Kelowna’s Erik Haaheim placed third overall among 12-year-old athletes at the Can West Short Track Championships in Saskatoon. - Image credit: Contributed Kelowna’s Erik Haaheim placed third overall among 12-year-old athletes at the Can West Short Track Championships in Saskatoon. - Image credit: Contributed

Can West medals for Kelowna skater

Speed skater Erik Haaheim placed third overall at western championship in Saskatoon

The Kelowna Speed Skating Club’s Erik Haaheim made the most of his first experience at the Can West Short Track Championships in Saskatoon.

Coming off a third-place finish at the B.C. Short Track in early March, Haaheim emerged as the top B.C. skater and ranked third overall against the best 12-year-old skaters in Western Canada.

Erik earned silver medals in the 400m and 2000m points race and a bronze medal in the 200m. He also set new personal bests in the 1500m by five seconds and lowered his 400m time from 45.24 to 42.90.

Kenzie Adams also made her first appearance at the Can West and competed in the 12-year-old division. Adams came 10th over-all amassing personal bests in her 200m, 400m and 1500m.

Dylan Baliski (U15) rounded out the trio of skaters competing from the KSSC competing in the U15 age division. Dylan set a season best time in the 1500m and tied his 200m time finishing 15th overall.

On the long track scene, Abigail McCluskey, 20, competed in the Canada Cup Finale in Calgary. She skated to personals in the 1000m and 1500m and garnered a fourth top Canadian finish in the 3000m, fifth in the 1000m, sixth in the 1500m and sevent in the 500m.

Points are accumulated throughout the season to rank skaters for the national teams. According to Nancy Goplen, Abigail’s development coach with the Kelowna Club, she had some strong placements this season “so it won’t be a big surprise if Abigail is not selected for the Next Gen Team. She is one of Canada’s future stars, continuing to improve each season and rank amongst the country’s best skaters,” Goplen said.

The KSSC skaters will begin the 2017-18 preparation with dry land training resuming in late April. Anyone interested in joining the club training is invited to contact the club at www.kelownaspeedskating.com.

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