Roseville, Minn.—Edmonds man Bruce Guthrie was named new Age Class National Champion in the Masters 60 to 64 age class at this year’s U.S. Long Track Speed Skating Age Class National Champions, held in Roseville, Minnesota on February 3 through February 4.
The annual event, put on by the National sanctioning body for speed skating and held at the Guidant John Rose Minnesota Oval this year, pits competitive speed skaters from across the country, ranging in age from 11 to 80, through four events; a 500 meter time trial, a 800 meter pack style, a 1,000 meter pack style, and a 3,000 meter pack style – Guthrie placed first in each one of these challenges.
Long track speed skating events take place on a 400-meter oval. Currently there are only four of these in the United States located in: Salt Lake City, Utah, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Butte, Montana, Lake Placid, New York, and Minneapolis, Minnesota.
In addition, Guthrie organized a three-person team of 60-year-old master skaters to compete in a six lap Team Pursuit event, a rare event typically reserved for master skaters, where they finished in unofficial age class record time.
For the last 14 years Guthrie has trained for this event at the Lynnwood Ice Center on 196th Street in Lynnwood. He is also co-founder of the Whatcom Speed Skating Club in Bellingham, Washington, where he coached for 12 years from 1994 to 2006, and coached Special Olympics Speed Skating for 8 years while assisting in bringing the sport to the State Special Olympics Winter Games in Wenatchee.
Since the Pacific Northwest does not have a currently have a long track skating facility, Guthrie trained on a short track. Short track speed skating was adapted in the 1960’s to use a standardized hockey rink. To this day both large track skating and short track skating are Olympic events.
Guthrie previously competed in the Age Class Long Track Nationals event in 2002 in Minneapolis, and again in 2003 in Butte, Montana, competing in the 40-year-old category and placing fourth both years.
Bruce Guthrie is a Level Two Speed Skating Coach and a level 2 certified PSIA Ski Instructor. He lives in Edmonds with his wife and three children.