Elite cross-country skiers coming to Quebec City for World Cup event

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QUEBEC - Elite cross-country skiers from around the world will be in Quebec City for World Cup races slated for Dec. 7-8.

FIS, the International Ski Federation, says it's the first time it has staged a World Cup cross-country event in eastern North America.

Men's and women's sprints will take place on a 850-metre course in front of Quebec's parliament in the old city. There is no charge for spectators.

"Fans will feel the action and speed that urban sprints deliver while enjoying the beauty of this . . . environment such as the parliament hill along the famous Quebec fortification," says Patrice Drouin, president of event organizer Gestev Inc.

Games and learn-to-ski activities for families will be offered at George V park nearby. As well, amateur races open to all are set for Dec. 9.

Cold weather has allowed organizers to make snow for the races, a spokesperson said Monday.

From Quebec, the athletes travel to Canmore, Alta., for World Cup competitions Dec. 13-16.

Online: http://www.sprintquebec.com/

Organizations: International Ski Federation

Geographic location: Quebec City, North America, Canmore

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