June 27, 2017
Scott Nabata wasn’t the only Kamloops Gymnastics and Trampoline Centre athlete to post an exceptional performance at nationals.
Drew Kanigan captured bronze all-around and in the floor exercise at the Canadian Championships in Artistic Gymnastics in May.
“It felt great,” Kanigan said. “I put a lot of time and effort into it and it felt great that it paid off.
“I’m not going to take it easy from there. I’d like to come in first next year.”
The 14-year-old gymnast, who commutes daily from Merritt to Kamloops to train at the KGTC, has long considered Nabata his mentor and is starting to put up results like his 21-year-old teammate.
Nabata, who won bronze in pommel horse at nationals, has seen some exceptional growth from the athlete seven years his junior and is excited for what Kanigan’s future holds.
“He’s fearless, a great listener and always taking my advice and actually thinking about it,” Nabata said. “He’s super committed to being the best athlete he can be.
“I kind of look at Drew as a role model, even for myself.”
Kanigan, who specializes in the parallel bars and has a special appreciation for the high bar, will also be participating in summer training camps, with an eye to the fall competition season.
He’s aiming to increase the difficulty level of his routines and striving for better execution scores.
He hopes to be named to Canada’s national team next year, following in the footsteps of the athlete he has long tried to emulate, Nabata.
“He’s a great mentor and an amazing athlete,” Kanigan said. “My coach, Mr. T [Hisayoshi Takahashi], is a super good coach.
“It’s nice to have two references both saying different things so you can combine them.”