Morning Star Staff
The Vernon Vortex will enjoy the Christmas break and resume training soon in preparation for the B.C. Long Track Speed Skating Championships, Jan. 17-18, in Fort St. John.
The Vortex stormed into the recent Kelowna Invitational and recorded some new personal best times in 65 per cent of the races.
Nate Benn and Mattias Isobe each had four personal best times, while Daniel Hall, Declan Fitzpatrick and Lauryn Eddy each accomplished three new time standards.
Laura Hall had two official personal best times and had another taken away by a questionable disqualification incurred while defending her track in the 3,000-metre points race that she skated extremely well.
The Vortex demonstrated admirable teamwork on and off the ice, working together in the races and being vocal supporters when not on the ice.
Fitzpatrick and Lauryn Eddy each achieved one out of the required two times for qualification to the Provincial Short Track Championships in Vanderhoof, in March.
Benn, Laura Hall and Daniel Hall were able to fully qualify to compete in the Championships for this season by achieving both qualifying times.
Coach Mike Hall fully expects that Eddy, Fitzpatrick and a few others will complete their qualifications, making this the largest team to qualify for the championships from Vernon in many years.
Said coach Hall: “The progress that this young team is making is impressive and getting noticed across the province. With continued work and tactical improvements, they are setting up an interesting second half of the season to start in January.”