Ogopogo Freeskate hits ice for 32nd time

The 32nd annual Ogopogo Freeskate competition will have 250 skaters competing at Memorial Arena Friday.

The 32nd annual Ogopogo Freeskate competition will have 250 skaters competing at Memorial Arena Friday.

Of the 250 skaters, 15 will be from the Glengarry Figure Skating Club.

Glengarry coach Alex Sergueev said this season is a transitional period. Last season was about rebuilding the club to get stronger into the future.

“Almost all the skaters are moving up,” said Sergueev. “For some, it’s a bit difficult. It’s not an easy process to compete.”

He added it’s a bit of a jump for skaters to move up to the pre-preliminary and preliminary levels. This season the skaters didn’t compete a lot so for some it will be their first try on the competitive stage.

What Sergueev wants to see are their best individual performances. The focus isn’t on results, but the skaters participating and having fun.

While the club has participated in fewer competitions, they recently received news from Skate Canada that this will be their last Ogopogo Freeskate competition. Skate Canada has aldo reduced competitions in other regions.

Club president Michelle Tuckwood said that Skate Canada wants to emphasize more training than competition. It was just a few months ago that the club received word of the decision as Skate Canada considers the Ogopogo Freeskate an international event as it attracts skaters from the U.S.

“It’s a huge change to what we’re used to doing,” said Tuckwood. “We were a bit shell-shocked.”

Check the Penticton Western New for follow up.

The Ogopogo today is from 10 a.m. to 6:45 p.m. with the local skaters. Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 5:35 and Sunday from 1 to 3 p.m.