Owing to less snowfall and cloudy weather conditions in Shimla, Gurgaon has got the chance to host the 13th National Ice Skating championship will now be held at iSKATE ice rink in Ambience Mall from Thursday.
Over 300 ice skaters will compete for a spot in next year’s winter Olympics at Pyeongchang, South Korea.
The competition was originally scheduled to commence from January 4 at a natural rink in Shimla. But freezing of ice on the skating rink depends upon weather conditions.
However, less snowfall has led to a rise in temperature in Shimla forcing officials of the Ice Skating Association of India (ISAI) to shift the competition to Gurgaon on Wednesday morning.
“Over the past few weeks, Shimla has received less snowfall. In addition, prevailing cloudy conditions led to a rise in temperature. A thick coating of ice, essential for ice skating, was not present at the rink and, hence, the competition was relocated to Gurgaon,” Bhuvnesh Banga, secretary general of ISAI and secretary of Shimla Ice Skating club, said.
The championship at the all season ice ring in Gurgaon will see participants competing in two fields— figure skating and short track speed skating.
Participants reached Gurgaon on Wednesday evening from Shimla and will begin their competition from 7.30 am, Thursday. The competition will conclude on Friday.
Figure skating events will be held for individuals, duos and groups performing a combination of aerobatics and spins with skates on ice.
Short track speed skating involves multiple skaters skating on an oval ice track and the first skater to cover the track length is declared the winner.
Boys and girls from the age of 10 to 17 will compete in different categories inside a 450 square feet ring.
The competitors will be judged by Jagraj Singh Sahney, former national figure skating champion; international skater Vasudev Tandi and two-time Asian Games bronze medal winner Anup Kumar Yama, who is also a gold medallist at the 2013 World Artistic Roller Skating Championship.
They had also assisted competitors during the six-day preparation camp for the national championship held at iSKATE from December 26 to January 1.