Part of a group of emerging young Canadian female slalom specialists, 'Britt' had a breakthrough 2012-13 season as she recorded six top-30 World Cup finishes, including her first career top-10. Phelan, who has been a member of the national team since 2008, showed her promise with a fifth-place finish in slalom at the 2011 FIS Junior World Ski Championships. She made her debut at the senior world ski championships in Schladming, Austria, in 2013.
10th – Slalom – FIS World Cup – Zagreb, CRO (2013)
11th – Slalom – FIS World Cup – Lienz, AUT (2013)
1st – Slalom – Nor-Am Cup – Panorama, B.C. (2012)
World Cup ranking
Birth date: 24/09/1991
Birth place: Sainte Agathe des Monts, Que.
Residence: Mont-Tremblant, Que.
Hometown: Mont-Tremblant, Que.
Ski club: Mont Tremblant Ski Club
Made team: 2008
Weight: 143 pounds
Nickname(s):Britt, Brittles, Bertles.
What is your first memory of skiing? Chasing a stuffed animal that my dad tied to a string for incentive to ski faster. I think it had candy in it – or so I was told.
What has been your best moment in ski racing? Qualifying for my first second run in a World Cup in 2012 in Levi, Finland. It had been haunting me for so long that I had not yet made a second run. When I came down and saw I was 21st I felt like if that day was my last day on earth, I would be alright with that. It felt like I had won the Olympics. That feeling lasted a few weeks, then I was hungry for more.
What has been your worst moment in ski racing? My worst moment in ski racing was when I was leading the first run at the world junior championships and messed up my second run, finishing fifth. I still think about what almost could have happened, but I’ve accepted the fact that I wanted to win that day, and I held nothing back on my second run. I attacked the course to win, and I made a costly mistake. That’s ski racing.
What is your Olympic dream? My Olympic dream is to stand on the top of the podium. I want to race at the next three Olympics and be competitive in all of them.
What is the best thing about having the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia? I think its pretty sweet that the Olympics are in Russia. I got to race the dual slalom in Moscow and it was such a cool, different place. Russia is also special to me because although she’s never been, my sister is obsessed with the country, and I hope that if I get to compete she can come to watch and visit her favourite place in the world.
If you could listen to one song before leaving the start gate, what would it be? ‘Gangnam Style’ by PSY. Mikeala Tommy and I often describe our runs with some variation of, “It was so gangnam style'. It usually means it felt crazy but it worked out.
If you could bring anyone in the world - living or from the past - to one of your races, who would they be and why? Michael Jackson. From doing projects about him back in high school, to watching the This Is It footage, I have an incredible amount of respect for him. He was so passionate about what he did and was an extreme perfectionist in his line of work. He preached so much about the importance of love and children, and despite all the allegations, I truly believe he wanted to make the world a better place through his love and music. MJ gave his heart and soul to his career and in my opinion died a premature death because of the false allegations. I want to be as passionate about what I have to give to the world as he was.
What’s a talent or skill you have that fans might be surprised to learn about? I don't need to sleep or rest very much. I usually have one day a week where I need a long nap or something, but otherwise I usually have a ton of energy.
If you had just one day left to live, how would you spend it? I would want to be with my family – preferably somewhere on a huge mountain with a ton of powder and a helicopter so we could do as many runs as possible in one day. If there was time to go mountain bike and whitewater kayak, that would be good too.
If you could own a business or be trained in any career other than ski racing, what would you choose? Ski cross for sure. That sport is sick. I like big jumps and I like going fast. If only there was a way to do both simultaneously.
When I’m not skiing, you can probably find me: mountain biking, running around somewhere, or kayaking.
What’s the best thing about your hometown? The best thing about Mont-Tremblant is the warm rivers and lakes! Now that I'm living in Canmore, Alta., I kinda miss jumping in the lake for fun, and not just doing it as a recovery cold tub.
Name the most surprising thing in your suitcase when you’re on the road: There’s not much in my suitcase while I’m no the road. I travel light. “The things you own end up owning you.” – Fight Club
Describe your favourite thing to eat or drink during race season: Coffee is key on race day. Actually, everyday. I like to eat bananas before races too.
If you could design your own World Cup spot anywhere in the world, where would it be? It would definitely be in the Yukon. I was lucky enough to race there during Canada Games seven years ago, and it remains my favourite place in the world to this day.
Where is your favourite place to race or train? Levi, Finland. I like the anticipation and nerves leading up to the first World cup of the season, and Levi is just such a different place. It’s dark, cold, and beautiful. It is my definition of winter.
If you could have one superpower, what would it be? The ability to keep everyone alive. Losing people is my greatest fear.
If you could build your dream home anywhere in the world, where would it be? Home is where the heart is, so wherever my loved ones are. Hopefully there would be lots of mountains and a ton of snow.
What’s the funniest thing you’ve seen a teammate do while on the road? One of The funniest things I took part in on the road was taking a leftover half sandwich at a restaurant for one of my teammates. I stashed it in my pocket and then gave it to her and she ate it. I think you had to be there.
Who is someone you admire in sport? I admire any athlete who gives their life to their sport – the athletes who compete to inspire, and be the best they can be. The ones who give their everything. The ones who don't do it as a job. The ones who don't rely on talent, but unwavering commitment to being better every single day. The passionate people.
Finishes in the top 30
24th - Slalom - Kranjska Gora, SLO (Jan. 2014)
11th - Slalom - Lienz, AUT (Dec. 2013)
27th - Slalom - Courchevel, FRA (Dec. 2013)
29th - Slalom - Maribor, SLO (Jan. 2013)
10th - Slalom _ Zagreb, CRO (Jan. 2013)
16th - Slalom - Semmering, AUT (Dec. 2012)
22nd – Slalom – Are, SWE (Dec. 2012)
21st – Slalom – Aspen, USA (Nov. 2012)
28th – Slalom – Levi, FIN (Nov. 2012)
2014 Olympic Winter Games - Sochi, RUS
15th - Slalom
FIS Alpine World Ski Championships
30th - Slalom - Schladming, AUT (Feb. 2013)
FIS World Junior Ski Championships
5th – Slalom – Crans Montana, SUI (Feb. 2011)
Nor-Am Cup podiums
2nd - Slalom - Calgary, CAN (March 2014)
1st – Slalom – Panorama, B.C. (Dec. 2012)
2nd – Slalom – Panorama, B.C. (Dec. 2012)
1st – Slalom – Loveland, USA (Nov. 2012)
3rd – Slalom – Loveland, USA (Nov. 2012)
3rd – Slalom – Vail, USA (Feb. 2012)
2nd – Slalom – Loveland, USA (Nov. 2010)
1st – Slalom – Panorama, B.C. (Dec. 2009)
3rd – Slalom – Mt. St. Anne, QC (Jan. 2008)