Canada Ski Cross to get boost from governing body of Canadian ski racing

Posted By: The Ski Channel on June 22, 2010 9:11 am

Canada’s current and future ski cross racers will see increased support from Alpine Canada Alpin (ACA), the governing body of ski racing in Canada, starting this World Cup season.

Canada Ski Cross (CSC) will be led by ACA, resulting in such perks as the shared use of facilities, technical expertise and other resources. ACA Chief Athletics Officer Max Gartner said having Alpine and Ski Cross under one group in Canada will bring more opportunities for skiers to reach their true potential and create more winter sport champions in Canada.

“We believe this partnership makes the most sense for the athletes. That integrating Ski Cross and Alpine will enable the smoothest transitions for athletes who are possibly making the switch. Ultimately, it is aimed at maximizing our ability to create champions in each respective discipline,” said Gartner.

“Canadian ski cross athletes quickly developed into an international power thanks to the financial support provided by Own the Podium leading into the 2010 Olympic Winter Games,” said Nick Bass, high-performance advisor of ACA’s Own the Podium program. “With the increased resources now available through the integration with Alpine Canada Alpin, ski cross athletes are well positioned to build on their international success well into the future.”

Canada was among the first countries to create a national ski cross organization after the International Olympic Committee (IOC) approved the sport as part of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games.

“The sport of ski cross has its roots deeply embedded in the alpine system with many current national ski cross team members getting their start in alpine. We are looking forward to working together to develop world class ski cross racers,” said Canada Ski Cross Sport Director Dave Ellis, who had been the Director of Sport Science for ACA prior to taking his current position in 2008.

Canada has already seen immediate success in ski cross including a gold medal performance and three additional Top 6 performances at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games.

Ashleigh McIvor, of Whistler, British Columbia, who became the first women’s Olympic Ski Cross champion said, “I’m really excited about the direction that alpine will take us in. The skill set that athletes develop training as alpine racers is essential in producing strong ski cross competitors, and it will be great to utilize the resources of the established, well-oiled machine that the alpine organization has become,” McIvor said.

Prior to the merger, ACA was already the governing body responsible for alpine ski racing including men’s and women’s national teams, the national para-alpine ski team and national development programs.