Aus­tralian cross-coun­try team had a busy in­ter­na­tional sea­son

Alpine News - - Cross Country - BY FINN MARSLAND PHOTO: Ge­or­gia Merritt

PHO­TOS from the Aus­tralian cross-coun­try (XC) team trav­el­ling and com­pet­ing in Europe and North America dur­ing the 2014/2015 in­ter­na­tional com­pe­ti­tion sea­son.

Many thanks to the sup­port­ers of the AUSXC, in par­tic­u­lar Falls Creek the Na­tional Train­ing Cen­tre, Ski & Snow­board Aus­tralia and sup­port­ers of the XC To­wards 2018 fundrais­ing cam­paign.

Please fol­low Aus­tralian cross-coun­try ski rac­ing at and @ausxc on Twit­ter, Instagram and Face­book.

NSW IN­TER­SCHOOLS Snows­ports wel­comes the chal­lenges and ex­cite­ment of 2015 fol­low­ing on from last year’s record event en­tries.

In­ter­schools en­cour­ages stu­dents of all abil­i­ties and lev­els to com­pete for their school in a com­pet­i­tive snows­ports com­pe­ti­tion. School stu­dents can com­pete in up to seven snow sports dis­ci­plines for alpine and cross coun­try skiers and snow­board­ers.

The event fo­cuses on fun in ski­ing and snow­board­ing at the re­gional cham­pi­onships and this is all set in a frame­work of friendly com­pe­ti­tion. As the com­pe­ti­tion steps up to the state and na­tional stages, the level of com­pe­ti­tion and the dif­fi­culty of the cour­ses also steps up, but al­ways with a sense of fair and en­joy­able com­pe­ti­tion.

Last sea­son, 2930 school stu­dents par­tic­i­pated from 285 schools. Both Per­isher and Thredbo will host the cham­pi­onships that will see 6000 en­tries across the four re­gional cham­pi­onships; the Subaru QLD Cham­pi­onships, Trav­elplan Ski North­ern NSW Cham­pi­onships, Trav­elplan Ski Syd­ney Cham­pi­onships and the Subaru ACTSouth­ern NSW Cham­pi­onships.

The In­ter­schools Cham­pi­onships is a start­ing block for fur­ther snow sports com­pe­ti­tion and has seen 20 Olympians start their ca­reer at In­ter­schools com­pe­ti­tions. Dur­ing the north­ern win­ter, we en­joy hear­ing re­sults from former and cur­rent In­ter­schools par­tic­i­pants who are rep­re­sent­ing Aus­tralia over­seas.

Matt Gra­ham, former In­ter­schools com­peti­tor rep­re­sent­ing Cen­tral Coast Gram­mar, had a highly suc­cess­ful sea­son claim­ing three World Cup medals in moguls ski­ing. Ear­lier this year, Gra­ham re­ceived his first World Cup medal with sil­ver in Deer Val­ley, USA. This was fol­lowed up with another sec­ond place in Val St Come, Canada. At the last event of the sea­son for Gra­ham, he took out the bronze medal in the dual moguls.

At only 20 years of age, we look for­ward to cheer­ing Matt on for fu­ture World Cup sea­sons and the 2018 Win­ter Olympic Games in Korea.

A ris­ing star is cur­rent In­ter­schools com­peti­tor from Shore, Ben Tudhope, who com­petes in para-snow­board­ing events over­seas. In 2014, Ben was the youngest ath­lete to rep­re­sent Aus­tralia at the Win­ter Par­a­lympics. This north­ern sea­son, Tudhope was the youngest Aus­tralian to com­pete at the X-Games.

For in­for­ma­tion on the NSW In­ter­schools Cham­pi­onships, please visit our new look web­site, www.nswin­ter­

ONE HOT LAP: Pair­ing up with Paul Ko­vacs in the Team Sprint at the 2015 World Cham­pi­onship in Falun, Swe­den, Phillip Belling­ham sur­prised the crowd of 60,000 spec­ta­tors by post­ing the fastest lap on the 4th leg of the men’s semi-fi­nal. The team went on

PHOTO: JC Le­gras FAST & FE­MALE: Aus­tralia fielded its largest ever women’s team at the World Cham­pi­onship in Falun in­clud­ing three mak­ing their de­but at this level of com­pe­ti­tion. A women’s re­lay team was en­tered for the first time since 1993, how­ever

FI­NAL­ISTS: Jessica Yeaton and Phillip Belling­ham broke new ground for Aus­tralia at the World Univer­sity Win­ter Games, both fin­ish­ing 8th in the Freestyle Sprint. This was the first time Aus­tralian ath­letes pro­gressed past the sprint quar­ter fi­nals in a

NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK: Eight new ju­nior skiers made the Aus­tralian team this year, in­clud­ing Finlay Clarke from Wan­garatta and Stella Ajani from Mel­bourne who par­tic­i­pated in the AUSXC Ju­nior De­vel­op­ment Tour to Canada. A num­ber of these ath­letes will

CATCH ME IF YOU CAN: Ed­ward Ne­gus of Cranbrook com­petes at Thredbo last year. PHOTO: Steve Cuff

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