Lockey locked on podium finish at Paralympics

Rossland snowboarder Ian Lockey is set to ride at the World Cup in La Molina, Spain this weekend.

Rossland snowboarder Ian Lockey is set to ride at the World Cup in La Molina, Spain this weekend, but his sights are firmly set on the podium in Sochi.

Lockey realized his dream of competing at the 2014 Paralympic Games in Sochi, Russia on Jan. 29 when he was named to the Canadian Paralympic team.

“I was feeling stoked, but to be nominated comes the realization that all this hard work has been worthwhile,” said Lockey.

About 15 years ago, the Aukland native suffered a severed spinal-chord while snowboarding in New Zealand. It left Lockey with 50 per cent use of the muscles below the waist. Doctors told Lockey he would never walk let alone hit the slopes again, but after countless hours of rehabilitation,  determination, a move to Rossland, and a modified snowboard Lockey was back in action and has been riding with the Canadian snowboard team since 2008.

To stay in shape and compete at such a high-level, Lockey trains regularly at Red Mountain and with GetFocus Gym in Trail.

“We’ve been working really hard on my core, to make it as strong as it can possibly be to make up for what I don’t have.”

And his hard work has paid off. His results in the para-snowboarding World Cup races this season have been impressive. Lockey placed in the top-10 in every race he competed, riding to fifth in Colorado at Copper Mountain, and 10th and seventh at Big White two weeks ago. While he has yet to podium this year, Lockey is confident he can go faster, but until he is in the gate at Sochi, he  plans to exercise a measure of caution.

“I’ve been riding really good . . .  Obviously I know I can go faster, but I’m running with a little bit of self-control, and fear and respect for my body at the moment because I can lay it on the line, but then there is the possibility I might not make it to the bottom and won’t make it to Russia.”

With the World Cup finals in La Molina this weekend, Lockey along with teammates Tyler Mosher of Whistler and Ottawa’s John Leslie will use the race as a tune up for the real prize in Russia.

“I will be going there to put the final touches of what I’ve been working on all season,” he said. “There’s a couple of areas that need work, so rather than risking myself in other areas, I’ll work on what I need to work on.”

The former Kiwi became a Canadian citizen and says he is now prouder than anyone to wear the red and white.

“This is who I want to ride for. I’ve lived here (Rossland) for 12 years now and have got nothing but support from the people here and the establishment that has helped me get where I am.”

The 40-year-old snowboarder will also be part of history as para-snowboarding makes its debut at the Paralympics thanks to pioneers of the sport like Lockey, Mosher, and para-snowboarding head coach Candice Drouin.

“We are really looking forward to going back to Sochi,”coach Drouin told Canada Snowboard. “We had a great test event there last season. Our athletes are excited to showcase the sport and their skills to the world and it’s a great opportunity for para-athletes to build awareness so more people with a disability can learn about taking part in our sport.”

Para-snowboarding will likely garner a lot of attention in its debut at the Games and Lockey says he will try to enjoy both the scrutiny and the support.

Until then he will work hard to perfect his technique in hopes of achieving his next goal, a trip to the podium at the Paralympic Games.

“I know I can snowboard faster than anyone else, I’ve proved that time and again,” said Lockey. “I just have to make sure I’m standing up when I get to the bottom.”

The Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games goes from Mar. 7-16. Men’s and women’s para-snowboard  will race in Sochi on Mar. 14. Go to www.ianlockey.com to lend your support.

Just Posted

Students at Creston Valley Secondary School put together an art installation of a replica residential school room. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
Creston students create art installation of residential school room

The replica was decorated with a small bed, school uniform, and notes written with pleas for help

A living wage sets a higher standard than the minimum wage; it is what a family needs to earn to provide the basic needs based on the actual costs of living in a community.
Fruitvale now a living wage employer

“I’m really excited that Fruitvale is leading the charge for municipalities locally,” Morissette said.

Nelson police say a man attacked two people downtown with bear spray on Wednesday afternoon. File photo
Two people attacked with bear spray in downtown Nelson: police

Police say the three people know each other

Rotary eClub of Waneta Sunshine, alongside members from the Kootenay Native Plant Society and Trail Wildlife Association, joined together for a day of planting at Fort Shepherd. The Waneta Sunshine eClub was granted funds through an Express Grant from District 5080 to plant 50 shrubs which support pollinator opportunities at Fort Shepherd. Photos: Submitted
Kootenay conservation partners plant pollinator ‘superfoods’ at Fort Shepherd

TLC welcomes community groups to Fort Shepherd who would like to help local ecosystems thrive

Harold and Sadie Holoboff are bringing great food and service to the Eagle’s Nest Restaurant at Champion Lakes Golf and Country Club. Photo: Jim Bailey
West Kootenay golf course welcomes father-daughter team to restaurant

Chef Harold Holoboff brings comfort food to another level at Champion Lakes Eagle’s Nest Restaurant

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

A Heffley Creek peacock caught not one - but two - lifts on a logging truck this month. (Photo submitted)
Heffley Creek-area peacock hops logging trucks in search of love

Peacock hitched two lifts in the past month

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the patients likely acquired the virus in the hospital

The first suspension bridge is the tallest in Canada, with a second suspension bridge just below it. The two are connected by a trail that’s just over 1 km. (Claire Palmer photo)
PHOTOS: The highest suspension bridges in Canada just opened in B.C.

The Skybridge in Golden allows visitors to take in views standing at 130 and 80 metres

BC Green Party leader and Cowichan Valley MLA Sonia Furstenau introduced a petition to the provincial legislature on Thursday calling for the end of old-growth logging in the province. (File photo)
BC Green leader Furstenau introduces old-growth logging petition

Party calls for the end of old-growth logging as protests in Fairy Creek continue

B.C. Premier John Horgan leaves his office for a news conference in the legislature rose garden, June 3, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. premier roasted for office budget, taxing COVID-19 benefits

Youth addiction law that triggered election hasn’t appeared

A vial containing the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is shown at a vaccination site in Marcq en Baroeul, outside Lille, northern France, Saturday, March 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Michel Spingler
mRNA vaccines ‘preferred’ for all Canadians, including as 2nd dose after AstraZeneca: NACI

New recommendations prioritizes Pfizer, Moderna in almost all cases

Most Read