The snow has melted, but the memories are still flying down the slopes of local athletes. The Lightning Creek Ski Club (LCSC) held their annual awards event, now that all the aspiring alpine stars have had a rest, and there was plenty to celebrate.
Before the individual awards were handed out, the club got to cheer for an association victory. LCSC president Falko Kadenbach explained the game-changing development for the Quesnel ski group.
“As we prepare to host the BC Winter Games next season we are thrilled to announce our successful grant application from the Northern Development Initiative Trust Tourism & Infrastructure Program that will allow us to build and expand some of the fixed venue infrastructure at Troll Mount Resort,” he said. “This would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication from our volunteer board of directors and support from the Cariboo Regional District, Telus, West Fraser, Nik Zoricic Foundation and all our member volunteers who will bring the plan to reality this summer.”
Two of the local ski racers were applauded by the provincial organization, BC Alpine.
“BC Alpine awards are race points-based awards,” said Kadenbach. “This year Lightning Creek Ski Club had two U12 racers who were awarded the annual U12 awards.”
One of them came from his own household, as Markus Kadenbach picked up the North Zone’s male U12 athlete of the year while Fruszina Peter won the North Zone’s female U12 athlete of the year.
At the club level, coaches have a point system by which the LCSC’s internal awards are tallied. This year the alpine athlete of the year goes to Livia Seabourn, the U12 male racer of the year was Zeyu Zhao, the U12 female racer of the year was Bee Savard, the club’s rookie of the year was Colt Goyer.
There was one additional and special award presented at the event. The Abby Award Foundation enables 92 participating ski clubs across Canada to each honour one of their U10 members for things that reflect the core values of skiing and athletics in general. LCSC is proud to be an Abby club, in honour of Abrielle Wunsch, an enthusiastic racer who passed away in 2015 at the age of nine.
“The Abby Award is a snowflake medallion which is presented to a U10 level ski racer in each participating club across Canada,” said a statement from the Abby Award Foundation. “This award is for the athletes who show up in the morning with a smile on their faces. They try their best and give 110 per cent, do what the coach asks, never complains, and cheers on their teammates. It is meant for athletes who are there because they want to have fun and they truly love the sport of skiing.” This year, in Quesnel, that special personality belongs to Zeyi Zhao.
Kadenbach also drew attention to some late-season accomplishments for Lightning Creek members. Kinsay Boudreau took third place at U14 Provincials in Revelstoke; Maggie Beaudoin qualified and participated at the U16 Whistler Cup event (380 skiers from more than 20 countries); Fruzi Peter placed 5th overall in B.C. for the U12 division at the Nancy Greene Festival held at Sunpeaks.
“One of the club’s alpine coaches, Grace Klapatiuk, completed her Development Level Coaching course to advance her coaching education and career,” Kadenbach said, adding that some of the club’s most exciting accomplishments are for the overall growth of the sport, not just today’s athletes. “Everyone had a great season, skied hard and did their best. Congrats to all athletes.”