In the biggest meet so far this season, Whitehorse figure skaters were landing jumps and posting strong results at the BMO BC/YT Sectional Championships last week and over the weekend in Kelowna, BC.
Four Arctic Edge club members made the trip South with Whitehorse’s Rachel Pettitt topping the list of accomplishments.
Competing a few days before her teammates in the middle of last week, Pettitt, 11, climbed atop the podium with a golden performance in the juvenile ladies division
“I had a really good performance,” said Pettitt. “I had good and high jumps – I fell on one jump, but I still managed to get up there. I landed all my other seven jumps though.”
In the area of where athlete meets artist, Pettitt also won her division’s Interpretation Award, given for the best artistic interpretation and overall performance.
“I think I was just calmer than the one before and that allowed my jumps to go higher,” said Pettitt.
Pettitt’s gold comes after finishing 11th in her short program and 14th in the freeskate at the BC Coast Regional Championship at the end of October. However, at the Regionals Pettitt skated in the older pre-novice ladies division to help prepare her for the Canada Winter Games in February as a member of Team Yukon.
“It was practice for the Canada Winter Games, to get me going,” said Pettitt.
Her next competition is right here in town at the Yukon Championships at the start of next month.
“For the Yukon Championships I’m going to put my double-axel in my program,” said Pettitt. “I just learned that jump.”
Completing the most triples he’s done in a program, Arctic Edge’s Kevin Caron, 19, skating in the senior men’s division, took fifth, finishing fifth in both the long and short programs.
“In both programs I had amazing triple salchow-double toes,” said Caron. “The short program went really well, it felt like a good skate, and the long was the same. Everything went as planned.”
With his fifth-place finish, Caron earned a spot as an alternate for the BMO Skate Canada Challenge at the start of December, the top 16 from which go the BMO Canadian Figure Skating Championships where he finished 17th last year.
With her flight out of Whitehorse delayed by hours, Arctic Edge’s Michelle Gorczyca, 20, arrived in Kelowna just in time to avoid disqualification from the competition, missing her practice ice-time in the process.
Nonetheless Gorczyca, took sixth in the short program and fifth in the long for sixth overall in the senior ladies division.
“My short program was alright – I landed a nice double-axel,” said Gorczyca. “The two other jumps didn’t go as well.
“But I got Level 3s and 4s on my spins and a Level 3 on my footwork, which has never happened before. So I was really happy about that.
“It’s my first year in senior, so I was kind of the newbie in it.”
Whitehorse’s Teneil Caron, 18, who will also be representing the territory at the Canada Games in the New Year, placed 24th in the novice ladies division on the weekend.
“I landed everything mostly,” said Teneil. “It felt good; it was a good competition,”
Joining Pettitt and Teneil at the Canada Games is Arctic Edge’s Bryn Hoffman, who, like Teneil, represented the Yukon at the Arctic Winter Games last March. At the Arctic Games Hoffman won gold medals in both the short and long programs in the Ladies 3 division. Skating up a division in the Ladies 4, Teneil won a gold in the long program and silver in the short for a second-place finish overall.
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