Snowboarders, skiers on the rise 

Sports briefs: Warm dealt to Royals; Tenderfoot Boogie winners

click to flip through (2) PHOTO COURTESY OF HAILI MOYER - All Hail Haili Moyer was named to Canada Snowboards NextGen Team for snowboard-cross.
  • Photo courtesy of Haili Moyer
  • All Hail Haili Moyer was named to Canada Snowboard<0x2019>s NextGen Team for snowboard-cross.
 

Several Whistler snowboarders and skiers were named to their respective national programs when rosters were announced earlier this month, and that includes a number of athletes making the jump from their prior levels.

Three provincial team athletes are now part of Canada Snowboard's NextGen Prospect Group, as slopestyle athletes Juliette Pelchat and Finn Finestone will join Jadyn Chomlack, who made the squad last year. As well, Haili Moyer made the NextGen Group for snowboard-cross. Slopestyler Darcy Sharpe and snowboard-cross racer Zoe Bergermann are back on the national teams, as well.

Finestone, 16, felt like he'd have a good shot at making the squad after a strong 2018-19 campaign in which he hit the NorAm Cup podium and competed at the FIS Junior World Championships in Sweden.

"I was pretty stoked. I've been thinking about it quite a lot after having a really good season, getting lots of points and getting invited to Junior Worlds," he said. "To hear the news was pretty cool."

This is the first year of a three-tier system the national organization is implementing in slopestyle, with the NextGen Prospect Group being the first progression out of the provincial team. Next comes the NextGen Team before the national team.

Regardless of the changes, Finestone is glad to be on the radar.

"With NextGen, I'll have more opportunities. I'll be higher up in the rankings," he said.

Pelchat, the national junior champion, was also thrilled to join the local crop on the squad.

"I was really surprised, extremely surprised. I was also really stoked to get this awesome opportunity," she said.

Pelchat, 14, noted that as a result of being on the team, she'll have additional training opportunities to be able to improve her skills.

Moyer, meanwhile, is a more seasoned athlete with 10 World Cup finishes under her belt. She's been making a push to qualify for the squad in recent years and is thrilled to make it.

"It's definitely a huge opportunity to be named to the team. I've wanted it for a couple years now," she said.

Moyer, who recorded her first two podium appearances on the NorAm Cup circuit this season, said it's a big jump to the World Cup level.

"I feel like I did well to take that step," she said, adding that she's hoping to ride primarily on the World Cup tour this coming season.

Moyer moved to Whistler from Ontario in her late teens to pursue her snowboarding dreams, and it's been a benefit to her riding.

"It's definitely a game changer, how you ride and the number of days I can get on snow by being out here," Moyer said.

Meanwhile, Alpine Canada Alpin nominated its 2019-20 squad on June 19.

Eight Whistler Mountain Ski Club alums made the alpine team, with Broderick Thompson, Brodie Seger, Cameron Alexander, Jack Crawford, Kyle Alexander, Manny Osborne-Paradis, Riley Seger and Stefanie Fleckenstein all cracking the team.

Marielle Thompson and Mikayla Martin, meanwhile, are back on the ski-cross team, while Mollie Jepsen is returning to the para-Alpine team.

Warm dealt to Royals

Whistler's Will Warm will wear a new jersey in the 2019-20 Western Hockey League season.

The Victoria Royals traded for the Edmonton Oil Kings defenceman earlier this month. In his 153-game WHL career, Warm has 10 goals and 28 assists, along with 152 penalty minutes. He was named the league's Humanitarian of the Year after this past season.

McKeown, Vogel tops in Tenderfoot Boogie 50-miler

Aileen McKeown outlasted the 10 other finishers in the 50-mile (80-kilometre) event at the Tenderfoot Boogie from Squamish to Whistler on June 22.

McKeown completed the race in nine hours, 16 minutes and 40 seconds (9:16:40), nearly 13 minutes better than runner-up Frida Christiansson. Coming in an hour behind Christiansson was the top men's finisher, Matthis Vogel, who was third overall.

In the 50-km event, 17-year-old Alexandre Campbell placed first in 5:21:13, or 38 minutes better than runner-up Ronan Garvey. There was a tie for top women's competitor, as both Annie Horning and Paige Howat crossed the line in 7:20:07.

As for the 28-km contest, Guy Polden pulled into the finish 19 minutes ahead of runner-up Tarek Ziade, while Tiera Wilson was the top women's finisher.

Lastly, Rob Gialloreto and Denika Waddell were the respective men's and women's winners in the 13-km sprint event.

Kees and Claire Hut open for bookings

The Spearhead Huts Society announced that online bookings for the Kees and Claire Hut are now available.

As of June 24, those interested in reserving space in the hut can do so at www.spearheadhuts.org/reservations. The Kees and Claire Hut, the first of three planned modern huts along the 40-kilometre Spearhead Traverse, is on track to open on Sept. 7 as construction continues throughout the summer.

"The completion of this first hut is a huge accomplishment for our incredibly generous donors and volunteers," Spearhead Huts Society president Jayson Faulkner said in a release.

"We look forward to seeing the public explore some of the most picturesque and dramatic terrain in the mountains around Whistler."

The hut can accommodate 38 people, and has a self-serve kitchen and large windows so guests can enjoy the views of the Spearhead range.

Nightly fees will be $45 per night for the general public, while discounts will be available for Alpine Club of Canada and British Columbia Mountaineering Club members.

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