Chelsea skier to represent Canada at 2021 World Cup
Chelsea skier Katherine Stewart-Jones has been selected by Nordiq Canada to represent Canada on the 2021 Cross-Country Ski World Cup circuit, according to a press release Dec. 19.
Stewart-Jones, a member of Nakkertok Ski Club in Val-des-Monts, has developed into one of the country's top distance skiers over the past few years and is looking to continue her strong World Cup performance from last year in her quest for the 2022 Olympic team.
"I am very excited to have the opportunity to race this year on the World Cup circuit,” Stewart-Jones said. “I had a great summer and fall of training, so I am looking forward to racing again. My focus is on the World Championships in Oberstdorf, Germany in February."
Stewart-Jones isn’t the only Nakkertok skier, nor the only local skier, selected for the national team, as Nakkertok’s Pierre Grall-Johnson and Chelsea’s Laura Leclair have also been named to the team of 27 athletes, who will be heading to Europe in late January barring any interventional travel restrictions.
With scheduled trial races cancelled because of COVID, Nordiq Canada used an objective selection process to name the team, which includes, among other criteria, previous standings.
“Our goal is to field a team for targeted events in an effort to achieve the necessary points for Canada to maintain, or improve, the nation rankings that will allow us to secure maximum quota spots for the 2022 Olympic Winter Games and the 2021-22 World Cup season,” Kate Boyd, high performance director for Nordiq Canada, explained.
Providing it is deemed safe to travel internationally, the team plans to send athletes to five World Cup races from January to March: for the FIS Nordic Junior/U23 Cross-Country World Ski Championships in Vuokatti, Finland (Feb. 6 to 13) and the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships in Oberstdorf, Germany (Feb. 23 to March 7).
The following athletes have been selected for the team:
Katherine Stewart-Jones (Chelsea, QC)
Dahria Beatty (Whitehorse, YT)
Maya MacIsaac-Jones (Athabasca, AB)
Cendrine Browne (Saint-Jérôme, QC)
Laura Leclair (Chelsea, QC)
Antoine Cyr (Gatineau, QC)
Phillipe Boucher (Levis, QC)
Remi Drolet (Rossland, B.C.)
Pierre Grall-Johnson (Ottawa, ON)
Russell Kennedy (Canmore, AB)
Graham Ritchie (Parry Sound, ON)