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COUNTDOWN TO THE GAMES: Skating for personal bests

Team P.E.I.’s figure skating squad for the 2019 Canada Games is comprised of, from left, Cindy Stavert, Emma Hynes, Katie Stavert-Bernard, Krista MacKay, Elizabeth MacKay.
Team P.E.I.’s figure skating squad for the 2019 Canada Games is comprised of, from left, Cindy Stavert, Emma Hynes, Katie Stavert-Bernard, Krista MacKay, Elizabeth MacKay. - Contributed

Islanders excited to see where their scores will land them in Red Deer

SUMMERSIDE, P.E.I. —

Canada has seen its fair share of historic moments in the figure skating world. From Kurt Browning to Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, we have been fortunate to watch athletes like these inspire the next group of talented skaters. 

The Canada Games later this month in Red Deer, Alta., will likely be a platform used to catapult the next great Canadian figure skaters towards their journey of stardom.
Two Island athletes looking to make their mark are Emma Hynes and Katie Stavert-Bernard. The 15- and 14-year-olds, respectively, have been putting in the work and expect, above all else, to come home with new personal-best scores. 
Coaches Cindy Stavert and Krista MacKay are confident in their athletes’ abilities because of their hard work on and off the ice. The group have been working together for two years now and are excited to travel west and let the Games begin.
Feb. 24 will mark the start to competition and the end of Emma and Katie’s training for the Canada Games.
During the past two years the two competitors have been training on average five times per week. Not to mention their off-ice training, which can include staying mentally and physically fit for competition.
A major milestone along the way for Katie and Emma was attending a training centre in Ontario for about five weeks this past summer.
Without a doubt the training left an impact on the skaters and they will be able to put their hard work to the test this weekend at the Robert McCall Memorial Competition in Dartmouth, N.S. The annual event will showcase several figure skaters from around the Maritimes. It will be the last opportunity to compete against some of the nation’s best before Red Deer.  Team P.E.I. is looking forward to using the weekend as a stepping stone towards the big week at the end of month.
Katie and Emma were selected to the official Team P.E.I. Figure Skating contingent in December and haven’t looked back. Their goal is simple, do their best and see where that lands them. It would be a dream for any athlete to land on the podium but focusing on their personal bests allows Katie and Emma to compete against themselves instead of worrying about the competition.
They certainly have two coaches to admire and who have both helped instill this useful approach to competition. Cindy, who is Katie’s grandmother, competed for P.E.I. at the Winter Games in 1979 in Brandon, Man. She is a national certified coach who is making her first trip to the Games in co-charge of a team. 
Krista, who will be alongside Cindy, is a provincially certified coach who competed for P.E.I. in the 1983 Canada Games in Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean, Que. She is a triple gold skater who brings a wealth of knowledge and experience for Katie and Emma to feed from. 
The 2019 Games will be a culmination of experienced coaching and hard-working figure skaters. Team manager Elizabeth MacKay has been pivotal in making the upcoming competition a reality for Katie and Emma and says she “knows how much they are looking forward to achieving their personal bests and meeting other athletes from across the country.”
For more information on Team P.E.I. and the 2019 Canada Games, stay tuned for our Countdown to the Games articles and be sure to follow Team P.E.I. on Facebook and Twitter.
#IsleBeReady

Roster
A look at Team P.E.I.’s figure skating squad for the Canada Games.
Skater Emma Hynes
Skater Katie Stavert-Bernard
Coach Cindy Stavert
Coach Krista MacKay
Manager Elizabeth MacKay


Jared Murphy is a sport co-ordinator with Sport P.E.I. and will be assistant chef de mission for Team P.E.I. during Week 2 of the 2019 Canada Games.

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