2015/2015 National Team Announcement

The SSA Cross Country Committee is pleased to announce the official National Teams for 2015/2016. A total of 23 athletes have have accepted invitations to join the World Cup, Continental Cup, U23 and Junior Teams. Major competitions in the coming season include the 2015/2016 World Cup series, the 2016 World Junior/U23 Championship in Romania, and the 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games in Norway.

Jess & Phil WUWG 2015 crop

Jessica Yeaton and Phillip Bellingham  both finished 8th at the 2015 WUWG.

World Cup Team
– Phillip Bellingham, 24 (VIC, Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club)
– Callum Watson, 26 (NSW, Cooma Ski Club)
– Jessica Yeaton, 24 (WA, APU Ski Club)

Continental Cup Team
– Paul Kovacs, 25 (VIC, Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club)
– Aimee Watson, 28 (NSW, Cooma Ski Club)

U23 Team
– Jackson Bursill, 22 (NSW, NSWXC)
– Nick Montgomery, 22 (VIC, Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club)
– Alasdair Tutt, 22 (ACT, Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club)
– Casey Wright, 20 (VIC, Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club)

Junior Team
– Stella Ajani, 18 (VIC, Team Ivanhoe)
– Lilly Boland, 16 (NSW, Cooma Ski Club)
– Matthew Bull, 17 (NSW, NSWXC)
– Liam Burton, 17 (ACT, Cooma Ski Club)
– Finlay Clarke, 17, (VIC, Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club)
– Seve de Campo, 17 (VIC, Ski Club of Victoria)
– Nelle Forster-Berghuis, 16 (ACT, ACTXC)
– Gabrielle Hawkins, 17 (NSW, NSWXC)
– Ella Jackson, 18 (VIC, Victorian Junior Squad)
– Damon Morton, 19 (VIC)
– Darcie Morton, 15 (VIC, Livigno Sports Club)
– Katerina Paul, 19 (VIC, Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club)
– Hamish Roberts, 19 (ACT, NSWXC/ACTXC)
– Abe Wright, 19 (VIC, Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club)

Three athletes are on the World Cup Team, with Callum Watson joining the provisionally named athletes Phillip Bellingham and Jessica Yeaton. Bellingham will compete in the most World Cups this winter, targeting Freestyle Sprints with the aim of breaking into the top 30 and racing in the finals. Yeaton will race predominantly on the US SuperTour, building towards the Canadian World Cup Tour in March.  Watson will race in Sweden in the first half of the season before targeting World Cups in February then the Canadian World Cup Tour.

Watson withdrew from a number of races in the 2014-2015 season while on the come-back from a punctured lung in 2014. In selecting him back into the World Cup Team the Selection Committee considered Watson’s results during the 2015 Australian winter and were satisfied that he had returned to competing at the required performance level.

Some athletes on the Continental Cup and U23 Teams will also have the opportunity to start some World Cups, including Paul Kovacs who is on a similar schedule to Yeaton and aiming for the Canada Tour, and Jackson Bursill who will  join Bellingham for the Sprint and Team Sprint World Cup in Slovenia as part of his preparation for the 2016 World U23 Championship in Romania.

A record 14 athletes are on the Australian Junior Team, headed up by Kat Paul who competed at the 2015 World Junior Championship and is already A-qualified for the 2016 World Junior Championship in Romania. A number of other juniors are B-qualified, with more opportunities to qualify up until February 7.  From within the Junior Team under 18 athletes Lilly Boland and Liam Burton are nominated to represent Australia at the Winter Youth Olympic Games in Norway in February.

Unfortunately junior Abe Wright who was already B-qualified for Romania will be unable to attend due to a recent mountain biking accident that saw him break both wrists and a collarbone. Wright’s recovery plan will see him building back towards the 2016 Australian winter.

The first event of the 2015/2016 season for Australians is this weekend November 21/22, where Bellingham will race in the Swedish season opener in Bruksvallarna. The Junior Team has one last dryland training camp coming up at the Falls Creek National Training Centre in December, with the official junior tour beginning in early January.

Progress throughout the international season can be followed on the AUSXC website and also via team/athlete Twitter updates and athlete blogs.  Donations to the team can be made via the XC Towards 2018 campaign.

Discover XC – Boosting Participation

The Ski & Snowboard Australia Cross Country Committee is excited to announce the launch of Discover XC, an introductory web portal that aims to boost cross country skiing grassroots participation. The new website has been put together in partnership with Ski Cross Country Victoria and the Australian Sports Foundation’s Giving for Grassroots project.

Designed to be mobile/tablet friendly, Discover XC showcases the many different faces of the sport and provides practical information and tips for beginners of all ages. Whether people might be interested in finding a healthy recreational alternative, keeping fit during winter, discovering snow-fun for the whole family, exploring the alpine back-country, seeking an adrenaline rush or taking up ski racing, Discover XC and cross country skiing has something for everyone.

Cover Page scroll 1

“It can be very difficult to get started in the sport without an inside connection,” said Kate Prest, one of the key drivers of the project from Camberwell in Melbourne. “A cousin introduced me to the sport as a teenager, I got my family into it and now we’re all hooked. With Discover XC we are trying to break down participation barriers and create easier pathways into the sport.”

Discover scroll 2

The next phase of the Discover XC project focuses on promotion in schools, using a mobile unit to travel around providing information on how to get started and demonstrating the sport using rollerskis. Also in the wings is an overhaul of this AUSXC.com website to provide more information on Australian cross country ski racing.

www.discoverxcski.com is now live for people to browse. For more information on getting started in the sport…click on the Get Started section!




The Descent of Winter

Originally posted on Half an Adventure:

Normally people think of the arrival of winter as a question of time: you just watch the days tick over as it gets colder and colder until we get to a point where we decide it’s cold enough to be winter, or we just wait for a specific date. Others will think of it geographically: it may already be wintry close to the north/south pole, and you wait for the northward/southward march of the next season. Here in the Allgäu, the season changes are particularly visible, especially if you look up and observe small changes in the high mountains. Winter starts up on the peaks, and slowly extends down to the valley. Let me elaborate, and tell a bit about my training in the last seven weeks.

High summer

I arrived in Southern Germany on August 26th, to a magnificent view of green mountains, green valleys and blue…

View original 1,311 more words

Provisional National Teams for 2015-2016

The provisional Cross Country Skiing National Teams for 2015-2016 have been released by SSA XC, the cross country committee of Ski & Snowboard Australia.

Phillip Bellingham and Jessica Yeaton are the sole two athletes invited to the World Cup Team based on their results over the past twelve months, with Callum Watson, Aimee Watson, and Paul Kovacs invited to join the Continental Cup Team. In addition four U23 athletes and fourteen Junior athletes will be receiving National Team invitations. Athletes can move up teams during the northern hemisphere winter based on their performances in FIS competition.

Bellingham and Yeaton had breakthrough results at the 2015 World Universiade Winter Games in Slovakia, where they both placed 8th in the Sprint finals. Bellingham was the most consistent Australian performer on the cross country skiing World Cup for the third season in a row, while Yeaton also had stand-out performances at the US Championships in January.

Jessica Yeaton

Jessica Yeaton

Phillip Bellingham

Phillip Bellingham

Continue reading

AUSXC Cocktail Night, Melbourne, Friday October 16

On Friday October 16 the Ski & Snowboard Australia Cross Country Ski Team is putting on an end-of-season Cocktail Night in Melbourne. The occasion is a great opportunity for athletes, coaches, officials, parents and general ski enthusiasts to discuss and celebrate the year together without wearing lycra, hats or glasses, and also doubles as a major fundraiser for the XC Towards 2018 project.

2015 Cocktail Party flier front

Hosted by the Montgomery/Milne family, the evening kicks off at 7:00pm with drinks and finger-food and features a silent auction running in the background throughout the night. Athletes are currently working on a video/photo presentation to show what 2015 was all about, and a few short speeches will also include an overview of the plans for the 2015/2016 international season. All funds raised from the evening go towards athlete international expenses, including for World Cup, the 2016 World Junior/U23 Championship in Romania, the 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games in Norway and the inaugural World Cup Tour of Canada. In the past two years XC Towards 2018 has raised over $25K/year for athlete expenses, with the two major contributions coming from this Cocktail event and the Sundeck Cup at Perisher.

Skiers past and present are all welcome. If you can’t make it on the night, tax deductible donations are also possible via the Australian Sports Foundation XC Towards 2018 project page.

When: Friday, October 16, 7:00pm
Where: 28 Glassford St, Armadale, 3143
Tickets: $45/head, book online at www.trybooking.com/IUQH
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/events/1483786391935048/

2015 Cocktail Party flier back

Skike Australia Victorian Ski Chase Prize Winners

Last night the Ski Chase prizes were drawn.  Our winners are:
  • Stephen McDowell – v07plus Skikes, thanks to Skike Australia – skike.com.au
  • Tony Pammer – $100 Rochford Winery voucher, thanks to Rochford Wines in Healesville – rochfordwines.com.au
  • Belinda Phillips – $100 Rochford Winery voucher
  • Emma Prest – $200 cash, thanks to Melbourne Nordic Ski Club
  • Grigorii Kazantcev – $200 cash, thanks to Melbourne Nordic Ski Club
  • Harri  Silvester – $200 cash, thanks to anonymous donors
  • Lola Timewell – $200 cash, thanks to anonymous donors
We also have prizes for winners of the outright competition, and first placed U23 skiers.
First place outright:
  • Penny Grose – $100 Rochford Winery voucher, thanks to Rochford Wines in Healesville
  • Ben Derrick – $100 Rochford Winery voucher
First place U23:
  • Leila Pammer – $300 cash, thanks to Skike Force
  • Tommi Silvester – $300 cash, thanks to Skike Force
Winners will be contacted by e-mail to arrange the prize transfer.
Many thanks to everyone who took part in the competition, to our very generous sponsors, and the 11 people who helped with the draw last night.

Paddy Pallin Junior 2015

Snow, sunshine and smiles were the order of the day for the Paddy Pallin Junior cross country ski event held on Saturday 5 September 2015. Having been postponed from the beginning of the July school holidays due to a lack of snow, the weather gods certainly turned on a show and there was plenty of snow and sunshine to go around.


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Thirty one participants, ranging in age from 2 years to 16 years, competed over varying distances from 50 metres to three kilometres, with multiple laps on a one kilometre loop ensuring excellent view points for spectators. As the oldest cross country ski event still being held in Australia, it was wonderful to see a broad spectrum of abilities and ages, including a number of participants who are the second generation of previous Paddy Pallin junior competitors. Continue reading


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