Calgary, Canada – John McBride and Frank Kelble have been named head coaches of Canada’s men’s and women’s alpine speed teams, respectively, as the Canadian Alpine Ski Team (CAST) shifts its focus to achieving podium results in the new Olympic cycle, Alpine Canada Alpin (ACA) announced Wednesday.
McBride, formerly with the U.S. Ski Team and perhaps best known as “Johno” among his peers, was part of the Canadian coaching staff last season that led the country’s men to four World Cup victories, the most ever by Canada’s men’s ski team. Erik Guay (Mont-Tremblant, Quebec) also won the men’s super-G Crystal Globe, becoming the first Canadian male to win an overall discipline title since in 1982.
“I’m very excited. We have a great staff with Marc Gagnon and Serge Dugas sticking around and we have a talented team, so I think that with a little bit of luck and a little bit of hard work we will be in good shape,” said McBride.
McBride, a resident of Snowmass, Colo., joined the Canadian team coaching staff last November.
“The timing is right and my family supports it, that was kind of the biggest thing for me,” said McBride about becoming the head coach of Canadian men’s speed team. “So with my family supporting it and understanding that it is something that I am passionate about, I thought it was an amazing opportunity.”
On the women’s side, Frank Kelble is taking over as the head coach of the speed team. Kelble worked with the U.S. women’s speed team over the past five years, leading talented ski racers such as Lindsay Vonn and Julia Mancuso to an impressive four Olympic medals, five World Championship podiums, three overall titles, six discipline globes as well as 68 World Cup podiums and 34 victories over that span.
“I am really excited about joining the Alpine Canada Alpin team. The organization has a great group of people who are moving forward together, in a real positive direction,” said Kelble. “I like the athletes, the coaches and the administration. I worked for (CAST Athletic Director) Patrick Riml before and have a lot of respect for him. (Ladies team head coach) Hugues Ansermoz brings a lot of experience and success to the table as well.
“Personally, this is great opportunity for me and I was ready for a change. Change brings new challenges and different problems, but athletics is all about overcoming challenges. Canada’s women’s speed team has some tremendous athletes and a history of success,” added Kelble, who has 19 years experience coaching with the U.S. Ski Team and coached at the University of Colorado prior to that.
David White, who has past experience coaching with the Canadian Alpine Ski Team, is returning as an assistant coach on the women’s speed team.
“Both Johno and Frank are experienced leaders who are used to coaching champions and know exactly what it takes to put ski racers on the podium,” said ACA Chief Athletics Officer Max Gartner. “The men’s speed team got a real sense of how Johno coaches and they learned how to interact and build a relationship with him. His enthusiasm and personality is definitely something that sets him apart as well. He brought a positive energy to the team last season which is a huge asset.”
Prior to joining the Canadian team, McBride coached U.S. Ski Team athletes to Olympic and World Cup medals for more than a decade, leading Bode Miller to Olympic silver medal performances in 2002 and the overall Crystal Globe in 2005 and 2008 as well as Daron Rahlves to an impressive 12 World Cup victories.
ACA also announced that experienced World Cup coach Rewk Patten has joined the staff of Canada’s men’s speed team.
Dusan Grasic, who lives in Inveremere, British Columbia, remains the head coach of the Canadian men’s technical team while Whistler, British Columbia resident Jim Pollock returns as women’s technical team head coach.
Speed team coaches work with athletes in the speed disciplines including downhill and super G while technical coaches focus on the giant slalom and slalom.
2010-11 CANADIAN ALPINE SKI TEAM COACHING STAFF
* Patrick Riml – Athletic Director (CAST)
WORLD CUP MEN’S PROGRAM
* Head Coach – Paul Kristofic
WORLD CUP SPEED GROUP
* Head Coach – John McBride
* Assistant Coach – Serge Dugas
* Assistant Coach – Rewk Patten
* Assistant Coach – Marc Gagnon
* Physiotherapist – Julie Harvey
* Multimark – Shawn Gaisford
* Multimark – Marko Skube
* Atomic Service – Eric Schnepfleiter
* Rossignol Service – Gernot Grasser
WORLD CUP TECHNICAL GROUP
* Head Coach – Dusan Grasic
* Assistant Coach – John Crichton
* Multimark – Robi Kristan
* Rossignol Service – Philippe Petit Jean
WORLD CUP LADIES PROGRAM
* Head Coach – Hugues Ansermoz
WORLD CUP SPEED GROUP
* Head Coach – Frank Kelble
* Assistant Coach – David White
* Multimark – Pavel Zurek
* Multimark – Marco Zambelli
WORLD CUP TECHNICAL GROUP
* Head Coach – Jim Pollock
* Assistant Coach – Tim Gfeller
* Assistant Coach – Jay Keddy
* Multimark – John Mulligan
* Multimark – Martin Holzmeister
* Matt Price – Director of Sport Science
* Matt Jordan – Conditioning Coach
* Tom Smith – Conditioning Coach
* Jean-François Rapatel – Athletic Director (National)
* Kip Harrington – Coach (Men)
* Jean-Sébastien Labrie – Coach (Ladies)