Sunshine Alpine Racers Coaches
Our coaches are our connection to our athletes who will form our future and all have one thing in common. A passion for the sport of skiing and for sharing that passion with our junior athletes. See below for short bios on the Sunshine Alpine Racers coaching team.
Jim Read, Program Director and FIS Coach
(CSCF Level 3)
Our Head Coach, Jim Read, is a Canadian alpine ski racing legend.
Jim grew up skiing and training in the Canadian Rockies. He trained with the Lake Louise Ski Club until age 15, when he moved up to the Alberta Alpine Ski Team. He was promoted to the Canadian Alpine Ski Team at age 18 and represented Canada internationally until 1989. Jim was on the Canadian Alpine Ski Team for 8 years. Jim was Canada’s National Technical Alpine Skiing champion 11 times (8 senior titles, 3 Junior/Juvenile titles), and raced as part of Canada’s national team on the World Cup circuit for 8 years. He also represented Canada in the 1984 and 1988 Winter Olympics.
Jim competed on the World Professional Tour and in the Legends Tour for eight years, and since his retirement from the professional circuit, continues to race. He has been the champion of the Kahlua Cup Dual Slalom three times. Jim has obtained his Level 3 certification from the Canadian Ski Coaches Federation.
Jim now lives in Calgary with his wife Heather, son Taylor and daughter Tianna, and pursue his sports passions of skiing, mountain biking , windsurfing and Kiteboarding. When asked to comment about the Club’s programs’ goals, Jim said: ” I like it when the kids develop a true love for the sport of skiing.” True words, from a master of the sport.
Matt Carss, FIS Coach
(CSCF Level 3, CSIA Level 2)
Born in Calgary and grew up learning to ski at local hills (mainly lake Louise and Fortress). This year will be Matt’s 15th season with the club.
Matt is one of the best skiers around and loves to ski hard with all the athletes in the program.
Garrett Wilson, U16 Coach
(CSCF Level 1)
Background: I grew up in the Montreal area, skiing at Mont Saint-Sauveur, Mont Tremblant, and Mont Sainte-Anne. I moved to Calgary and began racing at the Nancy Greene level with the Kananaskis Ski Team. I switched to the Sunshine Ski Club at age 11 and raced with Sunshine until the age of 17. I went to the Alberta Ski Team after my second year of FIS with Sunshine.
Coaching philposohy: I believe that developing a passion for skiing in young racers is the most influential and integral part of their development. Not only as ski racers, but as all around skiers as well. Getting the athletes excited and enthusiastic about time spent on and off snow with the team is my main focus as a coach and a role model.
Johnny Bennett, U14 Coach
(CSIA level 3, CSCF level 2)
I grew up in southern Ontario skiing and ski racing at Caledon ski club. I ski raced competively for 5 years along with playing basketball and soccer competively at the same time. I have coached ski racing in the area full time for over 10 years now and have coached and instructed for over 20 years.
My main passion outside skiing is mountain biking. I love how skiing and mountain biking require the same skill sets, and give similar feelings as skiing. Choosing a line, gassing out of a turn, even sending a jump line. It all feels the same as a skiing and ski racing.
I currently reside in Banff Alta., and work in landscaping for half the year. I find that this is a really great way to ‘relax’ and put ski racing in perspective in the summer, even though digging a hole isn’t very relaxing while you are doing it!
My goal always for the kids is to have fun, and learn how to ski and ski race. Since this is a life-long sport for everybody, I want to make sure to help create skiers for life. It has been a great journey for me and I hope to instill similar experiences in my athletes.