Sunshine Village Ski & Snowboard Resort

Sunshine Village Ski & Snowboard Resort

June 29, 2011 05:00 ET

Nordic Skiers Visiting Sunshine

BANFF, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - June 29, 2011) - Some of Canada's Nordic skiers have been using Sunshine Village Ski & Snowboard Resort as a training camp in the past two weeks. And, to coach John Jaques, the reason is simple.

"It's the snow at this time of year," he says.

Massive accumulations during Sunshine's record snow year are lingering on into July, allowing the skiers to train at altitude on freshly groomed runs that freeze overnight. With early morning starts, the 30-40 skiers who make the daily trek in this alpine environment find they can get in a solid three or four hours of hard work before their bodies give out and the snow softens up.

"Our athletes are really cooked," laughs Jaques. "They've had lots of great volume and lots of great skiing."

Sunshine's use as a training ground has a long and storied history. But it was Jaques, head coach of the Rocky Mountain Racers, who decided the team needed an alternative to the Haig Glacier training site (in Kananaskis Country) and placed the phone call to see if the team could use Sunshine.

"Sunshine is a unique place," he says, noting Sunshine's policy of providing free skiing during the winter to members of the national ski team. "They've been supporting national teams for years."

Para-Nordic coach Robin McKeever agreed the snow is key, but also "The altitude is what we're looking for."

"I can't get our sit-skiers on the Haig Glacier anyway. (If a storm arises), the only way in and out is by helicopter."

Sunshine Village provides organizational support, including help from Al Matheson, the mountain operations manager who oversees the resort's ski patrol. The Rocky Mountain Racers is bringing up members of the cross-country, biathlon and Para-Nordic teams. The club also has several members of both junior and senior Canadian national ski teams.

John Scurfield, vice-president of Sunshine Village located in historic Banff National Park, added: "These athletes give Canada so much pride, it is nice that Sunshine Village can give back to them."

High-resolution images are available by request

Contact Information

  • Sunshine Village Ski and Snowboard Resort
    Doug Firby
    Associate Director, Communications, Media and Marketing
    Office: 403-705-4010
    Mobile: 403-671-1000
    doug.firby@skibanff.com

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