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Clouds heavy with building snow and a winter-storm warning already in effect cast a second anticipatory shadow over a jittery group of racers gathered on Wednesday for the first Frozen Thunder race of the season at the Canmore Nordic Centre in Canmore, Alberta. At stake for some of the top Canadians participating in the day’s classic sprint was the opportunity to secure the final spot on the men’s World Cup team for the first period...

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It wasn't easy, but the crew at the Canmore Nordic Centre got it done. "We have a slightly smaller loop than we had before because we had so many warm temperatures last February and March," Canadian head coach Justin Wadsworth explained. But the Frozen Thunder classic sprint was held on snow Monday with more than 50 competitors, and Emily Nishikawa and Lenny Valjas emerged as this year's winners.