Cross-country skiing: Cendrine Browne and Katherine Stewart-Jones excluded from the national team

Ski de fond: Cendrine Browne et Katherine Stewart-Jones exclues de l’équipe nationale

Ski de fond: Cendrine Browne et Katherine Stewart-Jones exclues de l’équipe nationale

Cendrine Browne in Quebec city in 2018


6 may 2020

Updated may 7, 2020 at 0h39


Cross-country skiing: Cendrine Browne and Katherine Stewart-Jones excluded from the national team


The casting machines quebec Cendrine Browne and Katherine Stewart-Jones have obtained the best results of their career in the world Cup last year. However, we do not see in the national team at the beginning of the next season of the world Cup.

Last Friday, Nordiq Canada has announced the composition of national teams 2020-2021. The organization has made the wager of bet on the younger athletes. Browne feared the decision last month by mentioning the limited budgets of the national organization.

Cendrine Browne agrees : she has not responded to the criteria of the federation that had been established last year. The melter 26 year old finished the season with 8 points at the world Cup and it had to be 22 for all athletes born before 1996, according to the national criteria. What frustrated her is that she was deprived of the departures of the stages of Quebec, Minneapolis, and Canmore, six races in total, which were cancelled due to the pandemic.

Katherine Stewart-Jones (25 years) and Alberta’s Maya MacIsaac-Jones (24 years) end up in the same situation that the Olympian Games of Pyeongchang with respectively 6 and 7 points.

Sportcom has asked Nordiq Canada if the organization had taken account of the cancellation of the last six races of the season in his national team selection. The federation confirmed that it held to the original criteria. “We have ambitious goals to be a part of the six best nations in cross-country skiing, women and men, in the world rankings in 2026 and to win two medals at the Games in 2026,” said the director-general of Nordiq Canada, Shane Pearsall, in a written statement.

“The achievement of these goals of high performance is not without difficult choices to make, starting with the establishment of selection criteria developed to assist the community to achieve these common objectives”, he added. “The Committee high-performance is understood not to adjust the original criteria.”

Three Quebecers born after 1996 have earned their place in the national senior team development : Philippe Boucher (age 23, Lévis), thanks to its top 12 at the world championships under 23 years, as well as Antoine Cyr (21 years old, Gatineau) and Laura Leclair (23 years old, Chelsea), who both finished first in the national ranking of the distance events.

The criteria, yes, but…

Louis Bouchard, coach of Cendrine Browne at the Centre national Pierre-Harvey, acknowledges that Nordiq Canada has met its criteria by adding that the current situation is exceptional, however. “Usually, the best Canadian on the canadian team. At the time you write the criteria you have in mind that this will be a full season. Here, 20 % of the season has been lost. Then, the question is : is this that one considers this situation [the pandemic] as being exceptional? For 99% of organizations, companies and SMES, it is yes. Them, they have made the choice not to consider it”

Stewart-Jones, who celebrated his 25th birthday on Tuesday, has preferred to limit his comments. “I had my best season to life, then it is sure that this is disappointing”, she mentioned. The best result of the melter to Chelsea last winter has been a 29th-place in the cumulative ranking of the Tour of Scandinavia. In this tour, she was ranked three times in the first 35 in this competition of six stages.

The former coach of Alex Harvey recalls that Cendrine Browne is a latecomer in the international circuit last season because of a concussion that has sidelined during the fall. Even if she was far away on the starting line to the tests of group departures because of her world ranking, she was able to get very good results.

“If it was part of the 30th, which was the average value this year, it is sure that she would have been able to make a top 15. Our girls have made good. It’s been about 10 years that we haven’t seen four Canadian women in world Cup points [top 30]. It is therefore extremely positive for us! The girls were 25-26 years old, and this is a good window for them to still give a 4 or 5 years in the sport. They have a maturity to go in the top 10 and top 15.”

Last year, no man retained in the team next year has achieved a top 30 (individual) in world Cup. Browne has made an appeal against the federation last year and it has been dismissed. It will not return to the load this spring. “It is so much negative energy and that is wasted that I’d rather continue on my success. It’s not worth the trouble”, ahead of the one for which the best results in world Cups have been the 25th, and 29th places.

“I love my sport and I’ve seen what I was capable of doing on the international scene. This is what motivates me. If they do not want to believe in me, the ski community and I will believe in myself. What motivates me, what are the next olympic Games.”

Le Soleil

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