TELUS Awards of Excellence for Alpine Canada Alpin recognize top performances of the past season
CALGARY, AB –Emily Brydon (Fernie, BC) and para-alpine skier Lauren Woolstencroft (North Vancouver, BC) are being honoured today by Alpine Canada Alpin with the national sport organizations top awards in athletic achievement.
Brydon finished on the podium in a World Cup race in Lake Louise for the first time in her 13-year national team career, placing second and third in downhill races on consecutive days during the Bombardier Lake Louise Winterstart last November.
Woolstencroft became the most decorated female athlete from any country at a single Winter Paralympic Games winning five gold medals last March in Whistler, BC. She also received a resounding 74.9 per cent of the 558 votes cast for Fan’s Choice Athlete of the Year.
"I feel very honored to have won those two awards but the Fan Choice award is definitely the one that I cherish the most. I really appreciate that people who are interested in ski racing in Canada actually took the time to vote for me,” said the 28-year-old Woolstencroft, who announced her retirement from the Canadian Para-Alpine Ski Team shortly after the Games.
“To still be in people's minds after retiring four months ago is a nice surprise and it shows how much the sport of Para-Alpine has evolved over the years. Thank you to everyone who voted," She added.
Viviane Forest (Edmonton AB) was named CPAST Breakthrough Athlete of the Year after winning five medals, including a gold, at the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games. Forest can claim to the rare feat of being both a summer and winter Paralympic gold medalist, having participated as part Canada’s gold medal winning goalball team at the 2000 Games in Sydney and again in 2004 in Athens.
Kelby Halbert (Bradford, ON) became the latest Canadian to podium at the FIS Alpine World Junior Ski Championships, placing third in the combined in France last February and was named the Breakthrough Athlete of the Year.
“Led by the athletes being honoured with 2010 TELUS Awards of Excellence, Canadian skiers just completed the most successful Olympic cycle in our history,” said Alpine Canada Alpin President Max Gartner. “The determination of athletes like Erik, Emily and Lauren serves as an inspiration to our young ski racers of what is possible. And the national award winners are strengthening our sport with their passion, ensuring the safest, fairest and most enjoyable ski races possible occur in Canada.”
“Corporate support also plays a major role in elevating our athletes to podium results each year. I would like to recognize the support of partners like TELUS, who have brought attention to the achievements of our athletes through this awards program for many years,” Gartner said.
Lee Ann Underwood was named Female Master Athlete of the Year.
“TELUS congratulates the 2010 TELUS Awards of Excellence recipients for their well earned but hard won success at home and on the world stage,” said Steve Podborski, TELUS national director of Community Sport and Olympian in Alpine Skiing. “The Alpine and the Para-Alpine Teams have won the hearts of Canadians and TELUS is proud to support our athletes who represent this great country with an unrivaled passion for sport.”
The TELUS Awards of Excellence for Alpine Canada Alpin, which date back to 2002, honour outstanding individuals who excelled during the previous ski racing season. Through the years, more 100 outstanding recipients have been honoured.
The ski racing community in Canada will be busy again in 2010/2011 as the Bombardier Lake Louise Winterstart kicks off the World Cup speed season with men’s super-G and downhill races Nov. 27 and 28 followed by ladies downhill races Dec. 3 and Dec.4 as well as a super-G Dec. 5.
photos Janos Schmidt