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Young skaters inspired by Olympics

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first_imgNORWALK – For a moment, Anahid Modrek was not a 15-year-old from Whittier flying across the ice at the Norwalk Ice Arena and launching into the air for a perfect double-loop jump – she was Olympic skater Sasha Cohen. Clad in black and wearing her lucky yellow gloves, Modrek says she draws inspiration from watching the Winter Olympics on television. “Seeing people like Sasha Cohen, who is very strong and artistic with great technique, … skate makes me want to do better,” Anahid said, adding she dreams of being selected for the Olympic team “someday.” Cohen, the U.S. national champion, will be skating in her first event, the women’s short program, Tuesday. The women’s free skate finals will be held Thursday. Every time the Winter Olympics roll around, business at the ice rink perks up, “especially when we have good American skaters in the games,” said Walter Hypes, who has been coaching skaters since 1974. “Every four years when the Olympics happen, it picks up,” he said. “I remember the year Dorothy Hamill skated in the Olympics. All the coaches had waiting lists after that.” At the Norwalk rink this week, children bundled in winter coats, gloves and scarves, executed jumps or took tentative first steps on the ice. One tiny girl’s mom cheered as she performed a small jump. Traci Veltre, who heads the skating school at the Norwalk rink, expects the numbers of skaters to swell during the Olympic women’s figure skating competition. “It’s the most prestigious event at the Games, and it makes people want to try it,” said Veltre. “Once they do, they stay with it for years.” [email protected] (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3028 AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECasino Insider: Here’s a look at San Manuel’s new high limit rooms, Asian restaurant160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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