Snowboard Yukon has sent out the call for any boarders who want to try out for the territory’s 2019 Canada Winter Games team.
Interested athletes must have their written application in no later than June 1.
The selection criteria outlined in the 12-page document sent out by Snowboard Yukon last week describes the level of commitment and training requirements expected from those looking to earn a spot on the team.
Snowboard Yukon is looking for two female boarders and two male boarders aged 13 to 17 to compete in the slopestyle event, as well as two females and two males aged 15 to 19 to compete in the snowboardcross event.
“We want to see a level of commitment,” Snowboard Yukon head coach Robert Faulds said in an interview this week from Whistler, B.C. “We have athletes now who are very committed to the program, who do not miss training.
“So it is really a level of commitment we are looking for, and how serious they are about the program and also having fun.”
Faulds was in Whistler this week completing the competition development course he requires to be a qualified snowboard coach at the Winter Games, which begin next February in Red Deer and Kananaskis, Alberta.
“It’s essentially a level three for snowboarding,” he said, adding a lot of the course was spent boarding on the mountain.
The final selection camp will be held in Whistler from Dec. 19 to 23.
“We do that camp every year and it is a really good camp for us to really assess where everybody is at.”
Travel subsidies, according the selection criteria, will be available to attend the December selection camp.
Faulds noted there’s also a regular boarding camp put on every year at Whistler in July.
Attending the camp is not mandatory but is recommended for athletes interested in trying out for the team, though no subsidy is available, he said.
Snowboard Yukon is hosting its one-day kick-off camp June 16.
Interested boarders will receive information about the Canada Winter Games, as well as set individual goals with the coaches and receive baseline fitness testing from a professional trainer. They’ll also be given information on nutrition and planning, and will be provided guidance on stretching and recovery.
Faulds explained maintaining a summer training program does not have to be snowboard specific. Rather, it’s more about keeping fitness levels up, he said.
The head coach said there are a number of boarders who mountain bike during the summer and that’s just fine.
The Canada Winter Games will be held in Red Deer from Feb. 14 to March 3, with the exception of the alpine and freestyle skiing and snowboarding. Snowboarding and freestyle skiing are being held at the Canada Olympic Park in Calgary, and alpine skiing is being held in Kananaskis, Alta.
Snowboarding is scheduled for the second week, beginning Feb. 23.
Trevor Twardochleb, Team Yukon’s chef de mission, said Thursday the territory is expecting to send 215 athletes, coaches and individual team chefs over the two weeks.
Among the 215 athletes are two Special Olympic figure skaters.
Twardochleb said figure skating is the only sport with a category for Special Olympic Athletes.
Yukon athletes will compete in 18 different sports – seven the first week and 11 the second.
Individual sport disciplines are in various stages of preparation for the Games, he said.
Twardochleb said the individual sport bodies know their athletes, and they know the cycle of the Winter Games so they generally have a good idea of what their teams are going to look like.
The 2019 Canada Winter Games will be the largest multi-sport and cultural event Alberta has hosted since the 1988 Winter Olympics, and the largest event ever hosted by the City of Red Deer.