Ian Mur­ray to com­pete in Al­berta World Cup ski event

Cape Breton Post - - SPORTS - BY T.J. COLELLO

pet­ing at the up­com­ing Olympic Win­ter Games in Van­cou­ver, he’ll be fac­ing the same cal­i­bre of ath­letes.

“It’s ba­si­cally go­ing to be all the Olympic com­peti­tors there,” said the North High­lands Nordic Ski Club mem­ber, who now lives and trains in Can­more. “So it’s ba­si­cally go­ing to be the Olympics, but in Can­more.”

To­day’s sprint event on the 1.7 km track will be the fourth World Cup event for Mur­ray. He com­peted in Ver­non, B.C. in 2005, where he fin­ished in 57th spot and a pair of races in Can­more in 2008, with fin­ishes of 49th and 61st re­spec­tively.

His main goal in to­day’s race is to at least crack the top 30, im­prove upon his best re­sult or put in a strong time.

“It’s a long course be­cause the sprints can be any­where be­tween 1 km at the short­est on the World Cup or they can be up to 1.8 km,” he said, of the host course in Can­more. “This one is 1.75 km or some­thing like that, so it’s right up there, so it’s a very long course and a very hilly course.

“Given the length of it, it’s not a sprint be­cause at about the three minute mark, you hit a huge hill and even though it’s only be about a four-minute race, you can’t burn all your gas in the first 50 me­tres. You have to pace it well.”

Mur­ray, a mem­ber of the Nova Sco­tia pro­vin­cial ski team, is looking to re­bound from his 2009 sea­son, when he bat­tled prob­lems with chronic fa­tigue that white­washed most of his racing.

Mur­ray be­gins racing in the morn­ing with the qual­i­fy­ing round with about 80 com­peti­tors. From there, the top 30 rac­ers ad­vance to the knock­out heats later in the day un­til the sprint fi­nals. The fi­nal races will be shown Satur­day at 6 p.m. on CBC.

His par­ents, Ken and Linda Mur­ray, are in Can­more to cheer on their son. Fri­day, Mur­ray gave an oath on be­half of all the ath­letes com­pet­ing dur­ing the open­ing cer­e­monies.

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