Community Clubs Elite Amateur Sport Skating

Eric Loucks earns Lifetime Achievement Award as he hits 50 years as Minto Skating Club coach

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Canada’s Eric Loucks and Natalia Dubova coaches for the figure skating team Bourne and Kraatz seen here at the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics. Photo: CP/COA

By Stephen Priel

The exceptional 50-year coaching career of Minto Skating Club instructor Eric Loucks was commemorated recently by the Ottawa Sports Awards, which named him one of its 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award winners.

In his roughly half-century of coaching, Loucks has taken athletes to the Olympic Games and World Championships, mentored Canadian champions and passed down the enjoyment derived from figure skating to countless others.

“He is truly an excellent representative of Ottawa’s proud figure skating history,” the Sports Awards wrote in their announcement of the latest honourees.

Loucks said he was overjoyed when he learned he was being given the award.

“It’s actually an honour to be recognized,” noted Loucks, who became just the third Canadian figure skating coach to receive NCCP Level 5 certification in 2010.

Loucks’ career included crossovers with many well-known Canadian skaters, including four-time Canadian silver medallists and 1998 Olympians Chantal Lefebvre and Michel Brunet. He coached them with Minto, and joined them in Nagano for their 19th-place performance in ice dancing.

Asked to describe his coaching career in a single word, Loucks chose “rewarding.”

A former Minto athlete himself, the coaching vet pointed out that something he loves about skating is that “you’re always learning everyday.”

Despite a tradition of many high-level ice dance teams coming out of Minto, the humble Loucks said that his influence at the club was simply due to his “presence being there over the years.”

He also said he’s confident that Minto’s coaches, including executive director Darryl Van Luven, will carry on the legacy of success that he’s left behind.

Read more on the Ottawa Sports Awards Lifetime Achievement Award winners via:

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