Yukon skier heading to the 2022 Winter Olympics

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Whitehorse-born cross-country skier Dahria Beatty skis up a hill during training in Canmore, Alta. Beatty secured a spot on the Canadian Olympic team last weekend and will be heading to Beijing later this month. (Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press - image credit)
Whitehorse-born cross-country skier Dahria Beatty skis up a hill during training in Canmore, Alta. Beatty secured a spot on the Canadian Olympic team last weekend and will be heading to Beijing later this month. (Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press - image credit)

Whitehorse-born cross-country skier Dahria Beatty secured a spot on the Canadian Olympic team after finishing second during the Olympic trials in Canmore last weekend.

"To actually have that selection locked up is definitely a big relief. Now I can focus on doing everything possible to perform the best I can at the [Olympic] games," Beatty said.

It'll be the second time Beatty competes for Canada at the Olympics. She participated at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeonchang, South Korea.

Beatty came in second during the trials last weekend behind Katherine Stewart-Jones, who had already qualified for Team Canada during the World Cup this past December.

She said she knew she had to beat everyone but Stewart-Jones during the trials, "so, I just went out there and gave it everything I had and luckily that was enough and I was able to get 20 seconds ahead of the next competitor."

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

Although the Yukon skier managed to secure a spot in the upcoming team, she said she was feeling fatigue during the Olympic trials.

"This past week was definitely a stressful one, but I was happy to be able to bounce back and perform when I needed," said Beatty.

Alain Masson, head coach of the Yukon ski team who was coaching athletes at the ski trials, told CBC News he was content with Beatty's performance.

"I'm always really happy when the athletes can achieve their best at their most important races," he said.

A journey to the Olympics

Beatty started cross country skiing when she was three years-old with the Jackrabbits program in Whitehorse.

She started representing Canada internationally in 2009 where she competed in the first of her three world junior championships.

In 2015, she debuted at the U23 world championships. Two years later, she returned and placed 12th in the sprint. That year, she also teamed up with Cendrine Browne for a 13th place finish in the team sprint and anchored Canada to a 10th place in the 4 x 5 km relay. This was Canada's best result in the women's relay since 2001, according to Canada's Olympic website.

During her Olympic debut in 2018, when she was 24, Beatty raced in five events.

"I'm going to try to take what I learned last time, which is to stay in the moment and not think too far ahead as the games go on," she said.

The Associated Press - Kirsty Wigglesworth
The Associated Press - Kirsty Wigglesworth

Heading to Beijing this year has been on Beatty's mind for a long time.

"This is definitely something that's been circled on my calendar for many, many years," she said.

The Canadian team will be officially announced later today. Then they'll travel to Silver Star, B.C., for the training camp prior to departing to Beijing on Jan. 26, Beatty explained.

The Winter Olympic games begin on Feb. 4.

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