THUNDER BAY – Haywood Noram Ontario Cup Nordic Ski racing continued today at the Lappe Nordic Ski Centre in Thunder Bay. Young skiers from Thunder Bay showed their strength in the sprint races for the second day of racing in the Ontario Cup series. The early morning time trial qualification round saw many local athletes advance to the heats. The Midget Girls & Boys, Juvenile Girls & Boys and Junior girls all raced a 1 km classic sprint, while the Junior boys raced a more challenging 1.2 km race.
Most categories had local skiers on the podium. Midget girl, Tessa Schwar of Lappe Nordic finished with a silver medal after qualifying third in time trial. In only her second year of racing the Ontario Cup circuit, Schwar is still the youngest of her group as she is racing up. While no local midget boys broke onto the podium, three Big Thunder athletes made it to the A-Final finishing strong and rounding off the top six.
Juvenile girl, Laura Inkila, of Lappe Nordic, was on the podium again, this time finishing with a gold medal. She qualified in first place by a mere 0.13 and proceeded to cruise through and win all her heats to bring her her first victory of the year. Juvenile boy, Tony Gunka, of Big Thunder, also finished big with a bronze medal win. He outstretched Austin Valjas at the line for his first podium finish of the year.
Camille Hamm, of Big Thunder, rounded out the local podium finishes with a bronze medal. After finishing seventh in the qualifier, she was able to improve her position and proved her strength finishing on the podium.
Racing continues at Lappe throughout the weekend with the Haywood NorAm Classic Sprints on Saturday, featuring many of the best cross country skiers in Canada. Athletes will look to do well in this race to qualify for the World Junior or World U23 Championships. On Sunday all athletes take to the trails for the last race of the event, a medium distance skate race. Full results can be found at www.zone4.ca. Visit www.skinoram2013.com for more information.