Davis Ortonward, a 12-year-old from Colorado Springs, and his partner Ambrosia Vaske will be performing against eleven other teams for the title in the juvenile dance competition at the 2016 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Saint Paul, Minn. Jan. 15-27.
The championships have been held annually since 1914 to crown champions in ladies, men’s, pairs and ice dancing events and is the nation’s most prestigious figure skating competition. Past winners include Michelle Kwan, Kristi Yamaguchi, Scott Hamilton, Evan Lysacek, Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto, and Meryl Davis and Charlie White.
"I'm so excited to be going to Nationals. I can't believe it is happening to us," said Ortonward.
Ortonward is a seventh grader at Manitou Springs Middle School and has been skating since he was five years old. He trains at the Olympic Training Site at the World Arena, Sertich Ice Center and Colorado Sports Center in Monument, training over 22 hours every week.
Ortonward has eight coaches to work with him in dance (Tiffany Dombeck), freestyle and spins (Janet Champion), choreography (Damon Allen), jumps (Eric Schultz), tests (Rachel Tibbetts) synchro (Alicia Carr and Caitlyn Balch-Burnett) and videographer (Christy Krall).
Ortonward and Vaske will be skating at Colorado Sports Center, 16240 Old Denver Rd. in Monument, Colo. on Jan. 9 at 3:15p.m.; admission is free.