Cycling Canada has announced the athletes that will be part of its MTB NextGen program for 2018, including riders ranging from across the country, B.C. to Nova Scotia. The NextGen program is designed to provide athletes with the support needed to move seamlessly into the elite ranks and deliver international podium performances.
For 2018, the squad will consist of returning athletes Sean Fincham of Squamish, B.C. and Soren Meeuwisse of Oro Medonte, Ont. They will be joined by new athletes Dana Gilligan, also of Oro Medonte, and Mackenzie Myatt of Musquodoboit Harbour, N.S. All athletes will work with Mountain Bike NextGen Coach, Jeff Ain. In addition to the core group of four program athletes, there is a pool of eleven associate athletes who will be able to access training opportunities based on project capacity and availability.
The MTB NextGen Daily Training Environment Program is based in Victoria, B.C., with the training environment moving as required throughout the year. Support includes Daily Training Environment (DTE) services, which cover personalized and periodized coaching and integrated support services. The program is designed to deliver the support athletes need to be selected into national program projects and deliver international level performances within the national program. Program services are based out of Victoria, BC, with the training environment moving as required throughout the year. Support services are provided through the Canadian Sport Institute Pacific in Victoria, B.C.
“We have an exceptional group of eager and hard-working athletes,” said Mountain Bike NextGen Coach, Jeff Ain. “The work is well underway, and things are looking bright for the future of mountain bike in Canada. I am very fortunate to work every day with this group, as well as the exceptional support network of service providers who help underpin the program.”
Graduated NextGen athletes have represented Canada at multiple international events, including World Cups, world championships and Enduro World Series events. Past athletes include Haley Smith (Uxbridge, Ont.) who placed 16th at Cairns world championships in XCO, Rhys Verner (Squamish, B.C.) who finished off 2017 by winning the U21 category at EWS Finale Ligure, and Canada Summer Games XC gold medalist, Felixe Burke (Mont Tremblant, Que.)
For more information, see Cycling Canada’s full press release