Submitted by Kip Harrington, OST Head Coach and Program Director 

Over the past few weeks I had the opportunity to be involved with the Ontario OCUP racing from U14 to U16 and FIS plus this week’s U14 Speed Camp at Searchmont.  I saw hundreds of racers, dozens of coaches, volunteers, and parents, and it was awesome. I am reminded that we have talented athletes, great coaches and a lot of support from volunteers and clubs. It is great to see ski racing alive and well in Ontario.

We had some great conversations with coaches and parents including the AOA/SOD parent meetings at the U14 and U16 OCUP Mid-winter series and the AOA Athletic Committee town hall meeting plus a U19 coaches meeting. This was a lot of input and be assured we are listening and we know we have work to do.

I also had individual conversations with racers and coaches, on the hill and riding the lifts. I saw familiar faces – people I raced with or coached with over the years, ski suppliers – and met new people. Fun all around and it is terrific to see so many energized and motivated people. One of my major goals with AOA is to harness that energy and bring people and expertise together to improve our programs and raise our collective game.

At Searchmont this week the coaches held daily debrief sessions after training to talk about the day; what we saw, what we can improve, and specifically about skiing. These debriefs were very productive, and we saw great changes and improvements in the kids from day to day. There is always something to talk about with regard to programming, politics, points and qualifications. It was really fun and refreshing to talk about kids and skiing. That is what this is all about, right?

Having watched the U14-U16-FIS races in Collingwood, I saw talented skiers, and terrific performances. I also noticed a fairly high DNF rate in all age groups, particularly in slalom and spent some time thinking about and discussing why that may be, and what we can do. My opinion is simple – continue focusing on the skiing fundamentals which includes good balance and position on the skis and maintaining a quiet upper body so the legs can work and the racer can control the turns and adapt to courses and terrain. I saw really strong carving skills, but a lot of lateral movement with the body, and extra movement with the shoulders and arms, which makes it hard to stay in balance, control the turn, and adapt to terrain and courses. I encourage the racers to keep up the gate training, but also free ski working on technique and make sure to “soul ski”. Soul skiing is when we ski for fun on all terrain, a different speeds, at every chance we get. Good for the soul. Good for your skiing.

I want to congratulate all of the athletes that qualified for the U16 National Championships. This is a level of achievement that you should be proud of. There is still time to prepare and improve before the championships so stay focused and keep up the good work. Best of luck, we are behind you.

I also have a message for all of the athletes that worked so hard but did not qualify for the U16 championships – we believe in you. You have worked hard, and you are competitive people, so not achieving a goal will hurt. This is perfectly natural. There is one thing that is certain in life for every single one of us – there will be challenges, there will be setbacks, there will be disappointments. That is a sure thing. What matters is how we respond. There is always an opportunity that comes with any challenge, to improve something you may not otherwise have taken time to improve, and to see things in a different light. Becoming a great ski racer takes time. So keep the faith my friends. Enjoy ski racing and keep working.

All the best,
Kip Harrington


Tips provided by SXS Fitness

Bridging is a common exercise used by all types of people, from recovering weekend warriors to elite athletes. The exercise helps increase strength of the hip extension muscles (the 3 hamstring muscles and gluteus maximus) and  increases pelvic/trunk/lower back stability (pelvic floor muscles, internal/external obliques and erector spinae muscles). As I’m sure you know alpine skiing puts a lot of work on the legs, hips and core. Starting every workout with a bridge, or adding it into a daily muscle engagement/mobility routine is a great way to get the body firing these important muscles properly so when you compete, you don’t have to think about them – they will already be stable!


Lie on your back with knees up, feet on the floor with hips, knees and heel in line with each other. Tuck through the tail bone and roll up the spine one vertebrae at a time until you reach the shoulders. DO NOT arch up like a yoga pose, keep your chest relaxed and keep the work in the core and lower body. Press down into the heels (or even lift your toes) to feel the hamstrings and glutes working. Hold with the pelvis neutral (not arched too much up or down) for 30 seconds. Every week increase the hold by 10 seconds until you reach 90 seconds. Perform this during your warm up before a workout, or every day as a part of your daily body workout routine.



Collingwood, ON (February 9, 2018) — Alpine Ontario Alpin (AOA) would like to congratulate the 40 alpine ski racers selected to compete on Team Ontario in the upcoming March 6-10th Sport Chek U16 National Championships. The Southern Ontario Division (SOD) will be hosting 160 of Canada’s best 14 and 15-year old racers as they compete in Slalom, Giant Slalom, Super G and a Dual race at four venues situated along the southern shores of Georgian Bay in the Town of the Blue Mountains. The host ski hills for the 5-day competition will include Georgian Peaks Club, Craigleith Ski Club, Alpine Ski Club and the Osler Bluff Ski Club. Alpine Canada Alpin will be overseeing the entire competition led by Dusan Grasic, ACA’s Domestic Director of Sport.

Ontario, as the host province, will have the largest quota with 40 competitors; BC, Alberta and Quebec are sending 28 athletes each; Nova Scotia and New Brunswick will send 10 athletes each, PEI four athletes, Newfoundland three, and Saskatchewan one athlete. The following Ontario athletes were selected after a 5-day qualifying competition at the recent Mackenzie Investments U16 OCUP Mid-Winter series.

Team Ontario – Men:

  1. Kyle Blandford             Toronto Ski Club*
  2. Christopher Burnes     Craigleith Ski Club
  3. George Cantoni            Georgian Peaks Ski Club
  4. Brian Donnelly            Craigleith Ski Club*
  5. Leandre Duhamel      Camp Fortune Ski Club/NCD
  6. James Gatcliffe           Georgian Peaks Ski Club*
  7. Dylan Gust                   Craigleith Ski Club
  8. Griffen Hanson           Osler Bluff Ski Club*
  9. Liam Hickey                Craigleith Ski Club*
  10. Zach Hyland                Craigleith Ski Club
  11. Reid Kappele             Craigleith Ski Club
  12. Matthew Kendall       Caledon Ski Club*
  13. Noah Kasdorf             Camp Fortune Ski Club/NCD
  14. Oleksa Mojsiak          Georgian Peaks Ski Club
  15. Benjamin Neylan       National Ski Academy
  16. Ellis Reid                     Craigleith Ski Club*
  17. Jeffrey Skinner           Georgian Peaks Ski Club
  18. Ryan Turnball             Craigleith Ski Club*
  19. Aleksas Valadka          Georgian Peaks Ski Club*
  20. Aidan Walters             Georgian Peaks Ski Club*
  21. Mackenzie Wood        Georgian Peaks Ski Club*

Team Ontario – Women:

  1. Amelie Alkier              Georgian Peaks Ski Club*
  2. Ashley Campbell         Georgian Peaks Ski Club
  3. Sydney Basil                Alpine Ski Club*
  4. Lauren Brackett          National Ski Academy
  5. Samantha Brooks       Caledon Ski Club
  6. Cassidy Brooks           Caledon Ski Club
  7. Annie Deeks                Craigleith Ski Club
  8. Gabby Eastwood        Georgian Peaks Ski Club*
  9. Nikki Finoro               National Ski Academy
  10. Tessa Foote                 National Ski Academy
  11. Emma Gosselin          Osler Bluff Ski Club*
  12. Sarah Graham            Georgian Peaks Ski Club*
  13. Gillian Hamilton        Camp Fortune Ski Club/NCD
  14. Lauren Hunter           Georgian Peaks Ski Club
  15. Cadence Kiss              Alpine Ski Club*
  16. Claire Macdonell        Georgian Peaks Ski Club
  17. Frances Macgregor    Norwesters Alpine Club/LSDA*
  18. Emma Reid                 Devil’s Glen Country Club
  19. Penny Robinson         Thunder Bay Fast/LSDA – declined the selection
  20. Elizabeth Sullivan       Alpine Ski Club – injury status, will not compete
  21. Spencer Watson         Camp Fortune Ski Club

Athletes with an asterisk after their name participated in the 2017 U16 High Performance Program Alpine Ontario launched to its member clubs last winter. This program was the first of its kind, with an ultimate goal to strengthen U16 performance at higher level competitions. The athletes participated in and completed an off-season dryland program with the Canadian Sport Institute of Ontario; mobility screening with Totem Wellness; a mentorship program with ex-athletes, including many alumni from the National Ski Team; spring and fall team-building weekends, and 28 of the 40 skiers attended a 12-day on snow camp in Switzerland.

Robyn Skinner, AOA’s Competition Director says, “We congratulate all our U16 athletes in the OCUP series. With the criteria coming down to a 5-day, mid-winter series we know these races represented the harsh reality of our sport – including the pressure to perform and being race-ready. AOA is encouraged to see that 20 of these athletes were part of the 2017 U16 program that was launched last winter. This was a new idea for our organization and the real test will be at Nationals as to how these kids are competing against the rest of Canada.”

Bill Reeves, the ROC Chair of the U16 Nationals events adds, “I would like to congratulate all the young women and men from across Canada on being selected to their Provincial Teams.  I would also like to thank Alpine Canada and our title sponsor Sport Chek along with our presenting sponsors HSBC, Project X Ltd, CTRE Productions and Helly Hansen for helping support these championships and ski racing across the country.  We are looking forward to welcoming all the athletes to the Town of the Blue Mountains and Collingwood, Ontario and hosting a very competitive event.”

Racers and families can find more information on the official event website

– End –

Alpine Ontario Alpin (AOA) is the provincial governing body for the sport of alpine ski racing in Ontario. Alpine Ontario’s newly refined mission is to provide leadership and structure for high quality, sustainable and affordable programming and to communicate the competitive, recreational and lifestyle benefits of ski racing to the community. AOA represents four divisions, 44 member clubs and over 30,000 active athletes, coaches and officials (volunteers). AOA coordinates several successful programs across the province and continues to foster the development of “state of the art” ski-racing programs from the grass roots level to the elite level.
For more information contact:
Kristin Ellis
Communications Manager
Alpine Ontario Alpin (AOA)
705-444-5111 x132


AOA is proud to offer its membership a new, fun idea showcasing Ontario Skiing Legends in a 5-minute journal format.

What is a 5 Minute Journal?
A 5 Minute Journal is a small book with daily entries and inspirational quotes that guide the writer through steps of positivity and overall wellbeing. The journal template allows our users to start their day with affirmations and daily objectives, and end their day with reflection and gratitude. Each calendar week will start with a photo of a legend and their personal quote of encouragement or general word of advice.

Why are we doing this?
It has been scientifically noted that those who journal and spend time reflecting daily, are generally happier and more optimistic individuals.

We at AOA are committed not only to creating world class athletes but also to developing well rounded people who will one day be leaders in their field.   We believe that the 5-Minute Journals will improve our members overall state of mind and have a positive impact throughout the many levels of this sport.

The book will provide AOA with the opportunity to showcase 40 pages of photos and quotes from individuals who have made significant contributions to the sport of Alpine Skiing in Ontario.  We would like to recognize these leaders and ensure that the next generation learns more about the history of this great sport in Ontario!

Click here to purchase your very own Legends Journal. All proceeds raised from the sales of our journals will go directly to our fundraising budget.

Below is a list of the Alpine events. Click here to visit the ACA schedule including Para & SX




Thurs Feb 8 Men’s Downhill 1st training 9:00pm 11:00am
Fri Feb 9 Men’s Downhill 2nd training 9:00pm 11:00am
Sat Feb 10 Men’s Downhill 3rd training 9:00pm 11:00am
Sun Feb 11 Men’s Downhill (championship) 9:00pm 11:00am
Mon Feb 12 Ladies’ Giant Slalom Run 1
Men’s Alpine Combines Downhill 1st trainingLadies’ Giant Slalom Run 2 (championship)
Tues Feb 13 Men’s Alpine Combined Downhill
Men’s Alpine Combined Slalom (championship)


Wed Feb 14 Ladies’ Slalom Run 1

Ladies’ Slalom Run 2 (championship)





Thurs Feb 15 Men’s Super-G (championship) 9:00pm 11:00am
Sat Feb 17 Ladies’ Super-G (championship) 9:00pm 11:00am
Sun Feb 18 Men’s Giant Slalom Run 1

Ladies’ Downhill 1st Training

Men’s Giant Slalom Run 2 (championship)




Mon Feb 19 Ladies’ Downhill 2nd Training 9:00pm 11:00am
Tues Feb 20 Ladies’ Downhill 3rd Training 9:00pm 11:00am
Wed Feb 21 Ladies’ Downhill (championship) 9:00pm 11:00am
Thurs Feb 22 Men’s Slalom Run 1

Ladies’ Alpine Combined

Men’s Slalom Run 2 (championship)



Fri Feb 23 Ladies’ Alpine Combined Downhill
Ladies’ Alpine Combined Slalom (championship)
Sat Feb 24 Alpine Team Event 1/8 Final 1
Alpine Team Event 1/8 Final 2
Alpine Team Event 1/8 Final 3
Alpine Team Event 1/8 Final 4
Alpine Team Event 1/8 Final 5
Alpine Team Event 1/8 Final 6
Alpine Team Event 1/8 Final 7
Alpine Team Event 1/8 Final 8
Alpine Team Event Quarterfinal 1
Alpine Team Event Quarterfinal 2
Alpine Team Event Quarterfinal 3
Alpine Team Event Quarterfinal 4Alpine Team Event Semifinal 1Alpine Team Event Semifinal 2
Alpine Team Event Small Final (Bronze)
Alpine Team Event Big Final (Gold)






Gwen Binsfeld, the AOA Para Program Directors submits 

“Alpine Canada invited five Ontario Para Athletes to their Rising Stars Camp in Kimberley last week. Mark Newton, Para-Alpine Athlete & Sport Development Manager, together with ACA Paralympic coach Lasse Ericsson, provided an excellent opportunity for Ontario athletes to work with WC level coaches, and ACA development team athletes. Five of the six invitees were from Ontario!

Sit skiers Rod Crane, and Brian Rowland were able to put their new rigs to the test on the bigger wide open hills, while three trackers (leg amps, skiing on one ski) Rebecca Mideros and Abbey VanDuzer worked on taking slalom gates. Sarah Gillies was also invited, but chose to stay back to do the Mackenzie Investments U16 OCUP Mid-Winter series. A great week for everyone.

All skiers are headed for Ontario Winter Games next month, together with the rest of our Ontario Para athletes.”

Submitted by SXS Fitness’s Stefan Overgaard.

Increasing Your Sunshine Vitamin

“I have a feeling I am not the only one craving a bit of warm sunshine these days. It may be your body telling you, you need some extra vitamin D😉 Sun exposure helps our bodies make and activate Vitamin D.

According to statistics Canada, in the winter, 40% of Canadians have below the recommended level of Vitamin D levels (50nmol/L). Low vitamin D levels can lead to osteoporosis and has been associated (not a direct cause) with increased risk of heart disease, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and even some cancers.

Increase your food intake of Vitamin D by eating more egg yolk (no longer on the “bad list”), good quality fatty fish like salmon or mackerel and dairy (or non-dairy) milk with added Vitamin D. You can also supplement Vitamin D, but make sure to choose the correct product. Vitamin D can come in different forms. For supplement use you want to look for D3, NOT D2. Although it used to be thought that both forms were fine for supplement use, more studies are showing that the D3 version is more effective at increasing 25-hydroxyvitamin D blood levels- the active form of Vitamin D.

Speak to your doctor or regulated health professional to see if Vitamin D supplementation is right for you; and of course you can use this tip as your rational for booking that amazing sunshine vacation you have been dreaming of and increase your Vitamin D with a little vitamin Sunshine.”

Tips provided by SXS Fitness, learn more here 

Rossiter Raffle online tickets sales tally:
Craigleith Ski Club: 65 = $1,300
Osler Bluff Ski Club: 63 = $1,260
Chicopee Ski Club: 25 = $500
Georgian Peaks: 23 = $460
National Ski Academy: 11 = $220
Alpine Ski Club: 6 = $120
Mansfield Ski Club:5 = $100
Caledon Ski Club:5 = $100
Toronto Ski Club: 3 – $60
Heights Skiing and Country Club: 2 = $40
Jozo Weider Ski Club: 2 = $40
Beaver Valley Ski Club: 2 = $40
Funds raised* remains at the ski club to be used specifically for Coach Development for each club. For example is coaches want to take an additional CSCF course they will have resources at their club to support the time off work and the fees involved. *less AOA raffle expenses = license & marketing fees.
Clubs also have tickets to sell in person, the above tally only represents the online sales. Just remember “Every Kid Deserves a Great Coach” and please keep promoting to your friends! Draw is on April 2nd, boat value $55,000.
If clubs have not yet signed up for the Club Excellence/Raffle program there is still time to do so. Please visit this page and start by completing your COACHING SURVEY. 

COLLINGWOOD, ON (February 5th, 2018) –– Alpine Ontario Alpin and the Southern Ontario Division welcome Pizza Pizza as the new title sponsor of the SOD Ski Team. The title sponsorship builds on a 2017 partnership that saw Pizza Pizza become the presenting sponsor of the Road to the OCUP Finals – a fruitful partnership that afforded Canada’s leading pizza chain a platform to serve and connect with hundreds of families throughout the province. This season Pizza Pizza has opted to support the SOD Ski Team that draws skiers from the 27 clubs located in the Southern Ontario Division..

Supporting events in the communities we serve is a big part of our culture and very important to us,” says Paul Goddard, Chief Executive Officer, Pizza Pizza Limited. “We are excited to be partnering again with Alpine Ontario and look forward to connecting with participants and spectators in a fun and engaging way, on and off the slopes.

The SOD Ski Team is the premier ski team in the Southern Ontario Division and now in its fourth season back under the Alpine Ontario Alpin umbrella. The team replaced the former Escarpment Team and has grown from four athletes to a group of 28, composed of 10 women and 18 men. Like other divisional teams (NOD, LSDA and NCD), the SOD Ski Team is one of the development paths to the Ontario and Canadian Alpine Ski Teams.

The SOD Ski Team has considerable expenses to support the travel and competition requirements of its members,” says T.E.S. Hynes, SOD Program Director. “We are extremely grateful to the team at Pizza Pizza for its generous support of alpine ski racing on our road to excellence and athlete development.”

The SOD Ski Team offers a year-round program starting in May of each year that includes dry land and on-snow camps. The team works with specific dry land trainers, both in Collingwood and in Toronto with the Canadian Sport Institute Ontario, and has close relationships with ski manufacturers and local race retailers to tend to the equipment needs of each athlete.



About Pizza Pizza Limited
For 50 years, Pizza Pizza Limited has been guided by a vision of  “Always the “best food, made especially for you”, with a focus on quality ingredients, customer service, continuous innovation and community involvement. With more than 750 locations across Canada, the company is Canada’s pizza pioneer and a quick-service restaurant leader, operating two banners – Pizza Pizza and Pizza 73 – that deliver quality food choices, diverse menus and exciting promotions for all tastes, lifestyles and budgets. Please visit and for more information.

About Alpine Ontario Alpin
Alpine Ontario Alpin is the provincial governing body for the sport of alpine ski racing in Ontario. Alpine Ontario’s newly refined mission is to provide leadership and structure for high quality, sustainable and affordable programming and to communicate the competitive, recreational and lifestyle benefits of ski racing to the community. AOA represents four divisions, 44 member clubs and over 30,000 active athletes, coaches and officials (volunteers). AOA coordinates several successful programs across the province and continues to foster the development of “state of the art” ski-racing programs from the grass roots level to the elite level.

For more information contact:

Pizza Pizza Limited
Daniel Torchia
Torchia Communications

Alpine Ontario Alpin
Kristin Ellis
Communications Manager
Alpine Ontario Alpin (AOA)
705-444-5111 x132


As submitted to the AOA Chair and Executive Director from the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport. 

February 1, 2018

Dear Mr. Barrett,

On behalf of the Government of Ontario, thank you for supporting and promoting community sport, recreation and physical activity in our province. Our government is committed to helping people of all ages and abilities get active, stay fit, and live healthier lives.

In December 2017, the province announced support for the Ontario Parasport Strong strategy, a legacy of the 2017 Invictus Games, to increase opportunities for people living with physical disabilities to participate in sport. This includes a dedicated grant program for Provincial Sport Organizations and Multi-sport Organizations to support the development of parasport programming and build system capacity.

I am pleased to inform you that the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport has approved your Para Alpine Program Alignment Phase 1 initiative with financial funding. Details and terms of your agreement will be communicated to you shortly by Patricia Vena or your respective sport consultant.

Together, we are laying an important foundation for active living through all stages of a person’s life. I wish you much success in your project activities.

With kind regards,

Daiene Vernile