Following the announcement of ski halfipipe’s inauguration into the Winter Olympic Games, the Canadian Freestyle Ski Association has received funding approval from Own the Podium to implement the country’s first National Ski Halfpipe Team.
The CFSA has hired Trennon Paynter as head coach to lead this team to the Sochi Winter Olympic Games in 2014. Paynter, a former mogul Olympian for Australia, is widely recognized as the best ski halfpipe coach in the world. He has been leading a privately funded Canadian halfpipe team since 2007, during which time he assisted athletes in reaching the podium at every major international competition, including FIS World Championships, X Games and Dew Tour events. The CFSA will be hiring an assistant coach in the coming months.
The newly formed National Halfpipe Ski Team includes nine athletes who were selected based on their performances at major events in 2011 (including World Championships, X Games and FIS World Cups) and the 2011 Association of Freeskiing Professionals rankings.
The team is as follows:
Rosalind Groenewoud(Edmonton, Alta.) – current World Champion
Keltie Hansen(Edmonton, Alta.) – bronze medalist at 2011 World Championships
Sarah Burke(Squamish, B.C.) – current X Games and World Cup overall Champion
Justin Dorey(Vernon, B.C.) – ranked 2nd overall in 2011 AFP Rankings
Mike Riddle (Squamish, B.C.) – current World Champion
Megan Gunning(Calgary, Alta.) – silver medalist at 2009 World Championships
Dania Assaly(Edmonton, Alta.) – 1st at 2010 Breckenridge Dew Tour
Matt Margetts(Penticton, B.C.) – 2nd at 2011 European and North Face Open
Noah Bowman(Calgary, Alta.) – Current Junior World Champion
CFSA High Performance Director David Mirota said, “I think this is already a proven team in terms of what these athletes have done in major events. Now with a combination of Trennon’s coaching and support from OTP we can really maximize and improve their performances by giving them tools that we have used successfully in our moguls and aerials programs, like sport science and medical support.”