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Mariko Heimbach, a Yokota senior, will represent the school in the Japan Amateur Skating Federation’s national high school championships next month on Hokkaido, in northern Japan.

She’ll compete along with more than 50 others in the championships, scheduled for Jan. 19-23 at the Kushiro Ice Arena. She’ll be listed in the program as being from Yokota American High School.

Skaters registered as “level 5” or above with the Japan Amateur Skating Federation are eligible to compete; Heimbach is registered at “level 6,” equal to U.S. Figure Skating’s senior level.

She’ll skate school figures on Jan. 21 and the short program on the 22nd. If she grades high enough, she’ll perform a full free skate on Jan. 23.

Heimbach began skating at the Akishima Showanomori, about 10 miles outside Yokota’s east gate, nine years ago. In 2006, she qualified for the Japan junior-high championships at Kushiro.

Heimbach, the daughter of Mendel Elementary educational technologist Dr. Rick Heimbach, is the second in her family to compete at elite level in Japan.

University of Hawai’i senior Elliko Heimbach is a former Japan national high school swim champion who qualified for the 2004 Japan Olympic trials. She will graduate in December with school records in the 100 and 200 butterfly and Western Athletic Conference records in the 50 and 100 butterfly.

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