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WMSC SX Racers Shine at Big White

Posted by Whistler Mountain Ski Club at Mar 15, 2019 10:21AM PDT
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Whistler Mountain Ski Club’s racers finished the Western Canadian Ski Cross Series season in overall top-three positions, including two wins. After the final event of the season at Big White, Jack MacDonald topped the U18 division while Jack Morrow was third, and Nick Katrusiak won the U16 crown.

MacDonald pulled off a win in Saturday’s race before taking sixth on Sunday to help him clinch the overall title. “This one was definitely a bit difficult because I hadn’t been on skis for a while, but I pulled through, so it felt really good to get (the overall title) at the end,” he said. Notably, several more experienced racers from the Alberta Ski Cross team were in attendance, so MacDonald was pleased to still come away with strong results, especially after racing against several of them in NorAm Cup action at Calabogie Peaks, Ont. It was a really cool experience racing them again because I did get to race with them earlier in the season in the NorAm races. I was testing how much I’ve improved over the whole year,” he said. “It was fun competing with them and eventually finding success in the last few races.”

In both the final race at NorAms, where he placed seventh against Chinese, Australian, American and Canadian development team racers, and in recent events, MacDonald said he’s become better at tackling larger courses that he’s more likely to see in the future. “I improved a lot in moving over the features because before this season, I hadn’t had a lot of experience racing on bigger courses with a lot more features, especially out of the start,” he said.

Morrow, meanwhile, overcame illness to perform well, taking second on Saturday and seventh on Sunday. “There were some really good highlights from every race. I had development in every single race,” he said. “This last race, it was the first race where I beat some of the older guys who had been beating me all year, so that was some good development to see there.” Morrow was particularly pleased to get the overall award, considering he attended four of the six events this year, and in one of those, he earned no points.

In the U16 category, Katrusiak took a win on Saturday and a fifth-place on Sunday to put an exclamation point on the overall title, which is all the more impressive given that he is young enough to return to U16 next season. “It was pretty rewarding,” he said. “Going into the season, I had no real expectations other than to have fun doing ski-cross. I knew going into Big White that I was guaranteed the win, but it was still pretty amazing.” In one race in Fernie, Katrusiak raced against not only fellow U16 racers, but U18 competitors as well. He felt it was a good experience and helped to focus his efforts. “I definitely raced a lot of people that are better than me, a lot of older people, and they really put a lot of pressure on me, “ he said. “It’s always good to race against people that are better than you. It’s good practice.”

While Katrusiak hopes to work on his strength and endurance this summer, racing the older athletes encouraged him to work on his craftiness for now. “I knew that they were stronger and I knew that the only way I would beat them is if I was nimble and I snuck through them. I knew I wasn’t going to win out of the start because I knew that because of my lack of strength compared to the, they had a better pull out of the gate,” he said.

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The late Bob Parsons – ski racer, original weasel worker, and lover of speed – had a vision that BC ski racers needed to learn how to ski speed events in a safe and controlled environment. So he loaned his name and good foresight to create what is now known as the Bob Parsons Memorial (Downhill) Race. Originally named the “Back Bowl Downhill”, it is the longest running race in Whistler. The Parsons Cup has its present home back on Whistler, on the Dave Murray National Training Centre, and now also includes Super G, which didn’t exist back in the old days.
As always, thanks are due to the organizers, coaches, and volunteers for their hard work putting together a great event. Huge thanks are also due to Teck for sponsoring this exciting race series.

The 40th annual Parsons’ Cup took place on Saturday, March 9 and Sunday, March 10 and consisted of 3 Super G races and an alpine combined race for each of the women and the men. Racing conditions were perfect, with brilliant sunshine, unlimited visibility, ideal temperatures, and consistent (but not icy!) snow conditions.

The top 10 finishers in the Women’s Super G on Saturday morning were as follows:
1. Sara Stiel (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
2. Jaden Dawson (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
3. Fiona McInnes (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
4. Katarina Kaludjercic (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
5. Meagan Doiron (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
6. Taylor Slater (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
7. Laura Keogh (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
8. Bella Bay (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
9. Dee Dee Lai (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
10. Ashley Perron (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
The top 10 finishers in the Men’s Super G on Saturday morning were as follows:
1. Matthias Shorter (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
2. Duncan Ross (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
3. Chase Burns (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
4. David Wood (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
5. Sam Fuller (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
6. Adam Usher (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
7. Dylan Stevens (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
8. John Nicolls (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
9. Sascha Gilbert (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
10. Markus Cordy-Simpson (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
The top 10 finishers in the Women’s Super G on Saturday afternoon were as follows:
1. Sara Stiel (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
2. Jaden Dawson (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
3. Fiona McInnes (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
4. Meagan Doiron (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
5. Katarina Kaludjercic (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
6. Laura Keogh (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
7. Amanda Miller (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
8. Taylor Slater (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
9. Bella Bay (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
10. Mila Plavsic (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club
The top 10 finishers in the Men’s Super G on Saturday afternoon were as follows:
1. Chase Burns (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
2. Matthias Shorter (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
3. Sam Fuller (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
4. John Nicolls (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
5. Dylan Stevens (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
6. Adam Usher (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
7. Markus Cordy-Simpson (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
8. Duncan Ross (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
9. Sascha Gilbert (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
10. David Wood (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
The top 10 finishers in the Women’s Super G on Sunday morning were as follows:
1. Sara Stiel (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
2. Jaden Dawson (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
3. Mila Plavsic (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
4. Laura Keogh (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
5. Bella Bay (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
6. Katarina Kaludjercic (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
7. Amanda Miller (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
8. Jamie Border (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
9. Ashley Perron (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
10. Dee Dee Lai (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
The top 10 finishers in the Men’s Super G on Sunday morning were as follows:
1. Matthias Shorter (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
2. John Nicolls (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
3. Chase Burns (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
4. Sam Fuller (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
5. Adam Usher (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
6. David Wood (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
7. Dylan Stevens (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
8. Duncan Ross (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
9. Sascha Gilbert (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
10. Ambrose Deck Stang (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
The top 10 finishers in the Women’s alpine combined event, which combined the Sunday morning Super G and a single slalom run in the afternoon, were as follows:
1. Sara Stiel (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
2. Jaden Dawson (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
3. Mila Plavsic (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
4. Amanda Miller (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
5. Katarina Kaludjercic (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
6. Dee Dee Lai (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
7. Jamie Border (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
8. Mackenzie Themens (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
9. Ashley Perron (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
10. Emmaleah Bryan (Hemlock Ski Club)
The top 10 finishers in the Men’s alpine combined event, which combined the Sunday morning Super G and a single slalom run in the afternoon, were as follows:
1. Chase Burns (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
2. Matthias Shorter (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
3. John Nicolls (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
4. Dylan Stevens (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club)
5. Adam Usher (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
6. Sam Fuller (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
7. David Wood (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
8. Duncan Ross (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
9. Ambrose Deck Stang (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
10. Sascha Gilbert (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
The Whistler Mountain Ski Club dominated the Parsons Cup, with their athletes taking almost 80% of the top 10 positions.
All of the top 10 finishers were honoured to receive their awards from members of the Parsons family, including Chris Leighton, Jim Parsons, and Julian Brumec-Parsons.
The overall Women’s Parsons Cup Champion was Sara Stiel and the overall Men’s Parsons Cup Champion was Matthias Shorter.

Race Report by Laura and Hubert Lai

Apex FIS SL Series Trip Live!

Posted by U18/U21 Program at Mar 9, 2019 7:32PM PST ( 0 Comments )
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Hello U18/U21 Team,

The Spring Break Special: Apex FIS SL Race Series is now live on LeagueOne for your registering pleasure.

The trip sheet for these races can be found here: http://teampages.com/clubs/6397/documents/205809

Any questions about the trip please contact Conrad (conrad@wmsc.info) and Kike (kike@wmsc.info).

Conrad Pridy
U18/U21 Lead Coach
Whistler Mountain Ski Club
www.wmsc.info

U14 Golden at Cypress

Posted by Whistler Mountain Ski Club at Mar 8, 2019 10:26AM PST
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It was a picture-perfect weekend for the U14’s Teck Zone Race on Vancouver’s’ Cypress Mountain. The Cypress Ski Club, along with their efficient ROC, coaches and athletes hosted some fun and challenging SL and GS races. Firm snow conditions made for some fair racing and allowed the usual suspects to reach the podium while some new up and comers made great strides up the results sheet.
In the SL WMSC athletes took three of the 6 podium spots with Alexa Brownlie winning both runs in the ladies’ race for the Gold, Cypress Ski Clubs’ Gaia Fameli was 2nd and Maeve Pretty from Grouse took 3rd. On the men’s side, WMSC’s Felix Shorter took the win, teammate Milan Novak was 2nd and Graeme Eder from Grouse was 3rd.
Sunday’s GS race had an even stronger showing from the WMSC athletes, taking eight of the top ten spots on the ladies’ side. WMSC’s Alexa Brownlie again took top honors, teammate Isabelle Bexton was 2nd and Grouse athlete Maeve Pretty was 3rd. The WMSC men took six of the top ten spots and swept the podium in the process! Felix Shorter took home his second gold of the weekend, Alec Waldrum pulled up from 4th place in the first run to finish 2nd and Milan Novak ended up 3rd.
“Our U14’s represented WMSC very well,” commented Lead Coach Henry Yeigh, “they acted like champions, enjoyed themselves and had a fun time over all. I was impressed with the way our athletes stepped up on a tough hill, especially for Slalom”.
The U14’s next big event will be the Provincial Championships in Purden Mountain, Prince George.

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7 WMSC Athletes competed among Team BC for the 2019 Canada Winter Games hosted by Red Deer, Alberta with alpine skiing in Nakiska and Canyon Resorts.

Sunny skies and frigid -25C temperatures greeted team BC in Nakiska to start the Canada Winter Games last week. The event kicked off with a Super G that was described as short and flat with a couple of fun jumps. The short nature of the course (45 seconds) rewarded perfection and any small mistake made a top-10 finish impossible. The BC Team boys struggled with only Grouse Tyee’s big man Taylor Nellis managing to squeak into the top-10 with a 10th place finish. As for the contingent of WMSC boys, David Wood placed 17th, Matthias Shorter 25th, Chase Burns 30th, and Adam Usher had a fast run going but was an unfortunate DNF within a few gates of the finish. After day one team Alberta, Quebec, and Ontario announced themselves as the provinces to beat at the games. On the women’s side, there were 59 competitors, 7 from BC and 3 from WMSC. Our racers had tough competition from our host province and our eastern provinces of Quebec and Ontario as well, who took all top 10 spots. Our WMSC girls fought hard to the finish and all clocked into the top 30, with Jaden Dawson taking 11th, Sara Stiel 21st, and Fiona McInnes 28th.

Giant slalom was on the schedule for day two and the athletes faced a challenging course set on a slope with two very steep pitches separated by a gentle section in the middle. By the end of the day there were only 28 boys finishing in a field of 69 with the finishing pitch seeing most of the DNF’s. It was a physically demanding course with only 4 of the 7 BC boys successfully completing both runs. David Wood had a solid 2nd run and placed 10th, Matthias Shorter 12th, and Adam Usher and Chase Burns were both DNF’s on the first run. BC Team’s Apex Ski Club’s Hemming Sola put in an impressive 5th place in the first run but he was unable to finish his second run. Sola did however give the team reason to be optimistic about a possible run at the podium in the slalom that would be held the following day on the same tough slope. For the girls, 60 competitors lined up in the start gate but only 36 finished the 2 run race. Unfortunately Jaden Dawson and Fiona McInnes were two of the 24 racers who didn’t finish the race. Sara Stiel brought it in for WMSC and successfully put together two strong runs placing her 14th.

Day three of the games brought slightly milder temperatures of -19C in the morning and -8C in the afternoon. Just like the previous day’s Giant Slalom, the steep slope produced a high rate of attrition within the field with race sets that continued to test these top Canadian athletes to a super challenging slalom course. Sola gave the entire BC Team reason to cheer putting two fantastic runs together to take gold. Teammates Chase Burns, Matthias Shorter and Adam Usher also had strong showings finishing 6th, 10th, and 11th respectively. Unfortunately David Wood was a first run DNF but the entire team was ecstatic to finally break the podium juggernaut and show the other provinces that BC skiers know how to ski fast on tough courses. It was nail biting for the spectators to watch as 23 of 60 girls failed to finish the first run. With only 37 competitors starting the 2nd run, it was anyone’s race to win and by the end of run 2, only 23 of the 60 competitors completed the race. Our BC girls were amazing with 5 finishing in the top 12. Jaden moved up 8 spots after her second run taking 6th spot and Sara moved up 8 spots finishing in 11th. BC teammates Noa Rogers and Brynn Applegath made it in the top ten finishing 7th and 8th respectively.

For Fiona, she recalls that, “after each race, emotions were high and I don’t really remember how I felt about my results, but for the most part I was happy with my skiing. After crashing for the second time in the slalom I remember being frustrated with my own skiing but really thrilled for everyone on team BC who did well. Sara reflected that “each race had its own challenges but we would have really benefitted from training on the race hill. Its Alberta’s training hill and Quebec flew out in Dec to train it. We would have benefitted from that as well.

The final event of the Canada Winter Games was held at Canyon Resort about 10km outside of Red Deer. If the athletes thought it was cold in Nakiska, they were in for a rude awakening on race day in Red Deer. The venue change was also a big transition for the team as they moved from the swanky confines of the Kananaskis Lodge with 2 athletes per room, to the athletes village in Red Deer where it was 12 boys to a room and one shared bathroom!

The final event of the games was the ski cross and it would be held in -34C temperatures. There was a frostbite warning and the wind chill registered -40C. Fortunately there was a heated staging area where the athletes could find shelter but the slow fixed grip chairlift was a challenge for everyone. The boys battled hard on a course that was described as slow at the top and fast at the bottom but good fun all the way.

Hemming Sola proved he’s one of the fastest ski racers in the country scoring another podium for BC with a bronze medal performance. David and Matthias both made it through the first round of 64 but were edged out in the round of 32. Adam battled hard but bowed out in the quarter finals. Chase did very well to advance and win the small final to take a fantastic 5th place. For Jaden, all she could think about was how fun it was. “We never train or race SX and it was so exciting. At the bottom I gave my competitors fist bumps and we were talking about how exciting it was”. Jaden and Sara skied well but were also edged out in the round of 32.

It was tough competition for the girls and although they realized it was very competitive, they all agreed it was exciting to ski against the top athletes from across the country. It pushed them to skate harder out of the gate and reach further for the finish line. When asked what was it like competing against the top U16 skiers in Canada?, Sara succinctly put it, “I have work to do”. As parents watching, our kids gave it their all and left nothing behind and are proud of their grit during these games.

Conversations with the 4 WMSC boys over the course of the games revealed a common theme. They were all very proud to represent their home province and they were excited to make some new friends from across the country. For the girls, having the chance to meet and become friends with other athletes from across Canada and from other sports was also the highlight and to cheer on BC. For Fiona, "My most memorable experience from the games was the last night after the closing ceremonies. The whole week I was trading pins with athletes and volunteers from around the country trying to get a pin from every province but on the last night people started to trade everything from hats to team jackets and pants.”
Coach Drew Hetherington from WMSC was one of 3 coaches accompanying the BC athletes and he felt the games were anequally engaging experience for coaches as their athletes as they were immersed into the rare world of top level athletic competition due to the incredible settings the Games provided. The amount of production, volunteers, and attention for the athletes was staggering and the conditions for racing were perfect; our athletes only had to put their best efforts in. The competition however, insisted on bringing their A-game as well. After the first day, and some serious rounds of navel-gazing the next two days were much better. Our athletes rose to the challenge and competed well. The experience was very positive and the team gained invaluable experience. They can all go back to their clubs and share lessons learned with their friends.
Some of our athletes’ parents were lucky enough to observe some of the interactions…and know that the entire CWG’s crew of WMSC athletes and parents are fortunate to have some priceless memories to take with them on their journey in competitive skiing and in life. It was a once in a lifetime experience that they will never forget. They wanted to thank all of the coaches, parents, volunteers and organizers who withstood the freezing temperatures of -20 to -30, and supported all of us throughout the week.