Kelowna Speed Skating Club's Connie Kapak won five gold medals at the Canada West Short Track Championships in Canmore.

Kelowna Speed Skating Club's Connie Kapak won five gold medals at the Canada West Short Track Championships in Canmore.

Five gold medals for Kapak

Kelowna Speed Skating club member cleans up at meet in Canmore, while teammate Jesse Keca wins national age class title

It was a golden weekend for Connie Kapak at the Canada West Short Track Speed Skating Championships.

The Kelowna Speed Skating Club member and Vernon product won five gold medals in as many events last weekend in Camrose.

Competing in the 13-year-old category, Kapak repeated her medal harvest from last year.

Kapak also won both the B.C. long track and B.C. short track titles this season, and won a bronze medal in the 3000m at the Canadian Long Track Championships in February.

Kapak commutes from Vernon twice a week to train with Nancy Goplen, Okanagan Regional Training Center Coach and fellow ORTC skating members.

“A few years ago, Connie started off training once a week with me,” said Goplen. “She has lots of talent but needed to learn how to skate more efficiently.  This year, I have exposed Connie to some long track training and high performance level competitions in Calgary.  It has been a balancing act because she is still young and also competes in two different levels of competition—her own age division and a higher level against older skaters.  We are also working on the technical elements that will pave the way for more success in the future.”

Meanwhile, Jesse Keca, 18, a product of the Kelowna Speed Skating Club, was crowned the over 17-year-old age category champion at the Canadian Age Class Short Track Championships in Montreal.  Keca was sidelined for part of the season with a knee injury but bounced back with gold medals in the 1000m and 3000m, silver in the 500 and bronze in the 1500m.  Keca is also active playing hockey for Douglas College in Montreal while training at the Montreal Regional Training Centre for Speed Skating.

Other result for KSSC athletes included Nathan Locke, 12, placing 12th at the Canada West Short Track Championships in the 12-year-old division.

Chris Neykov finished 14th overall in the under-18 category at the Canadian Age Class Short Track Championships.

 

Kelowna Capital News