Duncan’s Cecilia Faustino was front and centre last month as Canada’s best figure skaters competed to represent the country at the 2018 Olympics.
A member of the Duncan Skating Club for the last 13 years and a Grade 12 student at Duncan Christian School, Faustino served as a Victory Ceremony participant at the 2018 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships in Vancouver on Jan. 7-14.
Faustino served as a medal-bearer and carried flowers, helped with ice patching and fixing holes and edges when the ice was flooded after every two groups of skaters, and collected stuffed toys and other items thrown from the crowd to give to the skaters. Faustino and her teammates needed to be prepared all the time in case of a patching emergency.
“I think it was a great opportunity to be standing in front of those skaters,” Faustino said. “They’ve worked so hard for the opportunity to skate with the best from across Canada.”
Canada’s top novice, junior and senior skaters were competing in Vancouver. Faustino is a competitive skater in the Star 10 level, slightly below novice, and can land all her double jumps except the double axel.
“I have a long and a short program, like the senior women do,” she explained.
Faustino would have liked to compete at the level with the skaters at nationals, but has missed the window.
“I would have needed to land all the doubles at a younger age,” she related.
Regardless, Faustino will keep working at it. After she finishes school, she plans to take a year off before she starts university and skate with Disney on Ice.
“I don’t want to finish skating yet,” she said.
In addition to skating, Faustino has been helping the Duncan Skating Club as a program assistant since she was nine and is going through the program to become a registered coach, which she hopes to do as a part-time job.
Faustino’s favourite part of skating is landing jumps, which takes a lot of work.
“I love being in the air,” she said. “It’s like you’re frozen in the moment. Landing big jumps is thrilling.”