Alberta’s Rising Cross Country Skiing Star Continues Family Legacy – Calgary | The Canadian News

The son of two Olympic cross-country skiers and the nephew of Canada’s most decorated winter Paralympian continues the family legacy.

At first, Robin McKeever did his best to prevent his son Xavier McKeever from following him on his ski slopes.

“I did my best to put Xav in any sport except cross-country skiing,” admitted McKeever. “I wanted him to be able to choose this sport, if it was his choice, instead of being forced to play it because it was just the life he was born into.”

Read more:

Beginner cross-country ski trails near Calgary

Xavier did quite well in all the sports he tried, as the summers were filled with soccer and mountain biking, while the winters were filled with alpine skiing, hockey, and speed skating.

The story continues below the ad.

But there was nothing to separate him from his cross country boards.

“It was hectic,” the 18-year-old recalled. “I loved being on my skis and the feeling of sliding on snow.

“When I was younger, it was mostly about having fun and being outdoors, and now it’s focused because it’s my life and my job in a way.”

Click to play video: 'Skiing continues to be popular in Alberta as COVID-19 pandemic continues'

Skiing remains popular in Alberta as COVID-19 pandemic continues

Skiing Remains Popular in Alberta As COVID-19 Pandemic Continues – Oct 27, 2021

McKeever is a name synonymous with the sport in his hometown of Canmore.

His parents are Olympic cross-country skiers Robin McKeever and Milaine Thériault and his uncle is Paralympic Brian McKeever.

“He has some of the laid-back personality that I had, and his mother’s drive,” Robin said. “She was an organized and dedicated athlete in everything she did. He has a little bit of that to keep his balance so he will train extremely hard and still be relaxed enough in races not to let the pressure get to him. “

The story continues below the ad.

As a child, Xavier didn’t quite understand his family’s Nordic achievements until he saw Robin and Brian capture three gold medals at the 2010 Vancouver games.

Now Xavier is trying to carve out his own legacy on the slopes.

“Personally, I don’t feel any pressure for that legacy. I’m only here to create my own path and live my own career, so I mainly focus on that.

“It is always good to have parents who have so much experience in sports because they can give me a lot of knowledge about different things.”

Click to play video: 'Alberta Man Behind Indigenous-Inspired Team Canada Curling Jerseys'

Alberta man behind Indigenous-inspired Team Canada curling jerseys

Alberta man behind Indigenous-inspired Team Canada curling jerseys

Xavier is now one of the most promising young stars in North America.

The story continues below the ad.

Along with teammate Albertan Tom Stephen, Remi Drolet of British Columbia and Olivier Léveillé of Quebec, he helped Canada win their first relay medal, a silver, no less, at the World Junior Championships in 2020.

“When it happened, it didn’t even feel real,” Xavier recalled. “I was like, ‘Somebody pinch me now, this is crazy.’ But I think the most important part of that moment is that it showed that we are capable of competing at the highest level in cross country. “

Then, in a full circle moment, Xavier captured a gold hat trick of his own at the Gaellivare Ski Festival in Sweden over the weekend.

The story continues below the ad.

His uncle was available to help him prepare for each of his careers.

“This is a generation that is faster than any of us at that age,” said Brian McKeever, who is also preparing for his last Paralympic Games.

“I will never be as fast as these youngsters again, and that’s great! That’s the most exciting thing, these kids are all faster than me and they have a career and a life ahead of them. “

Read more:

Canadian Paralympic team returns home with record medals

Because he is still a junior, Xavier does not plan to be part of Canada’s Beijing Olympic team, but will compete in the Olympic trials in Canmore later this winter.

McKeever has set his sights on the 2026 games and ultimately an Olympic medal of his own.

The story continues below the ad.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Leave a Comment