Chris Dornan

ANMORE, Alta.—The next generation of Olympic cross-country ski athletes will look to gain valuable international experience while representing Canada at the 2012 Junior and Under-23 World Championships in Erzurum, Turkey, February 19-26.

CrossCountry Canada named 16 athletes that will wear Canadian colours at the international junior Nordic skiing festival on Tuesday, following this pastweekend’s selection trials at Whistler Olypmpic Park.

“This is a young but experienced group of athletes that have made huge progress racing both domestically on the Haywood NorAm circuit and internationally,” said Tom Holland, high-performance director, Cross Country Canada. “The talent pool of young cross-country skiers continues to grow across the country, and these athletes are well-prepared to achieve excellence in Turkey.”

Highlighting the team is five athletes that hail from Whitehorse, marking the only region to have athletes place in each category and gender classification.

“It is clear through these results that Whitehorse is leading the country with strong grassroots Nordic ski programs,” said Holland. “Whitehorse has a well-developed club with strong coaching and volunteer resources which are contributing immensely to the successful development of their athletes.”

Five athletes will also represent Alberta – all in the under-23 class, four athletes are from Quebec, while one athlete skis out of British Columbia.

The following is a complete list of Canada’s 2012 Junior and Under-23 World Championship Teams:

Junior Team: Under-23 Team:

Dahria Beatty – Whitehorse

Emily Nishikawa – Whitehorse

Janelle Greer – Whitehorse

Heidi Widmer – Banff, Alta.

Anne-Marie Comeau – St-Ferréol-les-Neiges, Que.

Marlis Kromm – Calgary

Emilie Stewart-Jones – Chelsea, Que.

Annika Hicks – Canmore, Alta.

Raphael Couturier – Quebec

Graeme Killick – Banff, Alta.

Knute Johnsgarrd – Whitehorse

Jesse Cockney – Calgary

Geoffrey Richards – Rossland, B.C.

David Greer – Whitehorse

Alexis Turgeon – Gatineau, Que.

Chris Hamilton – Thunder Bay, Ont.

The Canadian Team will travel to Turkey on February 11, 2012.

Cross Country Canada is the governing body of cross-country skiing in Canada, which is the nation’s optimal winter sport and recreational activity with more than one million Canadians participating annually. Its 55,000 members include athletes, coaches, officials and skiers of all ages and abilities, including those onCanada’s National Ski Teams and Para-Nordic Ski Teams. With the support of its valued corporate partners – Haywood Securities Inc., AltaGas, Teck Resources Ltd., Canadian Pacific, and Statoil – along with the Government of Canada, Canadian Olympic Committee, Canadian Paralympic Committee and Own the Podium, Cross Country Canada develops Olympic, Paralympic and world champions. For more information on Cross Country Canada, please visit us at