Cultus Lake’s Reece Howden competed in his first World Cup ski-cross event Jan. 20.
The 19 year old member of Canada’s national development team traveled to the Nakiska Ski Resort, which is located near Banff, Alberta.
Howden showed no nerves, producing a great first interval time.
He was 11th fastest in a field of 56 at the quarter mark of the course.
But the elements and his late start time conspired against him. Wearing bib No. 53, he was fourth from last to hit the course, and by the time he reached the back half of the run, sunshine and 52 previous competitors had turned the snow soft and slow.
He ended up 45th overall.
The top 32 qualified for finals.
Howden stayed where he was for two days of Noram (North American) races, competing against teammates from Canada and international foes from Japan, Bulgaria, Great Britain and the United States.
Howden was flawless, winning two gold medals.
He earned himself a trip to South Korea next month for the 2018 Winter Olympics, where he’ll act as a forerunner in ski cross.
Forerunners ski the course before competition starts to pack down fresh snow and make sure the course is ready.
Howden will head to Germany after the Olympics for two Europa Cup races.
Meanwhile, his brother Jesse is also up to big things.
The 17 year old has qualified for the World Junior Freeride skiing competition, a U-19 event that will be held in Austria in March. The top 30 15-18 year olds qualified for the event.
His second place finish in the Noram championships last spring at the Kirkwood Ski Resort in Lake Tahoe helped seal the deal, along with placing first overall in Canada.