Canadians Westerns Rundown: Skate Sprints

Gerry FursethFebruary 8, 2019
Elizabeth Elliot leads Benia Pfeiffer and Paige Latta in the semi-final at Westerns (Photo: Peggy Hung)
Elizabeth Elliot leads Benita Peiffer and Paige Latta up the first climb in the semi-final at Westerns (Photo: Peggy Hung)

Canadian Western Championships started off Friday with free technique sprints on the Telemark trails near Kelowna, B.C.

The sun was out for the qualification round, followed by cloud, and light snow as the day progressed with the temperature hovering at -10C. A major road closure combined with icy morning highways and a large number of accidents blocking roads caused some athletes and volunteers to miss the qualification round, resulting in only 312 athletes on the start line. About 500 athletes are expected to race Saturday.

Katie Weaver (RMR) won the 1.3km qualifier in 3:06.02 and her first two heats before Benita Peiffer (Whistler) pipped her at the line to win the A final by 0.10 seconds in 3:02.79. Second place qualifier Elizabeth Elliot (AWCA) took the bronze, 2.77 seconds back.

Julien Locke blew the A final apart in Telemark. (Photo: Peggy Hung)
Julien Locke blew the A final apart in Telemark. (Photo: Peggy Hung)

The men raced the same course, with Julien Locke (CNST) steamrolling the field, qualifying first in 2:27.67 before winning all three heats alone. In the A final, Locke clocked 2:28.23, 3.42 seconds ahead of the three chasers. Junior Remi Drolet (Black Jack) stretched ahead of local Gareth Williams (CNST) by 0.03 seconds with Larkin Wasmuth (CRTG) 4th, 0.53 seconds behind Drolet.

Results: qualification, heats, full weekend and live timing

Racing continues with classic mass starts on Saturday and relays on Sunday.

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Gerry Furseth

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