Vernon’s Hannah Mehain competing in the women’s 10 km classic distance race on Sunday (Peggy Hung photo)
Some of the top cross country skiers from Canada and the United States took part in the opening event of the Haywood NorAm race series at Sovereign Lake Nordic Centre last weekend.
Over 500 athletes were competing in the national-level competition.
“This race weekend is always a fantastic start to the season,” says Sovereign Lake Nordic Club Head Coach, Eric de Nys. “Many first-time experiences for local athletes which is all part of building a strong future.”
One local athlete who did well was Junior Woman, Paige Latta, who qualified 17th in the sprint qualifiers and finished 21st in the heats on home turf.
“I felt good in the qualifier and went out strong pushing over the hills into the finish,” says Latta. “The home course was challenging but fun and made for a good battle with other competitors during the heats.”
The Sovereign Lake Nordic Ski Team, along with most Canadian cross-country ski racers, will travel to Canmore, Alberta this week for the next stop on the Haywood NorAm as well as the World Jr/U23 trials.
Former U.S. Ski Team member and Olympian, Andy Newell, also competed at Sovereign Lake over the weekend and won first place in Saturday’s sprint races. There were also members of the Canada National Ski Team in attendance as well.
This event was good practice for many volunteers as the Nordic club prepares to host Ski Nationals in March 2020.
Photo by Peggy Hung