The Canada Winter Games are continuing this week in Prince George, B.C., and Sylvan Lake’s very own 17-year-old cross-country skier Anna Zimmerman is competing with her team of five against 50 other girls, all of whom are under 23-years-old, to become Canada’s best skiers.
Zimmerman has been skiing since she was four years old, and started racing around the age of 12.
“It’s a bit intimidating, because some of the girls are two or even five years older than myself,” Zimmerman said. “At the same time, I am really excited about it, and I am really excited to compete against Canada’s best.”
Zimmerman is participating in four different races this week, and hopes to place well. Perhaps more importantly, however, she hopes the event will help her become a better skier.
“I am mainly hoping to have fun and enjoy this amazing experience,” she said. “But I am hoping to get into the top three for the relay.”
Zimmerman has competed at nationals, which she said was one of her biggest races. Aside from that, most of her races take place across Alberta.
She qualified for the competition in Prince George after her father signed her up for Canada Winter Games trials, where she raced her best and earned fifth place. That qualified her for team Alberta, and also left her somewhat surprised.
“The girls are really fast, and even if I did qualify they would probably choose someone older,” Zimmerman said. “But they chose me.”
Zimmerman, a homeschool student, is currently finishing her high school education. When she isn’t studying, she practices skiing with the Red Deer Nordic Ski Community.
“I really enjoy competing and being with other skiers.” she said. “I enjoy the communities I get to be with and am surrounded by.”