2012 Canadian Single Distance Championship & Canada Cup #2 coming to Calgary Jan. 5-8

2012 Canadian Single Distance Championship and Canada Cup #2 coming to Calgary Jan. 5-8

Competition features Olympic and world medallists

CALGARY – Calgary’s Olympic Oval is hosting, on behalf of Speed Skating Canada (SSC), the 2012 Canadian Long Track Single Distance Championships and Canada Cup #2 from Thursday, Jan. 5 to Sunday, Jan. 8.

The Canadian Single Distance Championships and Canada Cup #2 serve a threefold purpose. The first is the selection for the ISU World Sprint Championships held on from Jan. 28 and 29 at the Olympic Oval, and the winter World Cups. Secondly, these are the qualifications for the regional/continental qualifiers held on Jan. 14 and 15, also at the Olympic Oval. The qualifiers themselves serve to select which athletes will represent Canada at the World All Round Championships in Moscow. Finally, this competition gives points towards each skater to be eligible for the 2012-13 Canadian national speed skating team, which will be selected in April of this year.

Races begin on Thursday with the 1,500- and 3,000-metre distances and continue through Sunday with the 500-metre races. Admission is free for the championship, with races starting at 9 a.m. every day.

Each day is expected to feature a number of high performance races. Thursday, Jan. 5 will feature the men’s 1,500 metres and the ladies’ 3,000 metres. Friday, Jan. 6 will feature the men’s 1,000 metres, the ladies 1,500 metres and the men’s 5,000 metres. Saturday, Jan. 7 will feature the ladies’ 1,000 metres, the men’s 10,000 metres and the ladies’ 500 metres. Finally, on Sunday, Jan. 8 will feature the ladies and men’s 500 metres, and the mass start for both men and ladies.

This championship features nearly 160 of Canada’s top male and female skaters. The women’s entry list includes the return of three Olympic medalists; Christine Nesbitt from London, Ont. and Cindy Klassen and Brittney Schussler both from Winnipeg. The men’s entry list also includes three Olympic medalists; Denny Morrison from Fort St. John, B.C., Lucas Makowsky from Regina and Mathieu Giroux from Points-aux-Trembles, Que.

The Canadian Single Distance Championships and Canada Cup #2 is made possible through the support of Speed Skating Canada, Intact, Apogee, Hudson’s Bay Co., USANA Health Sciences, the Government of Canada, WinSport Canada, The University of Calgary, Hotel Alma, Skyline Roofing, RE/MAX, Calgary Sun, Shine FM, Co-Op, Papa John’s, Weber Academy, Penny Lane, Four Points Sheraton West and the Best Western Village Park Inn.