Kelowna rink suits Ice Breakers

The Salmon Arm Ice Breakers continued to rack up the placings and shave seconds off their times

Need for speed: The Ice Breakers’ Lincoln Thurgood takes the lead in the 200-metre race on his way to a first-place finish at an event in Kelowna over the weekend.

The Salmon Arm Ice Breakers continued to rack up the placings and shave seconds off their times at the Kelowna Speed Skating Club’s Invitational and Zone 2 BC Winter Games Qualifier on Saturday.

With a large contingent, the team also included coach Rick Hofmann, who delighted the younger skaters by lacing up his skates. He dominated the masters races, placing first in all his contests.

In the BC Winter Games U12 qualifying races, Jack Verdurmen posted three personal best times in his 200, 400- and 500-metre distances, while teammate Bradley Hlina had a personal best in the 400-m, but had falls in both the 200- and the 500-m interclub race.

For the younger age groups, new skaters Mackenzie Keating notched four third- place finishes with personal best times in his 50-m and 100-m. He was pushed in his 200-m race, slowing him down.

Lincoln Thurgood raced to two first-place finishes and two personal bests in the 50- and 200-m distances.

Zachary Watkins set new personal best times in the 50-, 100- and 200-m distances, while his older brother Alexander set new marks in his 200- and the challenging 800-m race.

Callie Belway had some dominating performances in her races, with three first place finishes and a new top time for her 200-m distance.

Marissa Dollack held on to win her  800-m race, and picked up a second and two third- place finishes, notching a personal best in the 300-m.

Jett Nash posted three personal best times in the 800-, 100- and 200-m races, and took half a second off his times in the two sprint contests.

Daniel Hlina left the rink with three first-place finishes in the 200-, 400- and 500-m, placing fifth in the endurance 1200-m.

The distance race proved to be Pheonix Nash’s forté, as he won a fast-paced 1200-m with a time under three minutes. He also posted best times in the 200-, 400- and 500-m.

After starting at the back of the pack in fifth place, Jack Isaac stunned the crowd by passing the entire field in the eighth and ninth laps of the 12-lap race to win his 1200-m race. This was his first 1200-m ever in competition.

Devyn Hughes took a full two seconds off her personal best times in the 200-m and 400- m races. Pacing was an issue in her first-ever 1200-m race and she wound up with a fourth-place finish.

Aila Norlin, who was racing in a highly competitive group, posted her fastest times ever in all of her four races.

Alex Seal was placed in the performance division to challenge with some of the fastest skaters on the ice that day and earned two second-place finishes and two thirds.


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