Para-Alpine Season Preview with Head Coach Will Marshall

Nickname: Willburr

Hometown: Panorama, BC

Coaching: 15 years 

Coaching national team: starting his 9th season

Head Coach: starting 2nd season

Plans for the upcoming season:

We’ve got such a great group of talented and hard-working coaches, staff and athletes that I’m looking forward to see what we can achieve this season. We’ve got a group that works really well together and that is committed for this entire quad. 

We will of course continue to strive and to reach for the podium at every World Cup race this season, but the long-term focus is already on the 2026 Cortina Paralympic Winter Games and much of our work this season will have the Games in mind.

The coaches and staff’s focus will be on setting the athletes up for success by building momentum through every training session and race this season. We’ll be working on preparing for the conditions that we are likely to see in Italy in March of ‘26, on learning how best to keep the athletes healthy, fresh and energized late into the season and refining how we can have performance peak, as a group, come March. 


We had a strong finish to last season, we are all excited to get back to racing, especially the athletes. We really want to build on the momentum from last season and continue to improve and to be on podiums. We’ve currently got four athletes racing this season and there are expectations for all of them. There are goals for each of them and plans to race in all four disciplines, depending on their health, the venues and the conditions.

We have some other athletes getting healthy and returning to snow this season and some may race later in the season. Looking at the four starting the season:

Alexis Guimond (Gatineau, QC) is back on top of the podium last season and we’re looking to keep the momentum going this season.

Brian Rowland (Merrickville, ON) finished the season strong, and we believe that there is more success on the way for Rowly.

Frédérique Turgeon (Candiac, QC) was back on the podium last season and Fred is poised to be there again this season even as she builds her experience in speed events.

It was great to have Kurt Oatway (Calgary, AB) return from injury and to reach the podium last season. Kurt is racing with a new sit-ski and we know that he’ll continue to get more comfortable and to push for more results.

Highlight race this season:

In a season without a World Championships, Cortina is a really important race for us this season. It is possibly the only time before the Paralympics that we’ll get to train and race there. It will be important for the team, athletes, coaches and staff, to get a feel for the mountain, to learn from it, and to be able to apply those learnings in future training. We’ve already began working on preparing for the conditions that we are likely to see in Italy in March of ‘26. Using locations to train that we salt and seeking to find spring like conditions.

We had 12 athletes at the Beijing Paralympic Games and with just four healthy and competing at the moment, the more learning that we can have in Cortina this season the more it will help everyone as the 2026 Games get closer. We will have two athletes returning from injuries and some NextGen athletes who we hope will continue to progress and be ready for 2026. The learnings from Cortina this season will be helpful for everyone as we build to 2026.


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