Nakkertok racers Luke Allan and Clara Hegan claim Gold on the final Day of the Candy Cane Cup

It was a perfect weekend for xc-ski racing at the Nakkertok Ski Centre in Gatineau. The rain held off today as over 600 skiers raced interval, start races in the classic style.

Clara Hegan, from Ottawa, Nakkertok and the Thunder Bay Training Centre was the Open Women’s winner, 20 seconds ahead of her club teammate, Anna Stewart, who had won the previous 2 day’s gold medals. Élie-Anne Tremblay of Skibec, Quebec City was 3rd. Hegan was also the fastest U20 competitor.

Anna Stewart and Luke Allan, each went home with $1,000 first place cheques from the A Hall Mark of Excellence Program. Former National Team coach Marty Hall and his wife Kathy donated $6,000 of prize money to the total of $11,000 given out by the event.

Clara Hegan: The weekend was really good and today went very well. It was great to see everyone out there. It’s nice to be racing at my home club.”

The men raced 10 k also and Nakkertok, Ottawa’s, Luke Allan added his 2nd gold medal of the weekend finishing 22 seconds ahead of Ricardo Izquierdo-Bernier who skis for Spain. Samuel Picard of St-Hippolyte, Quebec, (Fondeurs SC) was 3rd and was also the top junior.

Luke Allan: “The race was awesome today. I went out really hard. The conditions were great, and I had really fast skis. It was super fun to race out there today.”

In the Para-Nordic competitions Yves Bourque and Lyne Marie Bilodeau won gold in the sitski classes and Félix Lafond and Emma Archibald won the standing competitions. Archibald skis for Nova Scotia and the University of Ottawa team.

In the younger categories, local skiers also performed well:

U20 F

  • 1 Clara Hegan, Ottawa, Nakkertok
  • 4 Helen McCulligh, Kanata, Kanata Nordic

U18F

  • 3 Chloé Pharand, Gatineau, Skinouk
  • 4 Jaime Harrington, Ottawa Nakkertok

U16F

  • 4 Evelyn Davies Ottawa, Nakkertok

U14F

  • 1 Esther Lavigne, Cantley, Nakkertok 3 Julianne Gauthier Chelsea, Skinouk

U18 M

  • 1 Mathieu Lacasse, Gatineau, Skinouk

U16 M

  • 2 Owen Siderius Ottawa, Nakkertok
  • 4 Oscar Brun Del Re, Chelsea, Chelsea Nordiq

U14 M

  • 2 Kobe Thompson Ottawa, Nakkertok
  • 3 Félix Dion Ottawa, Nakkertok

There were also locals in World Cup action at Trondheim Norway and Katherine Stewart-Jones, Chelsea, (Nakkertok ski club) finished 18th in a 10k classic race, her first top 20 of the season, in the last pre- Christmas World Cup. Gatineau’s Antoine Cyr, Club Skinouk finished 38th.

That wraps up the weekend of racing at Nakkertok Nordic Centre in Gatineau, but with the forecast weather it looks like the artificial snow loop, the Nakkertrak, will continue to get some good use soon. While there are still lots of races this season in the area, including the Gatineau Loppet, the ENGNE volunteers will now turn their attention to the Canadian Ski Championships to be held March 10-16 back at Nakkertok.

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