The beginning of February marks the halfway point in the ski season and brings with it one of the most anticipated events in Eastern Canada: The Eastern Canadian Championships! One of the major competitions of the season for team XC Ottawa, this upcoming weekend of racing includes racers from Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, PEI and Newfoundland and Labrador.
This year the event will be held February 11-13, hosted by Skinouk and held at the Nakkertok ski club in Cantley Quebec. Keeping with this year's "new theme" of 3-day mini tour races, Easterns will consist of three races held over the period of three days. Friday will be a 3km prologue skate race, Saturday a skate sprint and Sunday a handicapped start long distance classic race. There will be podiums for each individual race as well as the overall winners of the weekend.
XC Ottawa is looking forward to having everyone on their winter race team attending Eastern Canadians this upcoming weekend. Having previewed the prologue course last week, it looks to be a tough but exciting event. All races include more than a few steep climbs and panic-inducing descents, with racers making numerous appearances within site of the stadium throughout each race.
Each year, Easterns offers the unique opportunity for many XC Ottawa members to race at home. Going home after each race and sleeping in our own beds is definitely a luxury for such an important ski race! As well, many family members and friends will be there cheering all of us on, which definitely adds some positivity to the race atmosphere.
The venue, Nakkertok South, is very spectator friendly with two heated barns and bio-friendly bathrooms. Many ski and wax reps will be attending showing off new products. Last but not least, the host, Skinouk ski club will be running a great waffle-fundraiser to help their team pay for Nationals.
All information concerning race information can be found at http://club.skinouk.ca/ski-de-fond/championnat-de-l-est-1 and all results will be posted on www.zone4.ca.
So come on out and watch some of Canadaís top racers battle it out this weekend, it promises to be epic!