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Bench Talk / Off The Wire

Peace & Quiet In Owen Sound


By Fred Wallace


Everybody needs peace and quiet, and so I virtually left Larisa Yurkiw alone the last time she popped into the city for a break from the Canadian Alpine Ski Team.

Virtually, left her alone.

Asking for a quick, 3 sentence update on the ski season, Larisa told me her competitive season begins December 4th to the 6th at Lake Louise, Alberta.

Then, she'll be off to Europe, yet again, for a sequence of events, which should include the annual World Cup races at Val D'Isere in France.

Returning from Europe, there will be what amounts to a Christmas break, and when the calendar turns 2010, the race will be on for good.

In her own words, the January weekend ski races are more than World Cup events, they are " chances ", and we all know the chances she is referring to is the chance, or opportunity, to be an Olympian on the National Ski Team.

To the best of my knowledge, Canada will send 14 skiers to the Olympic Games and maybe, just maybe, get a tiny exemption to add a few more in the face of being both the host nation, and in light of the fact many Olympic countries, like Lebabnon, won't have ski teams.

Be that as it may, Yurkiw is aiming for an earned spot, not an exemption, when the gate opens in 5 weeks at Lake Louise.

When she tells you it's the most exciting time of her life, you tend to believe it and truly hope that excitement translates into something very big this winter.

I'm Fred Wallace


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