An amateur sports club in Sheffield is hosting a world class ice skating event at the iceSheffield Ice Arena, with 500 skaters due to arrive in the city this week!
The sport of synchronized skating is gaining popularity around the world, with the Winter Olympic committee considering its inclusion and TV programme ‘Dancing On Ice’ featuring the world synchro champions Marigold IceUnity on the show in February.
Hosted by the rink’s own synchro club, Sheffield Synchronized Skating Academy (SSSA), the inaugural Steel City Trophy competition has attracted teams of up to 20 skaters each from all over England, Scotland, Wales, Norway and Italy as they line up to compete in eight different categories on 8th and 9th March.
SSSA Head Coach Amanda Hembrow-Jones explains why this is such an important event for Sheffield and for British Ice Skating:
“The iceSheffield venue offers fantastic facilities for teams of skaters, with an Olympic-sized competition rink and spectator seating for up to 1,500 visitors.
“Most skating competitions involve solo skaters or couples – so one of the main challenges for synchronized skating competitions is finding enough space for them all to get changed! We’re lucky to have the English Institute of Sport just across the road, so we’ve been able to book their facilities for changing, warm-ups and meals, and we’ll be live video streaming the competition across to the EIS so the skaters don’t miss out on seeing any of the live action.
“The UK governing body for our sport, British Ice Skating, have been really supportive about the event, as have the iceSheffield management team. We’ve put a lot of planning into the competition, thanks to the hard work of everyone involved and especially the parents of our Sheffield skaters – and if it’s a success this year we will look to make it even bigger and better in 2020. We already have interest from teams across Europe, USA and Canada, who will be watching us this year.
“Our aim is for the Steel City Trophy to become a recognised International Skating Union (ISU) competition and a regular date in the synchro calendar for teams all over the world. We’ve already confirmed the date for 2020 - it will be held on the same weekend in March next year and will be ideal preparation for teams entering the World Synchronized Skating Championships, which are held in April each year.”
Amanda is hoping the local community will get behind the event and come out to support all the skaters:
“We have some spectator tickets available for both days, and the competition itself runs from 2pm to 6pm on Friday 8th and Saturday 9th March. Tickets are just £10 each including booking fees, and can be purchased from www.sivtickets.com or the box office at 0114 256 5656.”
More information about the Steel City Trophy can be found on the SSSA website at www.sheffield-synchro-skating.co.uk/SteelCityTrophy or by contacting the Committee by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also join the event on Facebook.