Osborne-Paradis, Brydon Lead 2010 Alpine Team Nomination

Nineteen-member ski team focused on contributing to Canada’s Olympic medal tally

Manuel Osborne-Paradis (Vancouver, BC) and Emily Brydon (Fernie, BC), both multiple World Cup medalists this season, lead a list of 19 ski racers intently focused on contributing to Canada’s medal totals during the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, Alpine Canada Alpin (ACA) announced today.

ACA also nominated FIS Alpine World Ski Championships medalists Michael Janyk (Whistler, BC) and Jan Hudec (Calgary, AB) as well as World Cup winners Erik Guay (Mont-Tremblant, QC) and Britt Janyk (Whistler, BC) to the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) to be part of the team that will compete for Olympic medals in February.

“To be able to ski on a national team and represent your country on the World Cup circuit is always an honour but qualifying for the Winter Olympics is another ball game. It means you are one of the top four athletes in your country in that specific event,” said Osborne-Paradis, an Olympian in 2006, where he finished 13th in the downhill.

There are a total of seven skiers with Olympic Winter Games experience, including Guay who finished fourth in the super-G in 2006 in Turin, ITA.

“The Olympic Games are a very special experience. To be able to compete, representing my country with athletes from all the different sports, is going to be a very unique experience, especially with the Games in Canada,” said Osborne-Paradis.

“As we near the Games, just a few weeks away now, you can feel the excitement building,” said Britt Janyk, who will be participating in her first Olympics. “This is something that obviously I have been dreaming about for a long time. I grew up in Whistler dreaming about competing in an Olympic Games, and for my dream to be coming true in Whistler is going to be really special.”

In the past four year cycle, Canadian ski racers have achieved three FIS Alpine World Ski Championship medals, eight World Cup wins from six different skiers and 34 World Cup podium results.

“We have a strong field of medal contenders and some young athletes competing in their first Olympic Games, trying to get valuable experience,” said ACA Chief Athletics Officer Max Gartner.

“There is always plenty of competition in alpine ski racing but, on the men’s speed side particularly, I think we are going to the Games with one of the strongest entries. On the women’s side, with Emily having two World Cup podiums this season we have seen that we are in the game there as well,” Gartner said. “The men’s tech team, which has been lead the last couple seasons by Michael Janyk, is also really finding its potential and coming into the Olympic Games with some strong performances from a number of guys.”

Of the 12 racers who will be at their first Olympic Games, Marie-Michèle Gagnon (Lac-Etchemin, QC) is an overall Coupe Nor-Am Cup champion in 2009. Anna Goodman (Pointe-Claire, QC) will be attempting to return to action after suffering an ACL tear in her right knee earlier this month. Nineteen-year-old Erin Mielzynski (Guelph, ON), a member of the national development team, is the youngest team member to be nominated.

“It’s normally the second Olympic Games where an athlete has their best performance. We will take the opportunity to expose some younger athletes into the Olympic environment so that they know what to expect the next time around,” said Gartner.

It is expected that Canada will have representation in each alpine event during the Olympic Winter Games in 2010.

Julien Cousineau – Lachute, QC (Mont-Tremblant)
Robbie Dixon – Whistler, BC (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
Jeffrey Frisch – Mont-Tremblant, QC (Mont Tremblant)
Erik Guay – Mont-Tremblant, QC (Mont-Tremblant)*
Louis-Pierre Hélie – Berthierville, QC (Mont-Ste-Anne)
Jan Hudec – Calgary, AB (Banff Alpine Racers)
Michael Janyk – Whistler, BC (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)*
Tyler Nella – Toronto, ON (Georgian Peaks)
Manuel Osborne-Paradis – Vancouver, BC (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)*
Ryan Semple – Montréal, QC / Mont-Tremblant, QC (Mont-Tremblant)*
Brad Spence – Calgary, AB (NATC – Team Panorama)
Trevor White – Calgary, AB (NATC – Fortress Alpine Ski Team)

Brigitte Acton – Mont-Tremblant, QC (Mont-Tremblant)*
Emily Brydon – Fernie, BC (Fernie Snow Valley Racers)*
Marie-Michèle Gagnon – Lac-Etchemin, QC (Mont Orignal)
Anna Goodman – Pointe-Claire, QC (Mont-Tremblant)
Britt Janyk – Whistler, BC (Whistler Mountain Ski Club)
Erin Mielzynski – Guelph, ON (Georgian Peaks Ski Club)
Shona Rubens – Canmore, AB (Lake Louise / Sunshine Ski Club)*

(* = Previous Olympian)

Georgia Simmerling (West Vancouver, BC), Marie-Pier Préfontaine (Saint-Sauveur, QC) and Patrick Biggs (Orleans, ON) have been added by Alpine Canada Alpin (ACA) to the nomination to Canada’s Alpine team during the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver / Whistler, BC.

The addition of these three athletes brings ACA’s nomination to 22 athletes, the maximum allocation allowed. The three additional spots were officially made available by the International Ski Federation (FIS) earlier today.