JASNA, Slovakia — Thirteen athletes have been named to the team that will represent Canada at the 2014 Alpine Junior World Ski Championships in Jasna, Slovakia, from Feb. 26 to March 6.
The championships feature top young ski talent from around the world, with athletes born between 1993 and 1997 competing for the podium in downhill, super G, giant slalom, slalom and a team event.
Seven male and six female athletes from Ontario, B.C., Alberta and Quebec will fly the flag for Canada, competing against hundreds of the world’s best. Of the 13 selected athletes, 10 are members of Alpine Canada’s development team, including up-and-comers Mikaela Tommy, Julia Roth, Morgan Megarry and Ford Swette, who have each had at least one World Cup start this season.
“We have a very strong team, particularly in giant slalom and the speed disciplines,” said Kip Harrington, head coach of the men’s development team. “The competition will be tough. This is an unusually strong year, where there are several juniors from different nations who have scored World Cup points, won Europa Cup races and have been on the podium in a World Cup.”
Harrington added, “But we have well-ranked racers, and I believe we have a legitimate shot at podiums. If the boys can maintain composure and ski to their potential, they can do it.”
In addition to Megarry and Swette, the men’s team will include Broderick Thompson, William Schuessler-Bédard, Vincent Lajoie, Chris Steinke and Jeffrey Bell.
The women’s team consists of Tommy, Roth, Candace Crawford, Roni Remme, Valerie Grenier, and Jocelyn McCarthy.
“In selecting this team, our aim was to choose athletes who have the potential to win a medal or be competitive against the best athletes,” said Peter Rybarik, head coach of the women’s development team. “Our athletes are not the favorites, but at every big event like the world junior championships, it’s all about going for the win and with some luck anything is possible.”
2014 Alpine Junior World Ski Championships men’s team:
Jeffrey Bell (1993), Calgary, Alta. — Calgary Alpine Racing Club — Alberta Alpine
Vincent Lajoie (1993), Sherbrooke, Que. — Club de ski du Mont-Orford – Ski Québec Alpin
Morgan Megarry (1993), Collingwood, Ont. — Craigleith Ski Club — Alpine Ontario
William Schuessler-Bédard (1993), St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que. — Club de ski Sutton — Ski Québec Alpin
Chris Steinke (1993), Chelsea, Que. — Club Mont-Ste-Marie — Ski Québec Alpin
Ford Swette (1993), North Vancouver, B.C. — Whistler Mountain Ski Club — B.C. Alpine
Broderick Thompson (1994), Whistler, B.C. — Whistler Mountain Ski Club — B.C. Alpine
2014 Alpine Junior World Ski Championships women’s team:
Candace Crawford (1994), Toronto, Ont. — Georgian Peaks Ski Club — Alpine Ontario
Valerie Grenier (1996), Mont-Tremblant, Que. — Club de ski Mont-Tremblant — Ski Québec Alpin
Jocelyn McCarthy (1996), Spruce Grove, Alta. — Rabbit Hill — Alberta Alpine
Roni Remme (1996), Collingwood, Ont. — National Ski Academy — Alpine Ontario
Julia Roth (1993), Waterloo, Ont. —Devil’s Glen — Alpine Ontario
Mikaela Tommy (1995), Wakefield, Que. —Club de ski Edelweiss — Ski Québec Alpin
Release courtesy of Alpine Canada