Barnerts beef powering Canadian lugers
Olympics: Family hopes to kick start donation, sponsorships
By: Bruce Campbell
| Posted: Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 11:58 am
Canadian lugers at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia will be beefed up with meat from right here in the Foothills.
Pin to Point Gelbvieh south of Okotoks donated 600-pounds of grass-fed beef to the six Canadian lugers who placed in the top 10 at the 2012 world championships.
“The family decided that we wanted to donate a cow to the luge team,” said Jeremiah Barnert of Pin to Point just south of the Big Rock.
“It’s worth about $4,500 and they are actually getting the meat.”
The beef at Pin Point has already turned in some impressive numbers. The Barnerts have won numerous provincial wrestling championships for the Foothills Composite Falcons, including Cassidy winning her second consecutive title last year.
There is also a family connection to the luge team. The lean Jeremiah is the strength coach for the Canadian lugers.
“People need to know this team can do very well at the next Olympics,” Barnert said. “In the grand scheme of things we have very little sponsors, but I hope there are a lot of other people out there who might be willing to help.”
All six of the lugers who finished in the top 10 at the world championships were at the Barnerts’ ranch Monday afternoon enjoying beef on a bun and homemade chili, and more importantly promoting their sport to the members of the media who can’t turn down a free meal.
Luger Kim McRae, who was seventh in the world last year, said she is glad to have the extra beef in her freezer.
“We can focus on our training and know that we have that beef and protein in our fridge — that little bit of help actually goes a long ways,” McRae said.
She needs all the help she can get.
McRae is a carded athlete receiving $900 a month from Canada in preparation for Sochi — an amount better for KD rather than high-quality beef.
“The carding just covers your necessities — your food, rent, cell phone — anything on top of that you have to work,” she said. “We need support in order to keep the program going for the next few years.”
She gave the beef rave reviews.
“I cooked some up the other day and the ground beef, you didn’t have to drain it at all,” McRae said. “It’s very lean.”
Sam Edney said he is hoping some of the Barnerts’ beef will power him to his third Olympics.
He previously competed in Vancouver in 2010 where he was seventh and Turin, Italy in 2006. He was fifth in the world championships last year.
“This gives us one less thing to worry about,” Edney said. “One vital component of any athlete is their diet and the nutrition they are getting between workouts and races. This right away takes away one hurdle to try and make ends meet.
“Organic meat is really expensive if you go to the grocery store or the butcher. This partnership immediately takes away that hurdle.”
Edney receives $1,500 a month from the federal government.
“When you think about being 29 and trying to pay rent in Calgary or a mortgage, you burn through that pretty quick,” he said.
Luger Tristan Walker needed all the protein he could get in his fridge. He was on a diet during the summer when he was eating about three times as much as the typical Canadian.
“During the mass-building phase of the summer I was eating between 5,000 and 7,000 calories a day,” he said. “The diet of a normal person is about 1,500 to 2,000 calories a day — so it is literally like feeding a small family. At $1,500 a month you start burning through it pretty quick.”
He’s all for eating Alberta beef — especially the organic variety.
“I have Barnert’s beef in my fridge right now — so I hope I will have it in there until the Olympics,” he said.
If anyone is interested in sponsoring the luge team or making a donation call Walter Corey at 1-604-966-4011.