Fresh snow on the mountains brings fresh hopes for several young Squamish skiers.
The racing season officially kicks off for skiers aged 12 to 16 on Dec. 22 and 23 in Whistler, with a number of locals ready to take on some of the provinceís best.
B.C. Alpine has moved away from classifying competitors in K1, K2, etc. divisions and is now using the system used in soccer in which athletes are categorized as U16, U14, U12, etc.
The U14 locals include Kasper Woolley, Kai Labrenz and Jack Cormac, while the U12ís consist of Maja Woolley, Nathan Romanan, Freya Jumbonville and Gemma Bexton.
Last year was a breakout year for Kasper Woolley, who picked up gold medals for his age group in the 2012 B.C. Winter Games and also excelled at a number of competitions throughout the province.
Another young skier to watch out for is U16 skier Mikayla Martin. Last year saw Martin win the Parsons Cup in Whistler and win gold at a number of events, but injury issues will cause her to miss the early part of the season.
Martin, who was named The Chiefís Readerís Choice favourite youth female athlete in November, lacerated her spleen in a bike race in July and then sprained her MCL in a skiing training camp in Colorado earlier this fall. Martinís bad luck continued when, while at the camp, she injured her knee during a soccer game and left the camp with a fractured femur.
According to her father James Martin, Mikayla is about 10 weeks behind her fellow competitors as far as training goes and hasnít set foot on the snow yet. She hopes to return to racing in January and compete again provincially in February.
For more information on the upcoming ski season, visit www.bcalpine.com.