This winter may have provided challenges to many but some of those challenges have also provided goals and chances to reach those goals.
The B.C. contingent travelling to the Canada Winter Games recently held in Red Deer, Alberta only had one member from the local area but she made the most of what that opportunity provided. Briana Belisle made the team for her snowboard expertise and set the goal of a top 10 finish at the competition.
Such a goal might have seemed a bit high for many in their first major competition, but Belisle was not deterred by what the opposition may have provided and came up big with a seventh in the Giant Slalom and a 10th in the snowboard cross.
Prior to the Canada Games, Belisle was almost an unknown quantity but came up with an impressive win at the Big White competition in 2018. Her biggest competition prior to the Games was a Nor Am competition in Ontario.
Belisle’s mother Wanda was perhaps a bit more impressed by those performances.
“She’s only 15 and she was racing against people a lot older. Some of them were against people on the Canadian and US national teams,” she said.
Belisle said that she had enjoyed the Games races and was excited by the snowboard cross race. While the slalom race is more like a time trial, the snowboard cross is an actual race against other snowboarders. There is no room for error and the slightest mistake means you will be out of the running.
Following the competition in Red Deer, the team members were treated to a bit of a training camp. All the team members were available at one time and took advantage of coaches and resources that are not usually so easily accessible. In addition, the group was able to participate in team building activities which are not often readily available.
Her next big contests will be the provincial and national competitions at the end of March. Both of these will be held at Big White near Kelowna.