Calgary, Alta. (September 1, 2017) – Marielle Thompson is the world’s number one ranked female ski cross athlete and reigning Olympic champion. She closed out the 2016-17 season with eight podiums, seven of which were first-place finishes. At just 25-years-old, this accomplished ski cross veteran has had more success than most athletes dream of.
With an Olympic year looming, we caught up with the queen of ski cross to see how she’s ensuring her momentum continues into the coming season.
Alpine Canada: During the summer months, you’ve spent a lot of time in the gym. What have you been working on?
Marielle Thompson: I’ve been building on what I have been working on in the past. I’m doing a lot of strength and power workouts, as well as building on agility training to keep my muscles firing. I had some good results from fitness testing at the beginning of the dryland season, but there is still room to improve. I’m hoping to build on my momentum from last season to be as strong and fast as possible heading into the fall and the 2017-18 season.
Alpine Canada: When is your first on-snow camp?
Marielle Thompson: Our first on-snow camp of the season is underway on the snow field in Mt. Hood, Oregon. I’ll be focusing on technical skiing with lots of drills and time in giant slalom gates. I’ll also be working on start training and continue with both my dryland and lots of mountain biking with the team.
Alpine Canada: After a successful season, what will you be focusing on to continue that momentum into the 2017-18 season?
Marielle Thompson: I always go back to working my hardest over the summer and building on what I accomplished last season. I have a lot of positives from last year to take into the new season but I know there is still room to grow and I’m always looking for ways to improve. I’ll continue to push my technical skiing and work on my weaknesses in the gym.
Alpine Canada: What are your goals this season?
Marielle Thompson: Going into the season I have high expectations for myself. It’s going to be challenging as always with the field growing and getting stronger each year so I have to make sure to keep looking ahead and pushing myself. Every time I push out of the start gate, I’m going out to win and to challenge myself. My goal this season is to race my best, manage personal expectations, and ski well from race-to-race.
Alpine Canada: Congratulations on your new partnership with CIBC. What does it mean to be affiliated with a brand that is deeply Canadian?
Marielle Thompson: It’s an honour to partner with CIBC. They’ve been rooted in Canadian history since the beginning with both Canada and CIBC celebrating their 150th birthday's this year. 2017 has been exciting and I can’t wait for another season of representing both CIBC and Canada on the world stage.
Alpine Canada: The final World Cup race before the Olympics is on home snow in Canada. How important is that to you?
Marielle Thompson: It’s an exciting opportunity to have the final World Cup race before the Olympics in Canada. It’ll be nice to have the support of our friends and family at the race, to have such a great support system before the Olympics will be awesome. I also think it will be great to ski a course built by part of the team who will be building the course in Pyeongchang!
Alpine Canada: You’ve had a test event at the Olympic venue. Are you excited about heading to South Korea?
Marielle Thompson: I really enjoyed racing in South Korea during our test event. The course was really fun with big jumps and a few new features we hadn’t seen before. I hope the course is as innovative as last time. The people were all really friendly and welcoming. I’m looking forward to going back to South Korea for the Olympics.
Follow Marielle Thompson on Instagram (@bigairmar) to see how this reigning Olympic champion is prepping for the season and the upcoming Games.