19-year-old Kelowna skier achieves B.C. best at World Juniors
Gareth Williams placed 20th in the 10 km freestyle race on Wednesday
19-year-old Gareth Williams competed on Wednesday at the Nordic Junior World Championships in Park City, Utah. (flyingpointroad.com)
A 19-year-old cross country skier from the Okanagan is preparing to compete at the Nordic Junior World Championships in Park City, Utah Friday after achieving a B.C. best earlier this week.
On Wednesday, Kelowna's Gareth Williams came in 20th in the 10 km freestyle race — the best result a B.C. skier has ever posted in that event at the junior championship. Williams was also the only Canadian, man or woman, to crack the top 30.
"For B.C. skiers, that's a really good result," said Adam Elliot, Williams's coach at the Telemark Nordic Club in West Kelowna.
"To see him up with the best in the world, it's pretty exciting."
First time at the World Juniours
Not getting too excited is part of the challenge for Williams who's attending his first international competition.
"With Gareth, he kind of gets over-activated so my focus is on reminding him it's just like any other race he does," said Elliot.
"Just focus on doing everything right, the process of getting the most out of himself. When he does that, he skis very well."
Russian skiers swept the podium Wednesday, earning gold, silver and bronze in the 10 km freestyle event.
Williams will compete in a skiathlon event on Friday.