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Imrie thrilled to don our colours

Fulfilled Oly dream officially sinks in

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 28/1/2010 (3489 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

IT was a formality. One of those smile-and-wave ceremonies every accomplished athlete is obligated to take part in and, depending on their mood, endure.

Megan Imrie already knew she was going to the Olympics, even as far back as this time last year. After all, the 22-year-old Falcon Lake product has been on Canada's national biathlon team for three years and competing on the world stage all over the northern hemisphere.

Funny, then, how the formality of being officially named to the Olympic team on Thursday during a media event in Canmore, Alta., gobbled her up and reminded her of all the hours on the ski trails and on the shooting range.

All the sweat, all that sacrifice came back to her the minute she was handed her Olympic team uniform.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 28/1/2010 (3489 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

IT was a formality. One of those smile-and-wave ceremonies every accomplished athlete is obligated to take part in and, depending on their mood, endure.

Megan Imrie already knew she was going to the Olympics, even as far back as this time last year. After all, the 22-year-old Falcon Lake product has been on Canada's national biathlon team for three years and competing on the world stage all over the northern hemisphere.

Funny, then, how the formality of being officially named to the Olympic team on Thursday during a media event in Canmore, Alta., gobbled her up and reminded her of all the hours on the ski trails and on the shooting range.

All the sweat, all that sacrifice came back to her the minute she was handed her Olympic team uniform.

"It was the official giving-of-the-jackets ceremony so I know have the official 'CANADA' logo on my back right now," said Imrie in a telephone interview from Canmore. "And it's pretty exciting.

"It's also great because after training today I was given my jacket alongside two of my teammates who are also two of my best friends (Zina Kocher and Rosanna Crawford). It just makes it that much more special.

"I've been home for just five days before we're back on the road for almost a month and it's given me a chance to reflect and realize how much I've enjoyed the journey of getting here," Imrie added.

"The Games are going to unfold, I'm sure, with blazing speed and they're going to be over before I know it. So, I'm really trying to focus on slowing things down and loving every minute of the lead-up and the hype."

Many of Canada's Olympic athletes told the same tale, be they from the biathlon team announced Thursday, the bobsleigh and skeleton squads introduced Wednesday or the speedskaters, hockey players and freestyle jumpers before that.

Often they get so caught up in the here and now and their intense training they forget about the magnitude of the accomplishment. And the fact these Olympics will take place on home soil — a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity — makes a moment like being named to the national squad and being handed a jacket with 'CANADA' stitched on the back that much more memorable.

Nice moment

"It's truly a nice moment," Imrie said. "That's why I'm doing it. I'm not going through training every day for eight years just to get to one race day at the Olympics. You've got to love what you're doing and be passionate about it and that's what I've been trying to do."

Imrie is part of one of the youngest biathlon teams that will compete in Whistler as Canada looks to be competitive now and four years down the road in Sochi, Russia.

She is joined by the veteran Kocher, who competed in Turin and two other Olympic rookies in Megan Tandy and Crawford. The men's four-member squad includes Jean-Philippe Le Guellec, Robin Clegg, Marc-André Bédard and Brendan Green.

Canada's team will now head to Mt. Washington, B.C. on Monday for a pre-Olympics training camp and begin their Olympics on Feb. 13.

ed.tait@freepress.mb.ca

 

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