HAGERSTOWN —While Kelsey Helman was skating for inline gold for the U.S. Team at the Mondiali In-Line 2012 world championships in Italy, one of her teammates was cheering her on from home.
Whitney Garvin, a 2009 graduate of North Hagerstown, skated with Helman on the Fast Forward Speed team at the Indoor National Championships in Lincoln, Neb., taking bronze medals in the 200-meter time trial and the 500-meter sprint. She also took silver with Helman in the 4 Lady Relay.
Unfortunately it was not enough to qualify for the world championships.
“I didn’t qualify by a handful of points,” said Garvin. “But the only thing I could say to Kelsey and the U.S. Team is good luck and have fun.”
Like Helman, Garvin made her way to Nationals thanks in large part to the coaching of Patty Leazier.
“(Patty) got us prepared mostly through two-a-days,” Garvin said. “We did a lot of drills based on what we would see at Nationals. We just repeated the drills over and over until we got it. She also put us on a healthy diet.”
Garvin continues to improve her skating, hoping to take that next step in the future.
“I want to make it to the U.S. Team. I want to have my chance to go to worlds. I think it would be a great experience,” said Garvin. “We’re going to stick with more weightlifting and I’ll continue to skate hard and push myself to get to that level.”
The sport of inline skating remains widely unknown locally despite the success of Garvin and Helman, though Garvin hopes to spread exposure in the community.
“We’re just getting it known the more we talk about it,” Garvin said. “People get it confused with roller derby. I say, ‘You know what Apolo Ohno does? I do it on wheels.’ We just want to get inline skating out there.”