Alain Baxter remains the best slalom skier in British history after climbing from a world ranking of 960 in 1992 to just 11 in 2001. He remains a hugely respected figure in international ski racing with a string of skiing credits to his name including a fourth place at a World Cup in Sweden.
Andy Hayward, Trustee of Ski 4 Cancer said “Alain is one of the most talented slalom skiers this country has ever produced. It’s a real boost to have him involved. Alain joins former British downhill skiing legend Graham Bell and Everest summiter Rhys Jones. The momentum is growing... we hope to announce some female patrons in the not too distant future as well.”
Andy continued “Like Alain, I spent much of my early years on the slopes in Scotland. Given we plan to host respite breaks at both Nevis Range and Cairngorm in the years ahead, I wanted to find a fellow Scot to spearhead our presence in the Highlands. I’m delighted Alain is involved... I just hope he doesn’t challenge me to a charity ski race any time soon!”
Since retiring from skiing in 2009, Alain has gone on to do a lot of work for charity having been closely involved with the spinal injury organisation The Backup Trust for many years. Aside from appearing on national television from time to time (he won the coveted BBC’s Superstars series), Alain has also trained with the GB track cycling team in the run up to the London 2012 Olympics.
Alain recently took part in the Home Nation Challenge for Sports Relief where he cycled, ran, rowed and sailed his way around Britain and Ireland totalling over 1,000 miles. Despite this, Alain still has had time to set up his own ski and snow sports shop in Stirling where he provides a state-of-the-
Commenting on the announcement, Alain said “Like most skiers I have known a lot of people, skiers and non-skiers alike, who have been affected by cancer. I really like Ski 4 Cancer’s approach to helping people. The mountains are a magical place to visit at any time of year and a holiday gives families in tough circumstances something to look forward to. It’s a good fit for me and I look forward to supporting the Ski 4 Cancer team in the years to come.”
For more information about Ski 4 Cancer visit http://www.ski4cancer.org. For more information about Alain Baxter please visit http://www.alainbaxter.co.uk
About Ski 4 Cancer
Ski 4 Cancer provides alpine based respite days and holidays for British families affected by cancer and makes grants to UK based care institutions. Ski 4 Cancer also funds research into the positive effects of sport (e.g. skiing) and how it can help both prevent cancer and assist in recovery post diagnosis.
About Alain Baxter
Alain Baxter's hard fought rise up through the 6,000 internationally registered racers worldwide is a testament to his determination to succeed and his raw talent. But some would argue he was always destined to make it to the top.
His parents (Iain and Sue) were both British Ski Team members and subsequently leading figures in British ski teaching, so it was no surprise when they named their son after one of their own heroes, the 70s French skiing star Alain Penz.
Living in Aviemore he had the run of the local Cairngorm ski slopes where he inherited all of his parents' love of the sport and he also developed his basic skills and competitive instinct. He was also becoming a mean Shinty player (the traditional team game of the Highlands which is like a tough relation of Hockey) and an accomplished semi-professional ice hockey player. He still sometimes plays for local teams, but luckily for Britain, he stuck to skiing.
Alain joined the Scottish Junior Ski Team in 1987. In 1992, at the age of 18, he was selected to join the British Ski Team and obtained a World Slalom Ranking of 960. By 1999 at the age of just 25 he broke the famed 100 barrier in terms of ranking, being ranked 87th. Alain went on to achieve a worldwide ranking of just 11 in 2002 where he won a Bronze medal at the Salt Lake City Olympics and became the first Briton ever to win a Bronze for skiing.