Alaska to host, train Chinese Olympians for 2022 Winter Games
Governor Bill Walker is back from a 10-day trade mission in China.
One thing he has to show for it, a memorandum of understanding with the Chinese leadership to work together towards training some of China's Winter Olympic athletes right here in Alaska.
The agreement with Alaska Pacific University involves Nordic skiing, as China will host the 2022 winter games.
A university spokesperson said late Sunday afternoon, the details are still being worked out, but Chinese representatives are due to arrive in Anchorage soon.
Alaskan cross-country skier Kikkan Randall won America's first gold in women's Nordic skiing during this year's winter games in South Korea. She is also part of the APU Ski Team.
In January, Gov. Walker and the Chinese president discussed the athletes coming to Alaska during his visit to Anchorage. The governor revealed more details at the Alaska Oil and Gas Association Annual Convention.
"They'll be over here in about a month. Actually, later this month. They responded, they want to come over and talk about our facilities. That was one of those surprise meetings, you go in, you know, expecting one thing you're focused on and it just got better and better so it was a great trip," Governor Walker said.
Alaskan hockey player Zoe Hickel plays for China's Kunlun Red Star Professional Women's Hockey Team. She got the team to train in Anchorage in January. Part of her job is to help get the Chinese skaters ready for the next Olympics.
The governor hinted some of the hockey training could also take place in Anchorage, along with downhill skiing at Alyeska.
Resort representatives have not returned calls to comment on that, but the governor said one of Alyeska's vice president's made up part of the governor's trade mission to China.
Questions or comments about this story? Email reporter Dave Leval.
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