Abbotsford’s Richard Ikeda has been named a Provincial Performance Advisor in the discipline of men’s artistic gymnastics for Gymnastics BC.
The non-profit organization made the announcement on Wednesday (Feb. 9).
He was named to the role along with Jason Burnett, who will be a PPA in the discipline of trampoline.
“Bringing their depth of knowledge and experience to our sport organization will act as a catalyst to motivate our athletes, staff, clubs and gymnastics family” stated Nigel Loring, CEO, GymBC. “We have all followed the competitive careers of Jason and Richard and are excited with the experience and passion they bring to our sport”.
Ikeda has been a mainstay on the local gymnastics scene and has been involved for several years with the Abbotsford-based Twisters Gymnastics Club. He is currently the club director.
Ikeda had an outstanding career as an amateur in the sport and competed nationally and internationally from 1990 to 2003.
He was a four-time all-around gold medalist at the Canadian championships (1996, 2001, 2002 and 2003), and added three all-around bronze medals (1993, 1995, 1999) and one silver (2000). In 2003, Richard added gold on the high bar and silver on the parallel bars.
Ikeda also excelled at the 1994 Commonwealth Games in Victoria, taking home a silver on the high bar and a bronze in both the pommel horse and rings. At the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur and he earned silvers in pommel horse and parallel bars. He also competed at the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester.
He went on to compete at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta and ended his career at the World Championships in 2003, helping Canada qualify for the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens.
He was named to the Abbotsford Sports Hall of Fame in 2003.
Since his retirement as a member of the Canadian National team he has transitioned to coaching in the sport for the past 16 years.
Aside from his duties at Twisters, he currently coaches a member of the Senior National Team and has been part of Team BC for many years.
According to Gymnastics BC, the PPA position was created to enhance and motivate the athletes and coaches in BC. The organization stated that they hope that adding Burnett and Ikeda to the GymBC technical team will allow them to share their knowledge with the next generation of athletes.
“I am thrilled to have Richard and Jason on our team,” stated Christine Ormerod, Technical Director, GymBC. “Their combined years of knowledge will bridge the gap in order to provide the highest level of expertise and assist in building out our high-performance program as we look forward to the Canada Winter Games 2023 and beyond.”