Statement from Mark Kristofic, President of Alpine Ontario:



    TORONTO, Nov. 15 /CNW/ - "It has now been 72 hours since Canadian K2 and
Whistler Cup Champion Richard Long's accident while training in Colorado.
While it is still too early to determine the prognosis, our thoughts and
prayers are with Richard and his family.
    Richard sustained serious head and internal injuries, and remains fully
sedated - the standard procedure for injuries of this nature. He is receiving
high quality medical treatment, and we are doing everything possible to
support his parents and other family members who are with him in Denver.
    A special web page and email address have been set up by Alpine Ontario,
enabling well wishes to be sent along to Richard and his family. The response
has been tremendous, and we are greatly heartened by the rallying spirit our
community has shown since the accident.
    First and foremost, we are supporting Richard and his family. Alpine
Ontario has also taken extensive action to provide support and counselling for
other members of the Ontario team training in Colorado, and their families.
Senior representatives from Alpine Ontario have flown to Colorado to assist
the Long family, the athletes and their coaches. Back home we have been in
touch with each athlete's family personally, to keep them up-to-date and offer
advice and counselling.
    At the same time, we have launched our own investigation into what
happened, in addition to external examinations taking place as a matter of
course. We have mobilized a Safety and Training Protocol Team, and we will be
systematically gathering and reviewing the details of the accident.
    Further information on these activities is available at the Alpine
Ontario website, www.alpineontario.ca, which we will update as new information
becomes available.
    Above all, we will continue to do whatever we can to help Richard and his
family, as well as our other athletes and their families, during this
difficult time, while continuing to hope that the days ahead will bring good
news on Richard's condition."

    Message from Brammer, Lisa and Braden Long (Richard's parents and
    brother, who are with him in Denver):

    "We are overwhelmed by the amount of support and messages we have
received from AOA, ACA and the ski racing community.
    Not only have friends responded but we have received many heartfelt
emails from ski families we have never met.
    It really helps to lift our spirits in this difficult time. It is a
waiting game and we must be patient.
    Richard is a champion and we believe he will pull through.
    Thanks to everyone."




For further information:

For further information: Mark Kristofic, (705) 333-8840

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ALPINE ONTARIO ALPIN

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