The Association de Ski Station du Quebec (ASSQ) and Ski Quebec Alpin (SQA) recently released their guideline for ski hill operations, as well as ski training and racing, and we are excited to see the Club will be skiing this year! There are still some unknowns as the guidelines are dependent on the Covid-19 alert level for our region (MRC La Vallée-de-la-Gatineau) and as a result our ability to train and race may vary over the course of the winter. With these guidelines released, the Outaouais Ski Zone is now preparing a race schedule, which should be released within the next several weeks. Please be patient as there is a fair amount of work that goes into planning the race schedule and coordinating dates with the various hill operators, as well as adjusting for any change in alert levels for not only our region, but of the other clubs in the OSZ. Once released, we will have a better idea of the add-on training costs and we will look to complete registration and finalize payments.

As mentioned in previous communications, please prepare yourselves for races to be on weekdays and expect a reduced schedule from previous years, particularly for U10 and U12 events. There is also a risk that races are cancelled on short notice, should either of our regions move back into a “red zone” in the winter (or remain in a red zone) according to the Province of Quebec.

Our club and Mont Ste. Marie are working together to ensure a safe yet fun environment for all who plan to use the hill this winter. It is very important to remember that there will be strict rules in place this winter regarding wearing a mask, maintaining safe distance and acting appropriately in the lodge, club buildings, the ski lines, the chair lift and on the hill. If our racers, coaches, or parents are seen to be violating these rules, Mont Ste. Marie could face large fines or possible closures. The club is committing to the hill that our members will act in a professional and mature manner and will follow all rules and guidelines. If any of our members cannot do so, they will face disciplinary action that could include suspension of their racing/training privileges. The guidelines from the SQA will be shared with all members over the course of the next few months. It is important that all rules and guidelines are followed. There will be zero tolerance for those who choose not to follow these rules. Safety is our primary concern.

This will be a ski year unlike any other. While we need all members to act with discipline and a high degree of maturity, we can also have fun. In fact, with many more dedicated training days and fewer skiers on the mountain, our head coaches believe that this could be the best year for skills development and it should translate into huge success for our racers and race club in the years ahead.

We have an opportunity to put Club MSM on the map for our world class training facility, our exceptional race community and for the conduct of our racers in a challenging environment. Please make us proud and make Club MSM the envy of Canada.