A young Yukon freestyle skier is soaring to new heights.
Mavik MacKinnon, 11, recently returned from the B.C. Freestyle Championships with three silver medals in hand – one from each of the three events he competed in.
MacKinnon competed in Whistler from April 8 to 10 under the Freestyle Whistler Club affiliation. As his dad Sean explained, while Mavik is a proud Yukoner and has been part of Yukon Freestyle Ski Association programs previously, he isn’t in one this winter, so he competed under the Whistler club affiliation.
At the championships, MacKinnon competed in the slopestyle, moguls and big air events. In slopestyle and moguls he was in the U12 category with about 30 other athletes representing ski clubs from Vancouver, Mount Washington, Big White, Panorama, Sun Peaks, Apex as well as Whistler and other hills from British Columbia. Meanwhile, in the big air event, Mavik competed in the boys category which included a total of 63 skiers between the ages of 10 and 14.
In an April 18 interview, Mavik said he went to B.C. championships three years ago and decided he wanted to return with the opportunity coming up this year.
“It was pretty fun,” he said of his first experience in the 2018/2019 ski season, adding he went into this year hoping to improve on his results from last time when he placed fourth in moguls and 10th in slopestyle. While Mavik went into the competition with a goal of improving over last time, he said he wasn’t sure what the competition would be like.
Sean described the U12 competition as “fierce,” noting many in the group were scoring higher than the U14 competitors.
Despite the stiff competition, Mavik achieved just what he had set out to do.
Mavik said that while he had a good sense he had done well in the slopestyle event when he reached the end of his run, he wasn’t too sure about the moguls and big air until the final results were in.
“I was pretty happy and surprised,” he said about taking silver in each.
In slopestyle, he brought home the silver with a score of 91. His closest competitors were both from the Silver Star club with gold medal winner Roxton Dorward finishing with a score of 94.6, while bronze medalist William Hayes finished with 89.6. Dorward took the top spot in each of the three events.
Mavik finished moguls with a score of 73.3, while Dorward came in with a score of 80, and James Corrigan of Mount Washington took bronze with a score of 61.3.
In big air, Mavik’s silver finish in the boys category came with a score of 95.3, compared to 96 for Dorward. Fergus Hayes of Silver Star took the bronze with a score of 90 in the event.
Mavik credits a Freestyle Yukon Christmas break day camp he went at Mount Sima in developing his love of freestyle skiing.
Having first hit the slopes at just a year and a half old with his family, Mavik was no stranger to Sima’s terrain when he took part in the camp.
“I’ve always liked to hit jumps,” he said, noting the camp was really “where it all started” for him pursuing more freestyle skiing.
He’s since taken in some Freestyle Yukon programs (which saw him attend his first B.C. championships) since then along with learning on his own both at Sima and on neighbourhood hills around Whitehorse, particularly when Sima had to shut in 2020 due to COVID-19.
After achieving his goal for the BC championships, Mavik is enjoying spending his free time at Sima before the season comes to an end.
After that, he said he’ll likely take some time over the summer to think about his goals for the 2022/2023 ski season.
Contact Stephanie Waddell at firstname.lastname@example.org