A cross-country skiing brother-sister act were golden at the Canada Winter Games on Thursday.
Jasmine Drolet won the women’s 10-km classic mass start event and less than an hour later her brother Rémi led the field in the men’s 15-km classic mass start event at River Bend Recreation Area.
Team Alberta was also represented on the podium with Canmore’s Sam Hendry picking up a bronze medal.
Jasmine, who is from Rossland, B.C., said classic skiing is one of her strengths.
She was able to tackle the hills with good form and was confident that she could catch up to those ahead of her.
A vocal crowd of spectators, who cheered and rang cow bells, as each skier came by were a big help, she said. Besides their infectious enthusiasm, they kept her up to speed on how far behind the other skiers were.
“It just boosts your morale a lot and helps you to keep going,” said Drolet.
She heard that her brother was doing well in his race but didn’t see the finish.
“I knew he could do it. He’s done it before,” she said. “I was super happy when I heard.”
Team Quebec’s Laura Leclair, of Gatineau, added a silver to the bronze and gold she has already won at the Games. Finishing third was Natalie Hynes, from Whitehorse, Yukon.
Top Alberta finisher was fifth-place finisher Anna Pryce, followed by Isobel Hendry in sixth; Althea Brolsma (17th) and Maya Fish (19th).
Team Alberta’s Hendry was part of a breakaway group of three early in the men’s 15-km race.
“I hung on to them for the first two laps, then they really started to pickup the pace and I was kind of in that no man’s land between the front group and the next group for the second half of the race.
“But I was able to hang on.”
Hendry said the third lap was the hardest as a group of six other skiers continued to try to catch up.
“I was really suffering and I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to do it. But by the time I got to the fourth, I knew I had enough energy to hold them off.”
Antoine Cyr, of Gatineau, Quebec, took silver.
Team Alberta’s Reed Godfrey finished 11th, followed by Luke Fricker (18th), Rhys James (20th) and Logan Lumby (22nd).