Thomsen, Pridy & Pridy Reach Podium in Tough Apex GMC Downhill Race

Article #1832
Published By: Kathy Stahr

January 25, 2010

Ben Thomsen wins men’s downhill at GMC Cup

APEX MOUNTAIN, B.C. – Ben Thomsen of Invermere, B.C., won the gold medal in the men’s downhill on Monday to open the second stop on the GMC Cup alpine skiing circuit.

Snowy weather cancelled Sunday’s men’s and women’s downhill and Monday’s women’s downhill.

Thomsen, last year’s overall Western champ on the circuit, took the race in one minute and 19.22 seconds with Conrad Pridy (BC Ski Team/WMSC), B.C., second in 1:19.37 and his younger brother Morgan Pridy (BC Ski Team/WMSC) third in 1:20.64.

“I was little bit stressed before the race but I managed to shake it all off,” said Thomsen, who won three races on the circuit last season. “I was the first one down and I was worried about the amount of snow on the course but they managed to get it all off and it worked out for me. My goal coming in here was to win.”

Another factor the skiers had to deal with was the fog.

“The fog stuck to your goggles and it was a distraction” said Conrad Pridy. “You had to think ahead a bit more. It was really important today to have done a good course inspection. I was pretty happy to come second after having two slow training runs.”

The younger Pridy was happy to finish.

“I just wanted to make sure I stuck to my plan under those conditions,” he said. “I ran the course as inspected. It’s good to get on the podium, I had been in sort of slump lately. My lines and approach have not been up to par.”

The series is the brain-child of Olympic champion Nancy Greene Raine, who approached GMC more than four decades ago with the concept of creating a strong domestic ski racing series for up-and-coming Canadian alpine racers.

GMC has a rich history as a benefactor to communities and to amateur support. Thus, the original series was launched, developing some of Canada’s best alpine racers including Kathy Kreiner, Gerry Sorensen, Laurie Graham, Karen Percy, and the Crazy Canucks.

Several current members of Canada’s Alpine Ski Team are also GMC Cup alumni including past GMC Cup overall winners Michael Janyk (Whistler, BC) (2004), Brigitte Acton (Mont-Tremblant, QC) (2002, 2003), Shona Rubens (Canmore, AB) (2005), Marie-Michèle Gagnon (Lac-Etchemin, QC) (2007) and Erin Mielzynski (Guelph, ON) (2008).

Manuel Osborne-Paradis (Vancouver, BC) and John Kucera (Calgary, AB) are two Canadian World Cup winners who are also alumni of the program.

Last season’s Coupe GMC Cup winners were Ashley-Kate Durham (Montreal, QC) and Benjamin Thomsen (Invermere, BC).

Mike Culver and Diane Culver of Montreal were the circuit’s first overall champions in 1969. Other overall champions from Quebec were Diane Pratte (mother of CAST member Brigitte Acton) and Denise Crichton (1970); Karen Cloutier and Arthur Bourbeau (1972); Yvon Blackburn (1974); Daniel Bergeron (1975), Raymond Pratte (1976); Lynn Lacasse, Paul Boivin (1980).

Be sure to also check out the Coupe GMC Cup website ( which features new Canadian Alpine Ski Team bios, videos from Erik Guay (Mont-Tremblant, QC), Janyk, Kucera and Osborne-Paradis as well as other exciting new features.

Competition continues Tuesday.

Monday’s leading downhill results at the GMC Cup alpine skiing competition at Apex Mountain, B.C.

Men : 1. Benjamin Thomsen, Invermere, B.C., 1:19.22; 2. ; 2. Conrad Pridy , Whistler, B.C., 1:19.37; 3. Morgan Pridy, Whistler, 1:20.64 ; 4. Mathieu Leduc, Comox, B.C., 1:20.82; 5. Jorge Mandru, Chile, 1:20.83; 6. Jeffrey Bell, Calgary, 1:21.24; 7. Jack Evans, Britain, 1:21.86; 8. Geoffrey Massing, Edmonton, 1:22.14; 9. Daniel Kwong, Whistler, 1:22.49; 10, Alec Jones, U.S., 1:22.71.

J1 Podium
BELL Jeffrey  1993 First J1
KWONG Daniel  1993
 Second J1
JONES Alec  1994 Third J1

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