After representing Canada in alpine skiing at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games, Georgia Simmerling switched over to the ‘dark side’ of ski racing in 2011, choosing to compete in ski cross. She then qualified for 2014 Olympic team in her new sport, going on to finish 14th in Sochi.
Simmerling had competed on the alpine World Cup circuit since December 2008. She had been leading the 2010-11 Nor-Am Cup downhill standings when she crashed in the final race of the season, sustaining a concussion and MCL damage in both knees. In the spring of 2011 she decided she was ready for a new challenge and after proving her potential during summer training camps, she earned a spot on the national ski cross team.
She quickly discovered that ski cross could be just as dangerous as alpine skiing. In February 2012 she caught an edge during a race and fell, breaking three vertebrae (C7, T2 and T3) in her neck and back. She was in an upper body and neck brace for seven weeks but did not require surgery. She returned to competition in December 2012 and earned the first World Cup podium of her career later in the month.
Simmerling competed at her first ski cross world championships in March 2013, finishing 13th.
World Cup Silver Medallist (ski cross)…
Getting Into the Sport: Started skiing at age six… Her older brothers were all in the Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club and her parents had a vision of the entire family skiing together… Began doing ski cross at age 22… Outside Interests: Enjoys yoga, knitting, reading, cooking, eating new foods… Always travels with her latest knitting project… Injuries: Has endured some major injuries in her career… In 2005 she accidentally skied off a cliff in Chile and ended up with a compound fracture to her jaw and multiple broken teeth… In another fall, she bit her tongue 75 per cent off and needed 50 stitches to fix it… Odds and Ends: Affiliated with charities Right to Play and Fast & Female… Visited Tanzania in 2013 with Right to Play… Favourite Olympic memory is hearing the crowd cheer for her and the entire Canadian team during the Vancouver 2010 Opening Ceremony and throughout the Games… Looked up to former alpine teammates Brit Janyk, Emily Brydon and Kelly VanderBeek… Favourite motto: Competitive edge, baby!
NOTABLE INTERNATIONAL RESULTS
FIS World Championships: 2013 – 13th (ski cross)