Four hundred of the nation's top Nordic skiers took to the trails of Kincaid Park Thursday as part of the Nordic Junior Nationals.

"I wish I could have done a little bit better, you know; there's always room for improvement," said Minnesota skier Matthew Bourne.

He did not come alone.

Competitors not only brought their skis, and coaches, but, their parents.

"We're loving the venue here, loving the views, it's beautiful, it's a beautiful race course," said Bourne's father Mike.

Race Committee Chairperson Joey Caterinichio helped lead the winning bid for the championships.

"These are races that you bid on with the U.S. Ski and Snowboard (Association)," she said. "They don't come to us very often, it's a special event to be able to have."

It's the first time Anchorage has hosted the event since 2008, and things have improved since then.

"We have internet, we have a sound system, we have really just been modern brought in timers that is live streamed, this is being streamed all over the nation," Caterinichio said.

The tournament is is expected to generate $500,000 for the local economy. Caterinichio said that's from hotel stays, meals, car rentals, and visits to local attractions.

"I actually like to ski a lot, so, I'm going to try and get some, do some of the race courses, and then I would like to see the animal museum, maybe go along the coast," said Bourne's mother Kathy.

Organizers said Fairbanks is scheduled to host the 2024 Junior Nationals, with 2029 the next year Anchorage can host this event.

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