Rachel Pettitt skates to sixth at Sectionals

Whitehorse's Rachel Pettitt stepped on the ice in what would be her final competitive performance with no pressure weighing on her.

Whitehorse’s Rachel Pettitt stepped on the ice in what would be her final competitive performance with no pressure weighing on her.

A botched short program all but eliminated her chances at a podium spot at Skate Canada’s BC/YT Sectional Championships in Richmond on Sunday.

So she just did her thing in her long program.

“I didn’t have anything to lose going into it,” said Pettitt. “I just forgot about it and just skated.

“I had a good attempt on my triple-toe and I pretty much did all the things that are easy for me.

“It wasn’t a great score for me at all, but it managed to get me third.”

The Arctic Edge skater placed 12th in her short program on Saturday and skated to third in her long for sixth overall in novice women on Sunday.

The 14-year-old scored a 26.12 in the short, a 55.51 in the long for 81.63 overall.

By missing the top-four, Pettitt does not advance to Skate Canada Challenge, the final qualifying event for the 2014 Canadian Figure Skating Championships.

“It just makes me want it even more next year,” said Pettitt. “I’ll just work really hard and I’ll get it next year.”

In her short program, Pettitt fell on the triple-toe and on the double-lutz. She also popped her double axel, doing a single instead.

“I had a great practice that morning, so I was really confident going in,” said Pettitt. “I think, overall, I put too much pressure on myself to make it to Challenge this year.

“I got tight in my whole program and didn’t skate like I wanted to skate it.”

Though her season is ending earlier than she would like, it was nonetheless an illustrious one.

Pettitt, who trains at the Kelowna Figure Skating Club in B.C., won silver in novice ladies at the 2013 Autumn Leaves competition in Chilliwack, B.C. last month.

She also won bronze at Summer Skate and at the Sask Skate Invitational in Regina, and gold at a competition in Washington State.

She opened the season with a fifth-place finish at the Super Series Victoria Day competition in May.

“I’m pretty happy with my season overall, leading to this,” said Pettitt.

Pettitt moved up from pre-novice to novice following outstanding results last season. She placed fourth in pre-novice at the Skate Canada Challenge – the division’s national championship – last season in Regina, Sask. Her result marked the highest placement by a Yukoner at the event.

Pettitt qualified for the Challenge nationals after becoming the first Yukoner to win gold at last year’s BC/YT Sectional Championships. She also was the first Yukon skater to win B.C.‘s Super Series, a season-long competition capped by the Sectional championships.

Contact Tom Patrick at

tomp@yukon-news.com

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