Nickel Plate junior cross country racing team earns strong results
Treating the 22nd annual Nickel Plate Classic Loppett as a training run may have been a smart approach for the Nickel Plate junior race team on Feb. 9.
Walker Singleton, 13, moved up to the 16 and over category and finished first among 16 competitors in the 15-kilometre distance. Elena Selles placed third after finishing the 7.5-km distance in the 14- to 17-year-old category.
"I felt pretty good about myself," said Selles, 13. "I left everything out on the trail. I knew that my competitors would be older. I didn't want to do the 3-km too fast."
Selles said she was pretty surprised with her result as she didn't think she would finish on the podium.
Mathew Broder came in fourth out of 16 in the 3-km distance for 13 and under category. Theo Morrison and Sol Jacques moved up to the 14 to 17 age category 7.5 km, placing sixth and seventh respectively. Allie Hayman did not finish as she wasn't feeling well enough in the conditions.
Nickel Plate coach Jerome Jang recommended his skiers go 70 per cent of race pace for a quarter of the race, 80 per cent for another quarter then 90 per cent for another quarter and go race pace for the last quarter to leave plenty in their tank. "The athletes followed the race plan and I was extremely pleased with their discipline in keeping to the right pace (as all of them were skiing two or three times the distance that they would normally ski at a B.C. Cup or other higher level event)," said Jang. "This showed that their training is coming along the right track and they should be peaking at the right time for the final races of the season in March."
Last weekend, Justin Odian was the lone member from the club to compete in the Okanagan Cup 2 in Kamloops. Odian was second in the midget boys 3.5-km distance. Jang said Odian didn't perform as well as he could have as he was slipping on the hills as he missed the grip wax. Odian finished four minutes behind the leader. The third race is in Vernon on March 10.