Concept of the Canmore 2017 Nationals – Relay Cross

This is an introduction to a fun and very challenging yet safe alternative to the team sprints.

Here is a link to a course that was run in Lillehammer at the 2016 Youth Olympics. It was a great success and was very well received by both spectators and athletes alike:

Canmore Relay-Cross Obstacles descriptions.


We will have both uphill slaloms and downhill slaloms. They are positioned in places that are safe and yet still challenging at higher speeds. We will have about 5-6 gates for each.


The rollers on the first lap (R1) will be about 1 meter high and there will be 3-4 of them spaced over 30-40 meters. They will offer a change in rhythm as they will be on flat sections forcing athletes to accelerate into them. The rollers on the 2nd lap (R2) will be a bit past a long downhill, there will be 5-6 of them over 30-40 meters and standing about 70cm high.

The Drops:

The drops are a sudden dip/drop from a height of 30-40cm. Each lap will feature one of these following the crest of a climb. Strong skiers will be able to take a bit of air. The feature will be built over the whole width of the trail and be followed by a downhill.

Double Poling:

Each lap will feature a 25m of flat to slightly uphill section with tracks for double poling.


We also have a unique figure on the course we call the escargot where skiers follow an inwards spiral which eventually forces skiers to spiral back out. This type of feature is sometimes used in cyclo-cross races. It is a fun and very spectator friendly addition!

The scheduling of the Relay Cross

This relay cross course will be set up the day before the race only. It will be new to all competitors, locals as well as visitors alike to ensure no advantages of some over others.

Unlike the format used at the 2 person relay cross during the 2016 Youth Olympics (see link above) it will be an individual start every 30s. Once the first skier finishes his or her lap back at the stadium there will be a large relay/tag zone to send off the following team member after a compulsory body tap. Time penalties will be applied to missed slalom gates. The course we are using is wide and offers a lot of passing opportunities.

Chances to ski the obstacle course will happen on the Training Day only. No prior skiing of the course on race day in order to preserve the course quality and safety for the athletes. Furthermore this is a volunteer intensive course that needs time to prepare.