Three athletes to represent Cariboo at BC Winter Games

Three Cariboo athletes will join more than 1,700 participants next month at the Penticton 2016 BC Winter Games.

Three Cariboo athletes will join more than 1,700 participants next month at the Penticton 2016 BC Winter Games.

The Games, which showcase B.C.’s best emerging high performance talents in a celebration of sport and community, run Feb. 25-28.

Williams Lake’s Warren Scrooby (alpine skiing), Cole Turner (cross country skiing), and 150 Mile House’s Georgia DiMarco (judo) will represent the Cariboo-North East Zone — one of eight zones throughout the province — at the event.

The 1,225 competing athletes are from every corner of the province and have trained to earn a place to represent their zone at the Games.

Competing in 17 different sports, the athletes are an average of 14 years old and, for most, this will be their first experience at a multi-sports Games. Special Olympians will compete in basketball and figure skating and athletes with a disability will compete in wheelchair basketball and para cross country skiing.

The athletes will be supported by 333 coaches and 180 officials who have earned their certification in order to provide the best knowledge and expertise to the athletes and the competition.

Volunteers in Penticton have been preparing for the past 18 months to host the Games — the fourth time the city has done so. There will be more than 1,800 volunteers working to ensure participants have exceptional competition and a first-rate experience with opening and closing ceremonies, special events and wonderful hospitality.

“Penticton is where the BC Games began in 1978 and we are so pleased to be back and benefiting from the history of sport and event hosting in this community,” said Kelly Mann, president and CEO of the BC Games Society.

“The athletes, coaches and officials coming to these BC Winter Games are taking their first step towards future national and international level competitions and the expertise of the volunteers will make a mark on their journey.”

The BC Winter Games has been the starting point for many athletes who have gone on to higher levels of sport.

More than 50 per cent of Team BC athletes at the 2015 Canada Winter Games were BC Games alumni.

Eighteen alumni were part of Team Canada at the 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Games including Kelowna’s Kelsey Serwa (ski cross), Summerland’s Justin Kripps (bobsleigh) and Josh Dueck of Vernon (para alpine).

For more information about the BC Winter Games please visit bcgames.org.