The 2010-2011 Cross Country Canada (CCC) Race Events Calendar, while still in draft stages, is heavy on new formats.
Three mini-tours are slated for the upcoming season, and while none of them are completely finalized, it would mark the first time in NorAm and Canadian history that such races would be held—much less three in one season. But tours have risen in popularity around the world since the inception of the Tour de Ski in Europe. Last season, the US Supertour Finals were held as a mini-tour, and the fever has spread to Canada.
The Haywood NorAm competition series kicks off on December 11 and 12 in Vernon, British Columbia, once again at the early season skiing destination of Sovereign Lake Nordic Club (SLNC). The first weekend of racing in Canada features a 7.5/15 k freestyle and a 10/15 k classic mass start.
The series then moves to Rossland, British Columbia, where Black Jack Cross Country Ski Club hosts the first three day mini-tour of the NorAm season on December 16, 18 and 19. The tour format is a 4 k interval start classic, a freestyle sprint and 10/15 k handicap start freestyle.
The series picks up again after Christmas in eastern Canada. World Junior Championship and Under-23 Championship trials are being held in Thunder Bay, Ontario at Lappe Nordic Ski Club on January 6 to 9. A 15/30 k pursuit, classic sprint and 10/15 k freestyle are included in the schedule.
From January 25 to 31 the World Junior and U23 Championships are held in Otepaa, Estonia.
Meanwhile, back in Canada, the Haywood Eastern Canadian Championships are the second mini-tour of the season. The championships continues to be hosted by an Ottawa area club, this season by Club de Ski de Fond Skinouk in the Ottawa/Gatineau area. While the details of location and race distances are not yet on the calendar, currently the mini-Tour will contain an interval start classic (distance still to be determined), a freestyle sprint, and a 15/30 k handicap start classic.
Eastern Canadian Championships is closely followed by Haywood Western Canadian Championships, held from February 4 to 6 in Kelowna, BC, at Telemark Cross Country Ski Club. This event will also feature a mini-tour, with an interval start freestyle, a freestyle sprint, and a handicap start classic (all distances still to be determined).
Canada Winter Games run from February 21 to 26, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, at Martock Cross Country Ski Club. The Games, first held in 1966, is an event held at two-year intervals.
World Master’s Championships return to Canada, as SLNC play host to the Championships this year.
The finale of the NorAm and Canadian racing season, Haywood Canadian Ski Nationals, is held in Canmore, Alberta on March 12 to 19, 2011.
More information about the mini-tours to follow.