Calgary, Alta. (March 24, 2018) – RED Mountain Resort and its volunteers continued to battle tough weather conditions for the 2018 Sport Chek National Championships. Snow dumped down all day for the men’s slalom and ladies’ giant slalom national championship races.
Valérie Grenier (Mont-Tremblant, Que.) defended her giant slalom national title for the second year in a row, winning by 0.10 and Erik Read (Calgary, Alta.) was named the men’s slalom national champion for the third time in his career.
Grenier made up time on her second run after sitting in fourth-place after her first run. Grenier won the second run by .44 seconds.
“I’m happy I could make up time today and it was a nice surprise to be on the podium!” said Grenier.
Joining Grenier on the podium were fellow National Team athletes, Candace Crawford (Toronto, Ont.) and Erin Mielzynski (Collingwood, Ont.), making it the second podium in as many days for both Crawford and Mielzynski.
“It feels good to grab two podiums at Nationals in two days,” said Crawford. “I would’ve liked to have caught Val [Grenier] but I know my skiing was there in the tough conditions. I’m happy with the way I skied and charged through the rough day. It was a good race to end the season on.”
“It’s pretty cool to stand on the podium in GS today without having skied that much volume this year,” said Mielzynski. “I think every run here got better and better. The conditions were tough but everyone battled through and it was a lot of fun. It’s great to be on the podium beside my teammates at Nationals and I’m really happy to be here.”
Katie Fleckenstein (Green Mountain Valley School) is the U19 ladies’ giant slalom champion. Joining her on the podium was Sydney Mason (Craigleith Ski Club) in second-place and Alyssa Hill (Team Panorama) in third-place.
“It was a little wild out there today,” said Fleckenstein. “Both runs had low visibility and it was bumpy but I guess that’s when I ski the best – it was fun! I love it out here getting to ski with all my friends. It’s been great.”
On the men’s side, the Read brothers went one and two with older brother Erik Read finishing in first-place and Jeffrey Read (Calgary, Alta.) finishing 1.64 seconds back in second-place. Rounding out the men’s slalom national podium was Jack (James) Crawford (Whistler, B.C./ Toronto, Ont.).
“We’ve had all sorts of weather in Rossland and today we had some snow thrown at us,” said Erik Read. “Trevor [Philp] threw down a great first run so I knew I had to have a great second run to catch him. Unfortunately he went out but I’m really happy to be National Champ. I think the National Championships are really important in Canada so I’m super happy to have the title today. It’s really great to be racing with some of the younger guys who are bringing new and great energy into ski racing.”
“Racing Erik [Read] here is like the good old days chasing him down the track,” said Jeffery Read. “It was great to have him as a pace-setter. It’s always nicer when I beat him but I couldn’t catch him today!”
Declan McCormack (Whistler Mountain Ski Club) was crowned the U19 men’s slalom national champion. Asher Jordan (Whistler Mountain Ski Club) finished in second-place and Jamie Casselman (Team Panorama) finished in third-place.
“This is my first National Champs so it’s really cool to be here,” said McCormack. “It’s really well put together and I’m happy to be here. I’m happy with how today went and it’s been a great season.”
The second annual National Championship Team Event race was also held today. It was stiff competition and heated battles against the provinces. Each provincial team selected one national team athlete, one Canada Ski cross athlete and two provincial and/or club-level athletes.
Alberta One Team took the top spot today. Made up of Erik Read, Abby McEwen, Georgia Burgess and Liam Wallace, the Albertans battled it out round after round to be victorious. Ontario One Team made up of Erin Mielzynski, Kevin Drury, Sydney Mason and Karl Kuus finished in second-place and Alberta Two Team made up of Jeffrey Read, Ashleigh Alexander, Cassidy Gray and Trent McCarthy, finished in third-place
Ladies’ 2018 Sport Chek National Giant Slalom Championships Podium
1 – Valérie Grenier - CAN
2 – Candance Crawford – CAN
3 – Erin Mielzynski - CAN
Ladies’ U19 2018 Sport Chek National Giant Slalom Championships Podium
1 – Katie Fleckenstein – Green Mountain Valley School
2 – Sydney Mason – Craigleith Ski Club
3 – Alyssa Hill – Team Panorama
Men’s 2018 Sport Chek National Slalom Championships Podium
1 – Erik Read – CAN
2 – Jeff Read – CAN
3 – Jack (James) Crawford - CAN
Men’s U19 2018 Sport Chek National Slalom Championships Podium
1 – Declan McCormack - Osler Bluff Ski Club
2 – Asher Jordan - Whistler Mountain Ski Club
3 – Jamie Casselman - Team Panorama
Team Event 2018 Sport Chek National Slalom Championships Podium
1 – Alberta One
2 – Ontario One
3- Alberta Two
ABOUT ALPINE CANADA
Alpine Canada is the national governing body for alpine, para-alpine and ski cross racing in Canada. With the support of valued corporate partners along with the Government of Canada, Own the Podium and the Canadian Olympic Committee, Alpine Canada develops Olympic, Paralympic, world championship and World Cup medallists to stimulate visibility, inspiration and growth in the ski community.