June 03, 2014 - 3:08 PM
The best synchronized swimmers in Canada in the 12 & under and 13-15 age groups, as well as athletes with a disability, are set to compete at Synchro Canada’s 2014 Canadian Espoir Championships scheduled for June 3-8 at Kamloops' Canada Games Aquatic Centre (910 McGill Road).
The competition is hosted by the Kamloops Sunrays and Synchro B.C. under the leadership of Synchro Canada. A total of 273 athletes from 23 clubs across Canada (Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Ontario, Quebec and Saskatchewan) are competing.
There’s an international flavour to the competition as well with an athlete entered from the United States.
Among the favorites at the competition is Halle Pratt of the Calgary Aquabelles who took gold in the 13-15 solo event at Synchro Canada’s 2014 Canadian Qualifier Championships this past March and was the 2013 National champion in the event. This will be Pratt’s last Espoir nationals.
“It's exciting and sad at the same time,” she said. “The Espoir championships have always given me a great idea on what I need to work on for the next season. I have made some changes to my routine for this season but mostly I have been working on using my body more and being more expressive with my strokes.
Meaghan Ozikizler and Sabrina Barnes of Granite Synchro in Toronto are hunting for a medal in duet.
“We have increased the intensity of our routine as well as increased our volume training completed per practice,” the pair says. “We feel very motivated by the success we had at Qualifier. We would really love to have that amazing feeling again. Winning Espoir Nationals has been our goal for two years now, and accomplishing this together would be amazing."
At the Canadian Qualifier Championships Toronto’s Variety Village Synchro Club won its first ever team title on the national stage topping the 13-15 category. Now they are expecting more success this week.
“We have been working very hard to improve and perfect the Tiger routine,” said Variety Village team member Grace Klodt. “We have made some major changes to ensure we keep challenging ourselves and raising the bar. Our coaches have been extremely motivational throughout the year helping us achieve so much more than we ever expected.”
Qualifying event for 2014 13-15 National Team
Also on the line are berths to Synchro Canada’s 2014 13-15 National Team scheduled to compete at the 2014 Mediterranean Cup set for September in Greece.
The top-25 in the 13-15 figures event on Wednesday June 4 will advance to Phase 2, a second figures event scheduled for Friday. The top-20 athletes from Phase 2 will meet again on Sunday for Phases 3 and 4 when a 12-member training squad will be selected.
Synchro Canada’s 2014 13-15 National Team Head Coach Lilianne Grenier (Montréal, QC, Synchro Canada’s National Development Coach) with assistant coaches Maude Pelchat (Laval, QC, Calgary Aquabelles) and Jennifer Shaver (Scarborough, ON, Variety Village Synchro Club) will select the 10-member team in a training camp this summer.
Schedule and results for the 2014 Canadian Espoir Championships are available on-line at www.synchro.ca
About Synchro Canada
Synchro Canada is the national organization governing synchronized swimming in Canada. It represents 10 provincial associations, a territorial association, as well as some 150 clubs and 12,000 members across Canada. A member of FINA, the world’s governing aquatic sports organization, Synchro Canada promotes the quest for excellence by developing the athletes, citizens and ambassadors of the sport of synchronized swimming at every level.
For further information, visit Synchro Canada’s Website at www.synchro.ca or follow Synchro Canada on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014