Three members of the Kingston Striders Speed Skating Club participated in the Silver Level Regional Short Track Speed Skating meet held in Gloucester on Saturday December 3, 2011. Alexander Arellano, 9, put in a strong performance in the Golf division, with personal best times in both distances raced and a silver medal finish. Julia Patterson, 9, overcame a first round disqualification to finish 2nd in her 333m final, placing her 4th overall in the Hotel division. Alexander Tessier, 13, also skated personal best times and broke the one-minute mark in the 500m race with a 59.94s finish. Both Arellano and Patterson are currently ranked in the top 10 in their age grouping across Ontario, and have qualified to skate the Gold Level Ontario Cup series.
On January 7, seven youth members of the Kingston Striders Speed Skating Club were in action in Clarington, taking on skaters from the Central-East region of Ontario in a Silver Level ability meet. Bantam standouts Alex Arellano and Julia Patterson narrowly missed the podium, finishing 4th and 5th respectively in their divisions, with each setting personal best times.
Kingston Striders Gold Level skaters Sarah Shires and Sarah Ball participated in the 3rd Ontario Cup on December 17-18, 2011, also in Clarington. Shires was once again a standout in the hotly contested Junior Women’s class, finishing with a Silver medal for her efforts. Sarah Ball finished just out of medal contention in 4th place in the Juvenile Girls’ class, following a collision in the final of her 777m race. Teammate Aliya Howard was unable to compete due to injury, but retains the first place ranking among Midget girls in the province, a position she has held all season. The Gold Level skaters will be back in action in Belleville on January 28-29 for the 4th Ontario Cup, the final competition in the series that qualifies skaters on to Provincial Championships. The Ontario Speed Skating Association’s Provincial Short Track Championships will be held in Kingston on February 25-26.
Several youth members of the Kingston Striders Speed Skating Club have met with success on both long and short track skating ovals across the province in the past few weeks.
On January 21-22, Aliya Howard represented Kingston at the Ontario Provincial Long Track Championship, held at the Brewer Park Oval in Ottawa. Howard had an impressive showing in the girls’ 11-12 year age class mass start event, and also competed in the Junior Women’s Olympic Style Sprints competition, finishing 6th overall. The bronze medalist in the mass start, Howard was then selected to attend the Canadian Age Class Long Track Championships in Fort St. John, British Columbia as a member of Team Ontario. She will represent the province in the Girls’ 11 division at this, her first national-level championship.
The following weekend, January 28-29, Belleville was host to the fourth Ontario Cup of the season, the final qualifier leading up to next month’s Ontario Provincial Short Track Championship. Sarah Shires delivered a fine performance in the Junior Women’s age class, skating a first-place finish in her 1500m final en route to a silver medal overall. Sarah Ball followed suit in the Juvenile Women’s age class, tenaciously racing through all three of her distances to earn a silver medal. Aliya Howard overcame a disqualification in the heats of the 500m to earn the Midget girls' bronze medal. The Pre-Midget competition saw two new Kingston skaters in action: Alexander Arellano for the boys and Julia Patterson for the girls. It was the first provincial-level meet for both skaters and they performed well, with a 6th place finish overall for Arellano and a 9th place finish for Patterson.
On the same weekend, four club members also competed outdoors in the annual Portland Skate the Lake marathon speed skating event. Masters’ skaters Graham Lodge, Alida Moffatt and Stephen Overvelde successfully competed in the 25k, 10k and 5k races, respectively; 9 year old Chloe Goss completed the children’s 5km course. As many as 36 skaters were entered in each event.