert the OSV run into a good ski cross venue.

“I think the course should be really nice. They’ve got a lot of natural terrain and they’re building some stuff up too, so it should be good,” Chore said.

Volunteers are still needed for the event. Anyone interested in lending a hand is asked to contact Al Raine at alraine@telus.net.

Photo by Jamie Shinkewski
Photo by Jamie Shinkewski

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