22-year-old ski-cross racer Mikayla Martin passed away on the evening of October 1 following a mountain bike accident in her hometown of Squamish, BC. She was riding in the Slhaney Trail system behind Stawamus Chief Provincial Park.
“We wish to express our most sincere condolences to Christine and James, Mikayla’s parents, as well as her entire family and circle of friends,” said Vania Grandi, President and CEO of Alpine Canada in a release
. “Mikayla embodied a love of skiing and passion for ski cross that were boundless and words can’t express how sorely she’ll be missed.”
Mikayla grew up in Squamish B.C and developed into a promising alpine ski racer as a member of the Whistler Mountain Ski Club. She switched to Ski Cross following the 2016-2017 alpine racing season and quickly made a name for herself in her new sport, joining the national team in 2017.
In the summer of 2018, Mikayla was crowned FIS World Junior Champion in Cardrona, New Zealand. Proving that she was among the best up-and-coming athletes in North America and internationally, Mikayla was given the opportunity to make the jump to the World Cup circuit last winter. She achieved two top-10 results at the beginning of the 2019 season including a career-best 6th place at the World Cup in Innichen, Switzerland. Her successes earned her a spot on the Canadian team for World Championships at Solitude, USA last February.
She was poised to race on the World Cup circuit during the 2020-21 season.
"The death of Mikayla is a huge loss for the community of Squamish and an immense loss for her family and friends and our thoughts are with them," says Sergeant Sascha Banks. "It can't be stressed more that adventuring in Squamish comes with inherent risks. We can only ask that you take that one more risk assessment, one more second to check the geographics, one more look at your equipment, and one more conversation about what the plan is. We all want people to live doing what they love."
The full statement from the Squamish RCMP can be found here
Squamish Mayor Karen Elliott had this to say.
“In a town that celebrates mountain adventure, we are heartbroken to hear of the loss of this young life, so filled with talent and promise. On behalf of the District of Squamish, I wish to extend our sincere condolences to Mikayla’s family and friends, and to all Squamish locals who will mourn for her in the wake of this tragic outcome.”
Our thoughts are with Mikayla's friends and family.