Oliemans points skis towards Olympics

Jason Oliemans hopes to make the national ski-cross team and eventually the Olympics.

If there’s a different way to go down the hill, skiers seem to find it.

First there was the simple roll yourself up into a ball and roll down the hill. Next there was the simple sit on a branch and slide down. Progress that up to the sled, the toboggan, and then some bright light came up with the idea of skis.

Long boards strapped to feet and then straight down the hill. Then we had flags to go around in a kind of obstacle course. And then it was flippy doodles, somersaults and who knows what else to make it interesting.

A relatively recent development is that of ski-cross. A ski-cross course consists of natural features as well as high jumps, rollers and banked turns.

Perhaps the most unique feature is that the races are not just solo timed runs but also includes a series of four skier races after time trials to select the fastest skiers. Groups of four skiers start at the same time and try to eliminate each other.

We do not yet have a dedicated ski-cross run here at Hudson Bay Mountain. That lack has led local ski-cross enthusiast Jason Oliemans to move to Calgary where he is attempting to hone his skills to the point where he hopes he can join the World Cup circuit with the Canadian team. He currently competes on the North America Cup circuit.

“I started off with regular skiing and eventually tried ski-cross and I really liked it,” said Oliemans, currently home for the holiday break.

“There was supposed to be an event in Calgary in mid-December but it got cancelled. This winter I am living and training in Calgary,” he said.

Since British Columbia does not have a ski-cross team, he has become a member of the Alberta ski-cross team. Ski-cross has been in the X-Games for quite some time but since 2004 has become part of the Freestyle World Cup series and made it’s first appearance in the Olympics in 2010.

“In either four years or eight years I would like to make the Olympic team,” he said.

Currently he is busy recovering from an injury to his heel.

“I’m hoping by the end of the holidays that I’ll be back skiing,” he said.

Oliemans has high goals for the future.

“Hopefully if things go well this year, I can move up from the Alberta team to the national team which is also based out of Calgary,” he said.

He said that the two teams work closely together and often train in the same place.

Oliemans described the skis involved in ski-cross as similar to those used in giant slalom

“They are different in that they are from those used in regular skiing. Compared to those skis used in regular downhill skiing, they tend to be longer for greater speed and skinnier for more control.

Oliemans feels that the Canadian ski-cross team is one of the best teams in the world, if not the absolute best.

“We’ll be in medal contention in both the girls and the guys,” he said.

He said that while he might not be able to race in World Cup events that he may be able to attend, he would probably get a chance to ski the course as part of an effort the check the timing equipment that is used on the course.

sports@interior-news.com

Just Posted

Smithers rail Teamsters settle in for strike

Ottawa urges CN and union to continue talks as 3,200 workers hit the picket lines

Houston homicide suspect remanded in custody

A Houston man accused of the second degree murder of Elija Dumont… Continue reading

Bulkley Valley Credit Union named Business of the Year

Awards gala sets new attendance record

Hazelton aces their way to gold at Grade 8 girls volleyball zones

Smithers schools grab silver and bronze at Prince Rupert Middle School tournament

William Griffin arrested in Houston homicide

RCMP have now arrested William Griffin, the man wanted in connection to… Continue reading

Bye bye Bei Bei: Giant panda born in U.S. zoo heads to China

Panda heads back to China as part of cooperative breeding program

Members of little people community applaud change to drop ‘midget’ term

‘It’s not about sensitivity,’ says Allan Redford, the president of the Little People of Canada

Little progress in preventing sudden infant deaths since last report: BC Coroner

Coroners panel studied 141 sleep-related sudden infant deaths between 2013 and 2018

B.C.’s ‘Dr. Frankenstein of guns’ back in jail yet again for trafficking in Glock parts

Bradley Michael Friesen has parole revoked for allegedly importing gun parts yet again

B.C. woman suing after laser hair removal leaves her with ‘severe’ burns, scarring

Nadeau felt ‘far more pain’ than usual during the treatment

$2.9 million judgment in B.C. blueberry farm sabotage lawsuit

The new owners saw most of their farm ruined just as they took possession

B.C. to more than double sales tax on vaping products

Tax up from 7 to 20 per cent, tobacco tax up two cents

29 B.C. students in Hong Kong amid tense protests, university siege

Eight UVic and 21 UBC students still in Hong Kong

‘Midget’ no more: Sweeping division name changes coming to minor hockey in Canada

Alpha-numeric division names will be used for the 2020-2021 season and beyond

Most Read