Skip to content

Kimberley’s Kalle Ericsson gets overall podium finish in debut World Cup season

Ericsson and guide Sierra Smith get fourth GS podium to finish season in third

Kimberley’s Kalle Ericsson, alongside his guide Sierra Smith, just wrapped up his debut season on the Para Alpine World Cup circuit, pulling off two more podium finishes and ending up claiming third place overall for the entire season.

Ericsson said this “by far” surpassed his expectations for his rookie World Cup season.

“My goals for the season were to get at least a top five finish,” Ericsson said. “Coming into the World Cup season at such a late start, it was just like okay we’re going to go in, have some fun and see what we can do. I mean, it worked out pretty well, stuck to the plan and it ended up way better than I ever thought it could.”

READ MORE: Kimberley skier wins five golds at Para Alpine National Championships

Ericsson is now back in Calgary for some well-earned downtime, following a month of training and competing in Austria, Italy and Slovenia. Poor snow conditions in Europe, however, meant less competing than he had anticipated, and difficult conditions on the races he was able to do. He headed into the trip expecting to race ten times, but wound up only getting to do four of them.

“The last four days of the trip we were only able to race, the rest was mostly training,” he said. “It was a long trip just due to the fact that we couldn’t race as much but other than that it was pretty good.”

Ericsson and Smith won second place in the final giant slalom (GS) of the season at the FIS Para Alpine Ski World Cup Finals in Sella Nevea, Ita., their fourth GS podium, putting them in third in the overall GS standings on the World Cup circuit.

According to, Ericsson and Smith’s arrival and rapid ascent on the circuit was very timely, as Mac Marcoux, a legend of Canadian visually-impaired alpine skiing, announced his retirement earlier this year.

“I’ve known Mac for quite a long time, I’ve known him since before I became visually impaired,” Ericsson said. “Going through my visual impairment, at the start of that, I was definitely in contact with Mac a lot to figure out solutions and hear some things from somebody who’s dealt with it for most of their life.

“And obviously his retirement is pretty sad, but it’s cool that the reins have kind have been given over to me, if you will, in that I can take on his legacy and continue that movement of greatness in Canadian visually impaired skiing.”

READ MORE: Kimberley’s Kalle Ericsson gets three podiums in FIS Para Alpine Ski World Cup

Looking back on this remarkable first season, there’s obviously a lot to be proud of, but Ericsson one recent highlight sticks out in his mind above the rest, from the last slalom race he did in Sella Nevea.

“I was competing against the top two guys, I was going into the second run sitting in third and then I managed to take the lead off of them in the second and came out with the win,” he explained. “I definitely think sitting in not a great spot but then being able to put down a crazy run and get in front of those guys, who I’ve been trying to beat for the majority of the season, it was just a very cool experience.”

Ericsson will now enjoy some rest and relaxation in Calgary for a few weeks, before heading out to Whistler with the rest of Team Canada, where they will be doing dry-land training and working out in the gym from May until September, before the next season begins.

About the Author: Paul Rodgers

Read more