Hall of Famer
Born and raised in Ottawa, Ontario, John Fripp started skiing in 1927 at the age of 6 years. He was just 17-years of age in 1938 when he won the prestigious “Journal Trophy” competing in the Gatineau Ski
Zone Championships. Unfortunately, he was ineligible to win the trophy, he was too young, and it was awarded to another, more senior qualifier.
Also barred from competing in the Dominion Championships because of his age, he went to Lake Placid in upper New York State to test his skills against the Americans at the Eastern Olympic try-outs. He finished in third place in both Downhill and Slalom events, beaten by the fabled Dick Durrance.
In 1939, he won the “Journal Trophy” and in the same year placed 2nd in the famous Quebec Kandahar combined race, 1st in Downhill.
In 1940 he was appointed assistant professional ski instructor at Mont Tremblant and, in the same year, won the Quebec Kandahar race and placed 1st in both downhill and slalom events at the Eastern Canadian Championships. He also competed against the American and Austrian professionals at Sun Valley, Idaho, placing 16th in a field of 80 racers.
The second World War temporarily interrupted his skiing career when he joined the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1942. He became a member of the RCAF ski team and won an event at Mount Baldy in the fastest time ever recorded by a Canadian competitor.
When hostilities ceased in 1945, he returned to Mont Tremblant as head instructor of the Mont Tremblant Ski School with a staff of eight professional instructors.
In 1946, he again won the Quebec Kandahar race as well as the Alta Cup races in Alta, Utah.
He came out of retirement in 1951 to win the Quebec Kandahar; in 1953 he won the Open Class Canadian Downhill Championship and was top Canadian entrant at the Ryan Cup races in 1954.
In 1958, he was appointed Coach of the Canadian Federation Internationale de Ski (FIS) men’s team which competed at Bad Gastein, Germany. He was also a Director of the Canadian Amateur Ski Association (1957) and a Member of the International Competition Committee (1958).
Please Note: The ski information gathered here is compiled from a number of sources; it may not be inclusive of all accomplishments.
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John Fripp (far left), Joe Ryan (2nd from left) c. 1947. Louis Jacques, Standard Photo.
[L to R]: Alf Enger, John Fripp, Dicky Movitz (1946). CSHFM Collection.
John Fripp and Inductee Bob Richardson at 1997 Canadian Ski Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. CSHFM Collection.
Inductee John Fripp with his wife Liz at 1988 Canadian Ski Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. CSHFM Collection.
John Fripp (center) at 2002 Canadian Ski Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. W.P.McElligott 6308-19.
John Fripp (yellow sweater) at Mont Tremblant, QC, for 1998 Legends Race. CSHFM Collection.