The 2023 Artistic Skating Nationals Championships wrapped up on Friday following six days of competition in Bunbury, West Australia.
The Championships saw Australia’s best Artistic Skaters compete across different disciplines and age groups, bringing together the community for one fantastic event.
Event organiser, Joe Kilgallon described the event as a special occasion.
“It was like being on camp with all your best friends. Everyone and everything was close,” said Mr Kilgallon.
“The atmosphere in the venue was electric. From Dance and Free Skating to Figures, it felt like a special occasion.”
Mr Kilgallon recognised the location as being a key factor in the success of the event.
“Taking the Championships to the South West proved to be such a great decision.
“The community were fascinated by our sport and the City of Bunbury, the South West Sports Centre, the local rink and the wider community opened their arms to us,” he said.
The feeling amongst skaters who competed was mutual with Preliminary Skater Emma Goronski sharing the environment fostered friendliness and support.
“This year’s Artistic Nationals was so memorable and so incredible,” Goronski said.
“To see so many amazing skaters from all over the country come together was unbelievable. The atmosphere was so supportive, many friendships were made throughout the week.”
For many skaters, the event brought about notable achievements and podium finishes.
Bernadine Geary and her husband Kevin are just one example of skaters who achieved a podium finish, taking home the gold medal for the Masters Couple Dance category.
Geary shared her delight in their special achievement, “As with many adults, life often interferes with other activities, so when you get a field of great competitive skaters, winning a gold medal is a huge achievement.
“However, the most satisfying of all was actually being able to skate and doing so with some beautiful friends from other states and from New Zealand that we have got to know over the years.
“This year was probably the best year for Nationals since pre COVID19. The program was very mixed so there were more participants and spectators at the venue which made it so much more interesting and exciting.”
While skaters enjoyed their time on the rink performing, many competitors thanked the efforts of the volunteers and those who were rinkside who lended a helping hand.
“The behind the scenes people such as the volunteers, marshalls, coaches and officials were incredible,” said Goronski.
“They truly made the week and it simply wouldn’t have been possible without them.”
The Artistic Skate community now looks forward to the World Skate Oceania Championships and Pacific Cup in Queensland in August, and the 2023 Artistic Skating World Championships in Ibague, Columbia in September.
For final results from the 2023 Artistic Skating National Championships click here.
See photos of all our 2023 Artistic Skating National Champions on Facebook HERE, thanks to Bernadine Geary Photography.