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The Broadmoor Skating Club honors medalists

Unprecedented number of champions and medal winners came from club.

Dalilah Sappenfield With 2008 U.S. National novice pairs champions Brynn Carman and Chris Knierim.
Dalilah Sappenfield With 2008 U.S. National novice pairs champions Brynn Carman and Chris Knierim. (Jo Ann Schneider Farris)

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By Jo Ann Schneider Farris, special to icenetwork.com
(02/07/2008) - Every year, the Broadmoor Skating Club in Colorado Springs, Colo. has members win medals at U.S. Championships. This year, however, an unprecedented number of champions and medal winners were Broadmoor athletes.

These results made 2008 a year to celebrate. So, on Wednesday, Feb. 6, the Broadmoor Skating Club held a special "Welcome Home Celebration" for its national competitors. The event took place at the Colorado Springs World Arena Ice Hall's lobby; the entire club and local media were invited to attend the event. Many distinguished people in figure skating were present, among them were world champion Jill Trenary, and world and Olympic coach Kathy Casey.

A presentation was given by the club's president, John LeFevre, and after a short speech, he introduced the coaches in each ice skating discipline who had been responsible for the medal winners and champions.

First introduced was Patty Gottwein-Britton, the coach of the 2008 U.S. National junior dance silver medalists Piper Gilles and Timothy McKernan. She introduced her students, and then went on to recognize the many additional coaches who helped the team medal at championships. These included Olympic champion Christopher Dean, coaches Ryan Jahnke and Erik Schulz, ballet instructor Corrine Kuhl-Reed, and choreographers Tom Dickson and Catarina Lindgren.

Next, Mr. LeFevre introduced Dalilah Sappenfield, he highlighted his introduction by pointing out that there has not been a coach since Ron Ludington, who had so much success in the pair skating field. Sappenfield is the coach of 2008 novice pairs champions Brynn Carman and Chris Knierim, 2008 novice pairs silver medalists Brittany Chase and Andrew Speroff, 2008 junior pairs champions Jessica Rose Paetsch and Jon Nuss, and 2008 U.S. national senor pair champions Keauna McLaughlin and Rockne Brubaker.

In addition, she took five other pair teams to Saint Paul.

Finally, Tom Zakrajsek introduced his skaters: 2008 national novice ladies champion Marissa Secundy, 2008 national junior ladies champion Alexe Gilles, 2008 U.S. national silver medalist Rachael Flatt, 2008 U.S. national pewter medalist Jeremy Abbott, and 2008 U.S. national junior men's silver medalist Brandon Mroz. Additionally, the coach recognized not only all of his national skaters, but the many other coaches who had contributed to the success of the champions. Some of those coaches included Christi Krall, who brings Dartfish technology to the World Arena; Eddie Shipstad, who spends endless hours with Zakrajsek's competitors on the moving pole jump harness; Becky Calvin, Becky Bradley, and Erik Schulz who teach with Zakrajsek, and choreographers Tom Dickson and Catarina Lindgren. He also recognized world champion Jill Trenary who teaches many of his students when he is away.

Every national competitor present was introduced, and given a certificate signed by the Mayor of Colorado Springs. The parents of the skaters were recognized, and the Colorado Springs World Arena staff was thanked.

After the ceremony, those in attendance spent some time enjoying refreshments. Two huge cakes were made to celebrate; one cake was custom designed to include a group photo of the competitors, and the other included the Broadmoor Skating Club's logo. The 2008 U.S. Championships will certainly be remembered as a great and memorable competition for the Broadmoor Skating Club.