Hamish Woods and Skyler Recknell cross the finish line in fine reverse style at the Bulkley Valley Open

Hamish Woods and Skyler Recknell cross the finish line in fine reverse style at the Bulkley Valley Open

BV Open puts skiers in reverse

The Bulkley Valley Nordic Center held its annual BV Open this weekend which looked a little backwards. Literally.

The Bulkley Valley Nordic Center held its annual BV Open this weekend which looked a little backwards. Literally.

Usually the BV Open is a straight away race, however, this year things were different promoting a reverse-pursuit style race. Where racers ski they first lap normally, going forward but once they cross the line the clock starts to go backward and so did a couple racers. The idea being that you try to cross the line before your time runs out, effectively raising a better time than your first lap.

But two competitors took the idea literally and raced their second lap with the rear leading the way. Hamish Woods and Skyler Recknell both finished the race facing backwards and said for that reason alone made it one of the hardest races they have ever been in.

“It’s called a reverse-pursuit,” said Woods. “Because you start in opposite order so since it was reverse we thought we should ski it in reverse. It was really hard. But very fun at the same time.”

This year the BV Nordic Center has been flooded with skiers all season and memberships have surpassed 700. Races like the BV Open add not only a competitive aspect to a fun race but brings out skiers of all ages and skill levels.

“This is a reverse-pursuit and it’s a combination between a timed race for trophies but also a fun race,” said Steve Osbourn, Chief of Competition for BV Cross-Country Ski Club.  Skyler and Hamish did it all backwards, 5 kilometres skiing backwards, it’s pretty wild.

In the boys/girls Atom division Connor Murphy took first place with a time of 2:54.8, followed by Casey Lesawich in second and Ivan Hanchard in third.

In the Peewee division Mia Rechnell landed herself in first place as well as Jesse Smids. Aidan Murphy finished second with a time 2:17.0 followed by Gabriel Vandenberg from Snow Valley Nordics. Claire Lesawich made it to a first place win in the Peewee Girls in the 0.8 kilometer race, followed by Rachel Cuell in second and Haley Hanchard in third. In the 5km Midget boys division Hamish Woods finished in first, followed by his backward skiing partner Skyler Recknell in second. In the juvenile girls 5km race Kate Woods captured first with Ria Vandenberg in second. The junior girls division saw Frida Idoff and Johanna Vandenberg cross the line in first and second respectively.In the Masters women’s 50-59 category, Irene Ronalds scored first followed by Sybille Haeussler in second. Finally Walter Bucher captured first in the masters mens division with Bill Price and Gordon Skrecky in second and third.

The final ski of the year will take place Mar. 3-4 to finish off another season with the Bulkley Valley Cross Country Marathon.