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Scott Gow: Bow Valley's Beijing Bound Athletes

"This is possible, like on the right day that could have been a podium that’s how close it was.”

Scott Gow, biathlon, top 5 world cup threat

Scott Gow set the tone for what is possible in Beijing.

At the opening world cup race this season, labelled Biathlon Canada’s best day in a decade, Gow was a force of nature.

Racing like two of his favourite franchise video games, Call of Duty and Mario Kart, Gow sniped everything on the range and out-skied the top players in the game, without the use of slippery banana peels or a missile-seeker blue shells.

It was something to watch from the old guy on the national team cruising to a career best fourth place and first ever flower ceremony.

“It was awesome,” said Gow, 31. “I’m really happy to have personal best and a personal best that close to the podium at the start of an Olympic season. All those things just added up to telling me at least or to everyone that we’re on the right track. This is possible, like on the right day that could have been a podium that’s how close it was.”


A post shared by Scott Gow (@scott.gow)

In the final world cup before Beijing, the men’s relay team of Gow, brother Christian Gow, Jules Burnotte and Adam Runnalls finished fifth. 

No stranger to top relay results, it was the Canadian men’s best result since the 2016 world championships where the Gow brothers, Nathan Smith and Brendan won bronze.

The success this season came after one of the toughest points of Gow’s career. The Olympian had foot surgery in the 2020-21 offseason and didn’t look like himself until about the half way through the season. But he slowly turned things around, saving his best stuff for last and taking a career-best 10th place in the final world cup of 2020-21.

About to compete at his second Games, Gow is a big fan of the Olympics. He’s been watching them all since a little kid, but admittedly, had a harder time keeping up while he represented Canada in 2018 (we’ll forgive you this time, Scott).

As a crafty veteran in the sport, one of the things benefiting him is experience and maturity. Gow’s lived the cycles of ups-and-downs and all the anxieties and uncertainties that high-level racing brings.

On top of new coaches bringing different perspectives at Biathlon Canada, Gow’s worked closely with a sports psychologist. Along with keeping the physical side of the game mint, the high-level athlete’s mind is a well-oiled machine too.

“Part of it is a breathing pattern and cue words I like to use to try to get myself in the zone and centred for the days and what my goals are for the day. I picture what will happen and what I’m trying to accomplish,” he said.

When chasing the speedy leaders, Gow’s been impressive in shaving off the seconds over the years when pursuing the top crowd from +10.1 s/km in 2018-19 to this season’s +6.6 s/km.

“I know what I am capable of and I’m confident in that ability and I’m able to bring that confidence to my racing,” said Gow. 

“Flash forward to now, I know where I stand and I know how I can ski and shoot, so it’s more about making those two come

together on a race day without stressing about a ‘what if’. That’s the biggest change from even four years ago [in PyeongChang].”

Because of the great results and racing Gow’s had recently, he doesn’t think it’s too crazy to aim steady, straight and try to pick off a medal in Beijing.

“There’s a lot of guys at the world cup level that are as good or better than me, so trying to catch up and beat them is really the main goal,” he said.

Jordan Small

About the Author: Jordan Small

An award-winning reporter, Jordan Small has covered sports, the arts, and news in the Bow Valley since 2014. Originally from Barrie, Ont., Jordan has lived in Alberta since 2013.
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