ACADEMY TRAINING
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Three Academy Athletes in Finals of Canmore NorAm Sprint #2 Dec 20th, 2009
Kate and Heid in the B-final.
Photo by Gord Jewett
Kate and Heid in the B-final.

It was another strong sprint day for the Alberta World Cup Academy, and while no athletes landed on the podium in open competition Madeleine Williams and Rhonda Jewett fell just short finishing in 4th and 5th, while Jess Cockney had a breakthrough performance to make the men's final and finish in 6th after a broken pole.

Jess, in his first year as a senior, qualified in 6th position and was dominant through the rounds, easily advancing through his quarter-final and winning his semi-final heat. Jess was in tough with a very deep final, and after a strong start he ran into bad luck, crashing in the first corner and breaking a pole. He chased valiantly but had to settle for 6th on a day where he clearly had the speed to fight for the win.

The team's women were nearly as strong as yesterday, placing four in the top twelve. Rhonda experienced some bad luck in her semi final when an American skier fell in front of her and held her up for several seconds in the first corner. After getting untangled it looked like she was out of the race to advance, but an unbelievable finishing sprint saw her come from 6th to 3rd and move into the A-final. Unfortunately the extra energy cost her ten minutes later in the final as she skied to 5th, just behind Madeleine. For the second day in a row Kate Brennan dominated the B-final to finish 7th, with Heidi Widmer 12th after being relegated from 8th due to the fall of another skier in her heat.

Lucas Jungmann brought home the win for the team in the junior men's race, while Annika Hicks was 4th in the junior women's sprint. Other results included Alysson Marshall in 14th, Emily Nishikawa in 17th, Marlis Kromm in 20th (racing up from junior), Joey Burton in 31st (also racing up from junior) and Terrell Stephen in 42nd.

On the other side of the country Bob Thompson was again in action at the Ontario Cup in Thunder Bay. Bob won junior for the second day in a row and finished 3rd again in the open men's category of the 8.4km classic race.

Complete NorAm results are available at www.zone4.ca.

Ontario Cup results are available here.

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