National Development Centre opens ‘Push’ for Competitive Season

National Development Team
The National Development Centre (NDC) Thunder Bay cross country ski team
National Development Team
The National Development Centre (NDC) Thunder Bay cross country ski team

THUNDER BAY – There isn’t snow on the ground yet, but the dry-land training, but that is not stopping the National Development Centre (NDC) Thunder Bay cross country ski team. The team opened their “push” towards the competitive season with their third annual team kick-off event at one of the organization’s main sponsors – PUSH Fitness Centre.  The event showcased the talented athletes and acknowledged the support of the team’s community sponsors.

The day was highlighted by an exciting roller-ski team sprint relay race featuring NDC athletes. Each team represented NDC’s platinum and gold level sponsors who are Fresh Air Experience (platinum), RBC Royal Bank, CRC Communications, and the event host, PUSH Fitness Centre.

After an exciting 2011/2012 season where the team saw Jack Carlyle and Alannah MacLean qualify for the Junior National Team, Andrea Lee win her first Noram Race and become National University Champion, the team is looking to continue to assert themselves as the lead development centre in Canada.

At the helm of this talented team are two new coaches; Head Coach Mark Doble hailing from Barrie, Ontario and Assistant Coach/Wax Technician Victor Wiltmann from Parry Sound, Ontario  who will be striving to help the athletes represent the Thunder Bay community on the world stage .  Overall, team fitness is at an all time high with athletes focusing on and preparing to qualify for the World Junior and Under 23 Championship team and to also qualify for the Canadian World Cup races taking place in Quebec and Canmore in early December.  The coming season promises to be an exciting one for the team and for the Thunder Bay Ski community since it will play host to two major events. From January 3rd to the 6th, selection races will take place at Lappe Nordic Ski Centre for the 2013 Junior and Under 23 World Championships slated for late January in Liberec, CZE and for the 2013 FIS World Nordic Ski Championships being held in Val di Fiemme, ITA from February 20th-March 3rd.  These January selection events will be a great opportunity to cheer on the team as they compete on home turf against some of the top skiers in the country.

This year will be a very busy one as the team will compete in numerous events across North America to vie for spots on World teams. The season winds up with the Canadian National Championships in Whistler, BC from March 23rd-30th. 

NDC welcomes 4 new faces to the team:

  • Julian Freitag and Evan Palmer-Charette from Thunder Bay, ON
  • Bob Thompson from Woodstock, ON
  • Scott Hill from Toronto, ON

These new faces all bring talent and enthusiasm to an already strong team and will set the foundation for NDC to succeed this season and into the future.  The team now consists of 13 athletes and 3 staff members, the largest team in multiple years.  Below is a complete roster for the 2012/2013 season.

Name Club Hometown Year   on NDC Category
Erin   Tribe Team   Hardwood Barrie 4th Senior   Woman
Dudley   Coulter Big   Thunder Nordic Marathon 3rd Senior   Man (U23)
Jimmy   Gunka Big   Thunder Nordic Thunder   Bay 3rd Senior   Man (U23)
Andrea   Lee Strathcona   Nordic Black   Creek, BC 3rd Senior   Woman (U23)
Andy   Shields Waterloo   Region Nordic Waterloo 3rd Senior   Man (U23)
Jack   Carlyle Soo   Finnish Nordic Sault   Ste. Marie 2nd Junior   Man
Jordan   Cascagnette Team   Hardwood Penetanguishene 2nd Senior   Man (U23)
Alannah   Maclean Walden   Fitness Club Sudbury 2nd Junior   Woman
Nick   Monette Team   Hardwood Oakville 2nd Junior   Man
Scott   Hill Team   Hardwood Toronto 1st Junior   Man
Bob   Thompson Team   Hardwood Woodstock 1st Senior   Man (U23)
Julian   Freitag Big   Thunder Thunder   Bay 1st Junior   Man
Evan   Palmer-Charette Lappe   Nordic Thunder   Bay 1st Junior   Man
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