Bulkley Valley athletes impress at B.C. Games

Kaitlyn Peterson leads impressive crew with bronze in snowboard cross.

Downhill skiers prepare for competition at Sun Peaks during the recent B.C. Games.                                 Contributed photo

Downhill skiers prepare for competition at Sun Peaks during the recent B.C. Games. Contributed photo

It was an exciting trip to the BC Games for a group of Smithers athletes, and they showed they were not mere participants as they performed well and came home with excellent results.

The top result from the locals was a bronze medal in the snowboard cross event from Kaitlyn Peterson.

Snowboard was one of the group’s top disciplines as they also had a fifth from Brianna Belisle and a sixth from another Northwest region girl. The lone Northwest region boy finished in fourth.

Snowboard coach Warren Pali said there were three days on the hill, which included one day of training time and two days of competing.

“It shows we’re doing something right,” he said. “We are right at the top of the pack.”

Pali was pleased with the results, especially since they had not been to the Sun Peaks track before so the new venue was “a lot a of fun.”

There were around 1,200 athletes in the Games supported by 1,800 volunteers.

“It’s very important for the kids. It’s their Olympics. Its definitely a good experience for them as it’s the next step for them,” said Pali.

While there was no competition on the final day, there was a “podium search” in which various measurements and abilities that might indicate potential were conducted to see where sport-specific athletes might fit into the larger group of athletes in B.C.

“Their physical testing and results were unbelievable,” he said in reference to the snowboard athletes.

The next club event will be in mid-March and will be the last one of the season for them.

Pali felt that this year started with great snow but, “through the Christmas holidays, which is the time we spend building track on our mountain, we did not have much snow so we were at a disadvantage not having new snow to build the track but we still had great results. We try to make up that environment in different ways.”

“We have great support from our club and we have great coaches. Our parents are dedicated. It’s not easy to send your kids all over the province but they make the sacrifices and it is nice to see,” he said. “We were one of only two regions that had to fly into the Games. It was a nice switch from the long drives we usually have,” he said.

On another side of the slope, the downhill skiers may not have had as high finishes but their coach was more than satisfied with the way they competed. Dick Eastmure said they were placing around the middle of the pack and he was pleased with the way they finished. He said the girls were young and in some cases were giving up a lot on the difference in size that normal growth could bring.

“Every race we’ve gone to this year they just keep getting better. I see the improvement bigtime.

“The Games is a place where they meet kids from a lot of other teams. They made a lot of friends and the whole experience was a lot of fun for them,” he said.

“Probably our top skier was Bridie (Hikisch). She was just outside the top 30 in the downhill and also in the GS (grand slalom). They’re all improving, all the kids seem to do that every time,” he said.

He was in agreement with Pali as to the value of the experience of the BC Games.

“They make a lot of friends and it’s a chance to see other sports. The whole three-day experience is quite a bit different than just going to a standard race. It’s a whole lot more,” he said.

Other local athletes had similar good results. Cross-country skiers Gregory Baxter and Connor Murphy were sixth and seventh in the 500-metre sprint and fifth and seventh in the 5 km race.

In gymnastics, Ava Morrison had the highest placing in an individual event for the Northwest squad with a ninth in the vault.

In curling results posted by the rink of Oliver Kildaw, Duncan Kildaw, Brett Pierce and Kris McLean were unavailable at press time.

sports @interior-news.com

B.C. Winter Games

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


Bulkley Valley athletes impress at B.C. Games

Bulkley Valley athletes impress at B.C. Games

Just Posted

Volunteer Robbie McKnight works the screening table at the Coast Mountain College COVID-19 vaccination clinic in Smithers. (Deb Meissner photo)
Smithers clinic expands vaccine eligibility to ages 60+

Community members born in 1961 or earlier can now call for an appointment at 1-844-255-7555

Styrofoam burning at the Woodmere Tree Nursery in Telka created billowing black smoke over Tyhee Lake and resulted in air quality advisory for Bulkley Valley. (Contributed photo)
VIDEO: Telkwa styrofoam fire air quality advisory lifted

A woodpile fire at Woodmere Tree Nursery spread to styrofoam blocks causing air quality concerns

Restaurant patrons enjoy the weather on a patio in Vancouver, B.C., Monday, April 5, 2021. The province has suspended indoor dining at restaurants and pubs until at least April 19 in B.C. due to a spike in COVID-19 numbers. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. sets new COVID-19 daily record with 1,293 cases Thursday

New order allows workplace closures when infections found

The new 3,500 hectare conservancy in Tahltan territory is located next to Mount Edziza Provincial Park. (BC Parks Photo)
New conservancy protects sacred Tahltan land near Mount Edziza Provincial Park

Project is a collaboration between Skeena Resources, conservation groups and the TCG

The Smithers Local Health Area reported just six new cases of COVID-19 for the week of March 21 - 27. (BC CDC graphic)
Weekly COVID cases decline in Smithers and Northwest

Smithers community members born in 1951 or before (70 years old) now eligible for vaccination

People take part in an anti-curfew protest in Montreal on Sunday April 11, 2021. Hundreds of people gathered in Old Montreal tonight in defiance of a new 8 p.m. curfew. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Giuseppe Valiante
VIDEO: Hundreds defy Montreal’s 8 p.m. curfew in violent, destructive protest

Quebec reported 1,535 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday, as well as five additional deaths linked to the virus

People walk past the Olympic rings in Whistler, B.C., Friday, May 15, 2020. Whistler which is a travel destination for tourists around the world is seeing the effects of travel bans due to COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Adults living, working in Whistler, B.C., eligible for COVID-19 vaccine on Monday

The move comes as the province deals with a rush of COVID-19 and variant cases in the community

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
UPDATE: RCMP investigating after child, 6, dies at motel in Duncan, B.C.

The BC Coroners Service is conducting its own investigation into the circumstances around the child’s death

RCMP display some of the fish seized from three suspects who pleaded guilty to violating the Fisheries Act in 2019, in this undated handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - RCMP
3 banned from fishing, holding licences after overfishing violations near Vancouver Island

Mounties seized the group’s 30-foot fishing vessel and all equipment on board at the time

B.C. Premier John Horgan responds to questions during a postelection news conference in Vancouver, on Sunday, October 25, 2020. British Columbia’s opposition Liberals and Greens acknowledge the COVID-19 pandemic has presented huge challenges for Horgan’s government, but they say Monday’s throne speech must outline a coherent plan for the province’s economic, health, social and environmental future. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Horgan’s NDP to bring in throne speech in B.C., Opposition wants coherent plan

Farnworth said the budget will include details of government investment in communities and infrastructure

Most Read