Jesse Cockney at the start of a World Cup race in Quebec in 2012. Cephas/Wikimedia
Cross-country skier Jesse Cockney is the latest athlete with Northwest Territories roots to be named to Team Canada for the 2018 Winter Olympics.
Cockney, 28, was born in Yellowknife and learned to ski in the city before moving to Canmore, Alberta. He made his Olympic debut four years ago in Sochi, Russia, placing 53rd in the sprint and 56th in the mass start 50km while helping the relay team to 12th.
Cockney was named among an 11-strong Team Canada cross-country ski roster on Monday. Three of his Olympic team-mats hail from Yukon capital Whitehorse: Dahria Beatty, Knute Johnsgaard, and Emily Nishikawa.
He joins Hay River biathlete Brendan Green and Yellowknife-born curling skip Kevin Koe as NWT representatives on Team Canada for this year’s Winter Olympics, which begin at the end of next week in the South Korean region of Pyeongchang.
Michael Gilday, a short track speed skater from Yellowknife who competed at Sochi 2014, travels to Pyeongchang as an analyst for CBC television.
Cockney is of Inuvialuit heritage. His father, Angus, was born in Tuktoyaktuk and twice won gold medals at the Canada Games in 1975, according to a CBC profile published in the lead-up to the Sochi Olympics.
This season he has a handful of sprint victories on the Nor-Am Cup circuit to his name, while his recent appearances at World Cup level resulted in finishes of 54th and 57th.