An XCOttawa contingent of Karl, Megan, Sheila, Katie, Andre, and Ingrid travelled to Mont St Anne last weekend, to participate in the Quebec cup used for selecting the Quebec team for the Canada Winter Games. Held at the same location as the 2007 nationals, the races were on excellent trails, with a great amount of early season snow.
The first day started off with a mass start classic race, with the women doing 7.5km, and the men doing 10km. The women’s race was won by 14 year old Anne-Marie Comeau. Sheila fought to a photo finish between her and Nakkertok’s Michelle Workun-Hill and Alana Thomas, and ended up coming 3rd. Megan skied to a 7th place finish. Ingrid and Katie both suffered falls during the race, and finished 28th and 33rd respectively. The men’s race started a few minutes early, while Karl was just putting on his skis in the start area. After making his way through all the racers, Karl ended up losing a photo finish to Andre, putting them in 16th and 17th place. The race was won by Raphael Couturier, with Nakkertok’s Steffan Lloyd and Patrick Stewart-Jones taking 2nd and 3rd. After a hard day of racing most of the team was able to relax, but Andre had to write an engineering exam under John’s watchful eye.
The next day was a 1.25km skate sprint on a tough course with lots of climbing, and several tricky corners. Andre proved the benefits of writing exams as race prep, by qualifying in 3rd. Karl qualified in 11th. Sheila qualified in 7th, Megan 9th, Ingrid 25th, and Katie 29th. In the quarter finals, Megan was unable to advance after a fall close to the finish line put her 4th in her heat. Ingrid and Katie also did not get past the quarterfinals, but Sheila had an excellent day and easily won the B final to finish in 7th. Karl made it all the way to the A final, where he finished 4th, while Andre had a tough afternoon that put him into 12th overall.
Monday was the final day of racing, with individual start 10/15km skate. Karl fought his way onto the podium with a 3rd place finish, while Andre finished 11th. Sheila had another excellent day, placing 2nd in open women. Megan ended up in 5th and only 1 second off 4th. Ingrid and Katie were 26th and 37th.
After a long weekend of hard racing, the team packed up our stuff and endured the long drive back to Ottawa. The team would like to send a big thank you to John and Anna for waxing our incredibly fast skis, and for their loud cheering on the course. Also, thanks to all the volunteers and organisers for all their effort in holding such a high quality race.