NSW has won 2009 Duke Trophy by a margin of 88 points, reflecting how close the racing this year was.
Although short track speed skating has given Australia a gold Winter Olympic Games medal courtesy of Steven Bradbury’s historic and very dramatic win in Salt Lake City 2002 the sport rarely features in the news.
However, the sport is well alive with many young skaters coming through the ranks. Short track speed skating calendar features a number of events such as Australian Championships, NSW and QLD Championships, Endurance and Sprint cups and speed skating version of the State of The Origin the Duke Trophy.
This year’s Duke Trophy competition took place at Erina’s Ice Arena with participants from Victoria, Queensland and NSW.
The competition was fierce in all distances and age groups. Seniors tried extra hard as it is the selection time for the Olympics.
Blazingly fast Tatiana Borodulina (QLD) was in close races against Alix-Myra Anderson (NSW). At the same time Marissa Earle (NSW) and Yesl Jung (QLD) have vastly improved their times and are showing real competitive spirit while in younger category Deanna Lockett (QLD) and Mari Deland (NSW) are clearly the stars of the future, with both girls achieving times well beyond their years.
In senior men Lachlan Hay (VIC), Jeremy Beck (QLD) and Noah Essaghir (NSW), who was named most improved skater of the event, provided thrilling, close races, keeping the spectators on the edge every time they stepped on the ice. Elliot Shriane (QLD) and Grant Hester (NSW) staying close to the leading trio.
It is time mainstream media took notice of this sport and its athletes, without having to wait for another “Last Man Standing” medal, as these sportsmen deserve the attention on their merit alone.