Whistler Mountain Ski Club (WMSC) recently welcomed back developing athletes for two exciting race days at the Nancy Greene Ski League (NGSL) U10 - U14 Skills Event as well as the fourth annual Janyk Cup. Both events took place on the same weekend this season, with the Skills Event going on Jan. 28 and then the Janyk Cup on Jan. 29 for U12 athletes.
The Janyk Cup presented their first opportunity for many young skiers to compete against other clubs in a two-run combined time giant slalom. WMSC athletes acquitted themselves very well: Cecily Gibbons took first place with a combined time of 1:08.42 in the girls' event, and Olivier Courcelles prevailed among the boys with a time of 1:04.58.
Whistler's Ngaire Kelly joined her teammate Gibbons on the podium with a second-place effort as Sasquatch Mountain Ski Club's Ellie Eliason ended up third. Fourth went to another WMSC prospect, Evelyn Duffy.
Meanwhile, WMSC boys swept their own podium. Finley Wood raced to second behind Courcelles, and Monty Cormack earned third with a respectable performance of his own.
As a result, WMSC took first in the overall team standings, ahead of runner-up Sasquatch Mountain and third-place Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club.
"It was a spectacular weekend with lots of sunshine and smiles. It was really great for me personally to see all the young racers from throughout the Sea to Sky corridor up in Whistler competing and having fun," said race chairperson Andrew Kirker in a press release.
The Janyk Cup was created in honour of Andree Janyk to celebrate her unwavering commitment to volunteerism and sport. WMSC's mission of developing champions in life and sport reflects the leadership and passion that Janyk exhibited with her two children and those she came into contact with.
The NGSL Skills Event followed a multi-station format; including Start & Skate, Speed Trap & J-turn, Dual Slalom and Combi Course. Each team was able to test their abilities multiple times through each stage.
Athletes from Cypress, Grouse, Sasquatch and Seymour Ski Clubs, along with the Whistler Blackcomb Race Development Program, enjoyed crisp winter days with bluebird sunny conditions throughout the weekend. Conditions were perfect for both days, with firm, hard-packed conditions on Ptarmigan. The terrain was carefully prepared by the Dave Murray National Training Centre and WMSC personnel, and the course itself was tended by volunteers from all clubs.