There’s no racing like snow racing, but there’s no snow racing without snow.
The Reynolds secondary ski team thrived this year after two dismal seasons with little to no snow at Mount Washington.
“We fortunately had some great snow this year on Mount Washington for technical training and competing,” said team coach Heather Benson.
The school race season runs from January to March with six training sessions and four races.
In the Vancouver Island Series, Reynolds Grade 11 student Nicole Bogle was consistently outstanding and placed first in three of four races in senior girls skiing. Bogle qualified for the provincial championships in Fernie and placed 19th and 23rd out of 65 skiers in the grand slalom and grand slalom all-terrain, respectively.
Snowboarder Simon Lambrechts, Grade 12, was in the top 10 in all four races, finishing in fourth place in the final race.
A third member, Grade 11 student Haley Stonell, participated in team training and events but didn’t race this year.
Benson has her fingers crossed for another snow-filled season in 2017 and hopes to draw more skiers and snowboarders to the team.
“Athletes find their skills from other sports and activities transfer effectively over to skiing and snowboarding, and everyone noticeably improves in their racing technique as the season progresses,” Benson said.
The team members, and friends, joined fitness coach Karen Bogle for early morning training sessions twice per week.
“Karen Bogle and Tim Bogle (technical co-coach) helped bring a special level of enthusiasm and expertise to the team, for which we are immensely grateful,” Benson said.
“It is a wonderful opportunity for students to get outdoors and connect with nature, see more of our beautiful West Coast scenery, meet athletes from other schools and improve their technique and confidence in a sport they can participate in lifelong,” Benson said.
Benson started the team six years ago and last year helped Oak Bay secondary to mobilize a team, the only other one on the South Island.