Olympians ski at Sovereign

Elite cross-country skiers will be taking part in key races at Sovereign Lake Nordic Centre this weekend in the lead up to next February's Olympic Games.

Over 550 elite cross-country skiers, including past Olympians, their support staff and families are expected to descend on Vernon for the Haywood NorAm & Sprints/USSA Supertour, the official race series for Cross Country Canada and the Unites States Ski and Snowboard Association.

These races will partially serve as a qualifier for athletes hoping to get to the biggest games in the world.

“We [Sovereign Lake] are lucky to play a critical role in athlete development in both Canada and the U.S., serving as a qualifier for the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea,” said Troy Hudson, Sovereign Lake's general manager. “Sovereign Lake is a favourite amongst skiers because of its reliable early season snow and high-altitude training as well as nearby accommodation and amenities at SilverStar Mountain Resort.”

Saturday will see the skiers go head-to-head in a classic technique sprint, while Sunday will be a skate technique distance race.

The weekend races will see U.S. Olympians such as Kris Freeman, Brian Gregg and Caitlin Gregg competing, as well as many other competitors from the Canadian and U.S. national ski teams. Vernon athletes include junior national ski team member, Hannah Mehain.

This weekend marks the first stop in the NorAm series and the second stop in the SuperTour series.

Recreational skiers are advised that many trails at Sovereign Lake will remain unaffected by the races this weekend.

For details on the which trails will be affected and the weekend’s events, call the lodge at (250) 558-3036 or go online.

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