CODA, 2010 LegaciesNow Society, Vancouver 2010 Bid Corporation and the Canadian Olympic Committee have combined resources to fund a unique Summer Glacier Training Project that will finally allow Canada's top alpine ski racers, freestyle skiers and snowboarders to train on snow at home this summer. The organizations announced on Tuesday that high-performance athletes representing Alpine Canada Alpin, Canadian Freestyle Ski Association and Canadian Snowboard Federation will have access to Farnham Glacier-ideally located near Panorama Ski Resort in southeastern British Columbia-from June until mid-August for summer training in 2003.
“CODA is committed to giving Canadian athletes the facilities and resources required to be the world's best,” said John Mills, president, CODA, adding a combination of nearly $1-million was invested by partners into the innovative pilot project. “Access to cost-effective, first rate training facilities at home is what Canadian athletes must have if Canada is to attain its goal of becoming a world-leading winter sports nation by 2010.”
Snowcats used for winter skiing operations at CODA's Canada Olympic Park on the western edge of Calgary have already been airlifted onto the Glacier, and CODA's operations crew has completed all preparations on the site to allow for Canada's top snow-sport athletes to begin conducting on-snow training sessions. Helicopters will be used to shuttle the athletes to and from the training area each day, while the snowcats will return them to the top of the glacier between runs.
“This facility will provide new economic opportunities for the Kootenays, and enhanced training opportunities for our athletes,” said British Columbia Premier Gordon Campbell. “It's an excellent example of the benefits that the 2010 Games will provide for our entire province.”
After extensive research into its ideal summer conditions, the glacier training area is expected to save Canada's national snow-sport governing bodies hundreds of thousands of dollars in travel costs if the pilot project is a success and its importance is validated. Traditionally, summer training for our athletes has either been in the Southern Hemisphere or on European glaciers similar to the Farnham Glacier, either option was extremely costly. Training at home allows the national bodies to redirect those savings into programming, allowing sport organizations to increase the quality of their programs without increasing cost.
“This is one of the many examples of the sport partnerships that have resulted from the Vancouver 2010 Bid,” said 2010 LegaciesNow president Marion Lay. “This is a one-of-a-kind facility in Canada, and equals or betters any glacier training sites in the world.”
Working closely with the Vancouver 2010 Bid Corporation, CODA has secured an investigative use permit from B.C. Land and Water to operate this pilot project.
“Canada's Bid for the 2010 Winter Games is about establishing partnerships to help create benefits for athletes and communities and to contribute to the future of the Olympic movement,” said Jack Poole, chairman and chief executive officer of the Vancouver 2010 Bid Corporation. “This project is an example of how the Bid has brought people together in the spirit of Olympism.”
CODA has experience in operating glaciers for winter high-performance sport training during the summer months. Canada's top nordic athletes have been using CODA's Haig Glacier near Canmore, Alta. for summer training purposes since 1994.
CODA will review the results of the Summer Glacier Training Project this fall before determining whether training should be repeated annually, and/or if the site should be developed as a more permanent facility to assist in the continued development of more international Canadian medal winners.
“In consultation with local, regional and national stakeholders, CODA will analyze what options are best for the community and for Canada's snow-sport athletes,” said John Mills, who adds the snow-sport glacier is the fifth major project in CODA's commitment to create the nation's first Canadian Centre of Sport Excellence. “What we know for sure is that this summer, Canada's snowboarders, freestyle skiers and alpine ski racers are finally, for the first time ever, training on snow at home.”
Vancouver is Canada's Candidate City for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games and Paralympic Winter Games. Member partners of the Vancouver Bid Corporation are the Government of Canada, the Province of British Columbia, the City of Vancouver, the Resort Municipality of Whistler and the Canadian Olympic Committee. The Bid Corporation's board of directors is drawn from a variety of community interests, including all levels of government, First Nations, and the business and sport communities. It is supported by more than 275 companies, corporations and organizations. The International Olympic Committee will select the Host City of the 2010 Winter Games on July 2, 2003.
CODA is Canada's leader in developing Olympic winter sport excellence from the grassroots level to the country's best athletes. A not-for-profit organization, CODA financially supports national sport organizations, educational opportunities and subsidizes the operation of unique training and recreational facilities used by the nation's top athletes and the general public including: Canada Olympic Park; Olympic Oval; Ice House; Haig Glacier; and Bill Warren Training Centre at the Canmore Nordic Centre. The country's largest private financial supporter of Olympic winter sport, CODA is working to create the nation's first Canadian Centre of Sport Excellence in southern Alberta where athletes can access world-leading advanced human and technical resources and training facilities. CODA is Vancouver 2010's Sport Development Supporter. For more information on CODA, or the Canadian Centre of Sport Excellence, please visit on the Internet