Canadian Para-Nordic Athletes Rack Up Five Medals at IPC World Cup in Wisconsin

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January 14, 2013, CABLE, Wisc. (ISN) Canada’s Para-Nordic squad teamed up to win five medals;  one gold, three silver and one bronze – in middle distance cross-country ski races at the IPC World Cup in Cable, Wisconsin on Sunday.

Mark Arendz, of Springton, P.E.I., skied to his second-ever cross-country ski medal, winning the silver in the 10-kilometre skate-ski race in the men’s standing division. The 22-year-old Arendz, who has finished second overall in biathlon on the IPC World Cup standings the last two years clocked a time of 25:08.9.

“I’m very happy with the race. A lot of things were right where I want them, with my speed and fitness,” said Arendz, who now has 17 IPC World Cup medals in his career. “I was having a great race and knew I was on the podium, but it never sunk in until after the race that I was on track for a best-ever cross-country race. It shows that I’m in solid shape for the biathlon races later in the week.

Norway’s Nils-Erik Ulset won the division with a time of 24:07.9.

Brian McKeever and guide Erik Carleton, both of Canmore, Alta., teamed up to win the lone gold medal of the day. A winner of 10 Paralympic medals, the 33-year-old McKeever set the time to beat at 24:03.0 in the men’s 10-kilometre skate-ski visually impaired race.

The path to the podium continued to roll in the women’s races as Canada’s legendary Colette Bourgonje powered her way to the silver medal in the women’s five-kilometre sit-ski division. The six-time Paralympian from Saskatoon, who has skied on the national team for the last 20 years, clocked a time of 14:29.0.

Germany’s Anja Wicker won the women’s sit-ski race with a time of 14:17.0.

Canada also grabbed the silver and bronze medal positions on the women’s visually impaired podium. Robbi Weldon, of Thunder Bay, Ont. clocked a second-place time of 15:38.0 in the five-kilometre skate-ski race. Ontario’s Margarita Gorbounova and her guide, Andrea Bundon, celebrated the bronze with a time of 16:17.0.

The Canadian Para-Nordic Ski Team is using the Wisconsin event to start qualifying athletes, in particular development athletes, for the 2014 Paralympics. Five of the eight development-level athletes to hit the start line on Sunday met the IPC Paralympic qualifying standard.

For complete Canadian and IPC World Cup results, please visit

The IPC World Cup continues on Monday in Cable, Wisconsin.

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 on Canada’s National Ski Teams and Para-Nordic Ski Teams. With the support of its valued corporate partners – Haywood Securities, AltaGas, Statoil and Canadian Pacific – along with the Government of Canada, Canadian Olympic Committee, Canadian Paralympic Committee, Own the Podium and B2ten, Cross Country Canada develops Olympic, Paralympic and world champions. For more information on Cross Country Canada, please visit us at