2018 Canadian Nationals Weekend Recap: Days 1 and 2

FasterSkierMarch 12, 2018
Patrick Stewart-Jones (l), skiing for his club team Nakkertok, and Scott Hill (r) of Barrie Cross Country (BXC) going head to head in the men’s classic team sprint on Saturday at Canadian Ski Nationals in Thunder Bay, Ontario. Nakkertok won and BXC placed second. (Photo: Doug Stephen)

Canadian Ski Nationals (Thunder Bay, Ontario): Team sprints + 5/10 k classic 

Canada’s 2018 Ski Nationals opened this past weekend at Lappe Nordic in Thunder Bay, Ontario, with classic team sprints on Saturday followed by 5- and 10-kilometer classic interval starts on Sunday.

Nakkertok topped the podium in both the open men’s and women’s team sprints. In the men’s final, Nakkertok’s Dominique Moncion-Groulx and Patrick Stewart-Jones won by 1.95 seconds over Barrie Cross Country (BXC) in 14:50.79. BXC’s Ryan Jackson and Scott Hill teamed up for second place, and Skibec’s Alexis Morin and Antoine Brand raced to third (+2.57).

Katherine Stewart-Jones (22), skiing for her club team Nakkertok, while leading Annika Richardson (Hollyburn Ski Club) and Mathilde Petitjean (r) of C.N.M.S.A. during the women’s classic team sprint at 2018 Canadian Ski Nationals in Thunder Bay, Ontario. (Photo: Doug Stephen)

The Stewart-Jones family was also a big winner on Saturday, with Nakkertok’s Zoë Williams and Katherine Stewart-Jones (Patrick’s sister) racing to first in the women’s final in 13:04.72. They finished 2.37 seconds ahead of Katie Weaver and Annika Richardson of the Hollyburn Ski Club in second place, and Marie Corriveau and Mathilde Petitjean of Club Nordique Mont-Sainte-Anne (C.N.M.S.A.) raced to third (+7.42).

On Day 2 and the first official day of Canadian Ski Nationals, Hill (BXC) took his second-straight win of the weekend, topping the men’s 10 k classic with a time of 26:45.1 for his first senior national title. He finished 7.2 seconds faster than Alexis Dumas, of the Pierre-Harvey National Training Centre (CNEPH) in second, and an early race leader, Knute Johnsgaard of the Canadian World Cup Team, placed third (+12.0)

Johnsgaard clocked the fastest split at the race’s halfway point, while Hill’s 5 k time was almost 10 seconds slower. But over the final 5 k, Hill’s lap time was nearly 22 seconds faster than Johnsgaard’s. Dumas skied a consistent race, with the fourth-fastest first lap and second-fastest second lap.

Knute Johnsgaard (Canadian World Cup Team) racing to third in the men’s 10 k classic on Sunday at Canadian Ski Nationals in Thunder Bay, Ontario. (Photo: Doug Stephen)

Jackson (BXC) finished fourth (+14.7), and Jess Cockney of the Alberta World Cup Academy (AWCA) and Canadian World Cup Team placed fifth (+22.2). Leading the National Team Development Centre (NTDC) Thunder Bay on its home trails was Evan Palmer-Charrette in sixth (+24.8), and Lappe Nordic’s Michael Somppi (AWCA) placed seventh (+29.1). Gareth Williams of Telemark Nordic and the Canadian U25 Team finished eighth (+39.5), American Brian Gregg (CXC/Team Gregg/Loppet Nordic Racing) was ninth (+44.7), and Jack Carlyle (AWCA) 10th (+49.5).

Olivia Bouffard-Nesbitt of Rocky Mountain Racers (RMR) collected her first senior national title with a 13.3-second victory in the women’s 5 k classic. She finished in 15:07.5, ahead of American Caitlin Gregg (CXC/Team Gregg/LNR) in second, while Katherine Stewart-Jones (NTDC Thunder Bay) was the second Canadian and third overall (+17.9).

NTDC Thunder Bay had two in the top four with Alannah Maclean in fourth (+19.8). Annika Hicks (AWCA) followed in fifth (+22.2), Frédérique Vézina (CNEPH) was sixth (+30.8), Sophie Carrier-Laforte (Skinouk) seventh (+33.0), Maya MacIsaac-Jones (RMR/Canadian U25 Team) eighth (+37.4), Laura Leclair (CNEPH) ninth (+58.1), and Williams (Nakkertok) 10th (+1:07.2).

Nationals continue Tuesday with 10/15 k freestyle pursuits, followed by skate sprints on Wednesday and 30/50 k classic mass starts on Saturday.

Audio livestream

Full race schedule



Day 1: Classic team sprint

Day 2: 5/10 k classic


Spectators during the classic team sprint at 2018 Canadian Ski Nationals in Thunder Bay, Ontario. (Photo: Doug Stephen)

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