Thomp­son eyes Olympics

Wood­stock’s Bob Thomp­son will aim for a spot on Canada’s Win­ter Olympic ski team

Sentinel-Review (Woodstock) - - SPORTS - GREG COL­GAN

Bob Thomp­son has im­proved on his results with each pass­ing ski sea­son.

As he en­ters the 2017-18 com­pet­i­tive sea­son, he’s aim­ing for his best yet with both the Win­ter Olympics as the main goal.

“I hope to qual­ify for the open­ing World Cup sprint starts like I did last year,” Thomp­son wrote in an email from Aus­tria where he’d been train­ing in pre­vi­ous weeks be­fore re­turn­ing to Canada.

“Get­ting three top 30 results on the World Cup cir­cuit is the strong­est Olympic pre-qual­i­fi­ca­tion stan­dard I can get. Hav­ing fin­ished 30th in the World Cup fi­nals at the end of last win­ter, I just need two more and there are two sprints in De­cem­ber I can qual­ify for,” he added. “Win­ning an Olympic start is my pri­mary goal for this year.”

The Wood­stock Col­le­giate Institute grad­u­ate will hold a fundraiser tonight at Bos­ton Pizza from 5 to 7 p.m. to help off­set costs for his up­com­ing sea­son.

The ul­ti­mate goal is the Win­ter Olympics, which saw Thomp­son come close in 2014 when he won an Olympic qual­i­fy­ing race in 2014.

This past sea­son saw Thomp­son end with his most suc­cess­ful year to date. He com­peted in 11 World Cup races and qual­i­fied for sprint heats for the first time. He’s hop­ing the suc­cess from last and pre­vi­ous years will con­tinue to pro­pel him for­ward.

“Hav­ing done that, I think will take some of the pres­sure off try­ing to do it for the first time with not know­ing how it takes,” he wrote. “I can now go into fu­ture starts more con­fi­dent know­ing more about how it feels to be in the mix with the best in the world.”

Through­out the sum­mer, Thomp­son said he trained with a mix of run­ning, roller ski­ing, bik­ing and ski walk­ing and a train­ing camp in Thun­der Bay with the ma­jor­ity of Canada’s top skiers at­tend­ing.

“This made for op­por­tu­ni­ties to push my­self against my com­peti­tors from the other train­ing cen­tres in Can­more and Que­bec.”

In the com­ing months, Thomp­son will be kept busy on the slopes in North Amer­ica and Europe, start­ing with the Frozen Thun­der World Cup qual­i­fier Nov. 1 with World Cup races be­gin­ning the last week­end of Novem­ber. The NorAms also open in Canada the end of Novem­ber with an Olympic qual­i­fier in Mont St. Anne, Que. in early Jan­uary.

Thomp­son spent the past sev­eral weeks train­ing in Europe on the Dach­stein Glacier in Aus­tria. He said they stayed at a 700-me­tre el­e­va­tion and go up to at least 2,600m to prac­tice on 15-kilo­me­tres of ski trails.

“The early on snow time and the ben­e­fits of al­ti­tude train­ing were the main ad­van­tages of the camp,” he wrote. “The snow was in­cred­i­ble this year with win­ter like con­di­tions for most of the three weeks we skied.”

In ad­di­tion to the phys­i­cal train­ing, he noted he’d been im­prov­ing his nu­tri­tion and re­cov­ery process fol­low­ing races.

“There are the smaller things that can build to make very large gains over a sea­son or ca­reer,” he wrote. “On top of try­ing to make my sprint­ing as solid as I can.”

For peo­ple in­ter­ested in fol­low­ing along Thomp­son’s year or to help with fundrais­ing, visit his web­site at: http://thomp­son-xc­skier.ca/in­dex.html gcol­gan@post­media.com twit­ter.com/Gre­gatWSR

I hope to qual­ify for the open­ing World Cup sprint starts like I did last year.”

Fundraiser for up­com­ing ski sea­son

To help raise money for use through­out the ski­ing 5 to 7 p.m.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

Wood­stock's Bob Thomp­son, seen here ski­ing at U.S. ski na­tion­als, is eye­ing a pos­si­ble spot on Canada's Win­ter Olympic team. The Wood­stock Col­le­giate Institute grad­u­ate will hold a fundraiser tonight.

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