US Junior Short Track Championships
January 24th and 25th in the Wasatch Mountain Range was no shortage of what short track is popular for, ADRENALINE. The racing took twists, turns, highs, and lows like your favorite thrilling novel. From one moment, the race may be set in stone with a casual pass on the outside, BOOM, the field takes off with a daring inside pass with legs and lungs scorching in the mountain air.
ASE athletes were in the middle of it all and had a chance to welcome a great group of athletes from around the country to work with coach Katherine. Betsy Richards had a breakout weekend of racing. It was as if she flicked a switch in the days leading up to the competition and hasn’t slowed down since. She and Gunnar Olsen both placed 7th and 8th overall, yet again, displaying the progress that has become a habit at ASE. Last year they both didn’t make the top 16 at juniors, this year was a very different storyline. Reflecting on a previous post, I would say they are well on their way to “one million wishes.”
Danielle Amos has overcome tremendous adversity to reach the starting line at juniors with a concussion and ankle injury that put her in the ER. She laid down the challenge to race and do her despite best despite imperfect circumstance. These are the moments that teach us the most and the strength she gained will serve her well into the future.
National team member and former ASE teammate, Lexi Burkholder, pre-qualified for Junior Worlds by making the Senior World team. Lexi is an excellent role model on and off the ice and we wish her all the best in her bright future ahead!
The ASE long track athletes came out swinging! Ethan Cepuran and Michael Koenig progressed through the heats to solid racing and personal bests! Displaying their long track tenacity in the longer races like the 1500m and raw speed in the 500m. Once again, displaying the importance of both sports complimenting overall skating and athletic development.
Of the athletes who with ASE abroad: Anna Quinn skated to a strong PB in her 500m. Raul Zaorski had a HUGE PB in his 1000m. Adam Horeth grew stronger each race and surprised himself with a PB as well. Gerard Rux has been making gains all season with personal bests stacking up as he gets more training and racing in his legs. Mia Krone has overcome a lot this season to take the line at juniors and skate strong with more ahead! Lena Swirczek’s guts and drive for technical improvement showed each race as a step forward and finishing to new bests. Alex Brewer, always smiling, skating with a finesse that allows him to make to high speed passes and blocking tracks to move his racing forward and great momentum built for the remainder of the racing season.
NEXT: HEARTLAND RACE in CHAMPAIGN, IL FEBRUARY 14-15!