Canada’s Denny Morrison adds two more medals at long track speed skating worlds

Denny Morrison of Fort St. John, B.C., helped Canada to the silver medal in the men’s pursuit after earning a bronze in the 1,500-metres to conclude the long track speed skating world single distance championships.

It was Morrison’s third medal of the competition. Kristina Groves of Ottawa, also added a third medal with a bronze in the women’s 5,000 while Christine Nesbitt of London, Ont., was third in the women’s 1, 000. Canada ended the competition with nine medals, second only to the Netherlands with 11.

In the men’s 3,200-metre pursuit, Canada initially broke the world record in its race clocking 3:38.31 with Morrison, Arne Dankers of Calgary and Justin Warsylewicz of Regina. But the Dutch bettered that in the next pair clocking 3:37.80 to knock Canada to the silver position. Russia was third.

‘’The guys skated really well,’’ said Canadian national team coach Marcel Lacroix of Calgary. ‘’We were under the world record pace on every lap.’’

In the men’s 1,500, Shani Davis of the U.S., earned the gold in 1:42.39 with Erben Wennemars of the Netherlands second in 1:42.80 and Morrison third in 1:42.88. Morrison also won silver in the 1,000 on Saturday.

‘’Denny achieved his goals this weekend,’’ said Lacroix. ‘’We knew he could skate at this level and he showed he could do it consistently. He gained a lot of maturity this season in all aspects of his racing. He put a lot of pressure on himself here. It’s a big step in his career.’’

Steven Elm of Red Deer, Alta, was fifth and François-Olivier Roberge of St-Nicolas, Que., seventh.

In the women’s 1,000, Ireen Wust of the Netherlands was the victor in 1:13.83 with Anni Friesinger of Germany second in 1:14.26 and Nesbitt third in 1:14.44. Groves was sixth and Rempel ninth.

‘’This is the time of year I wanted to have a strong race and I achieved that,’’ said Nesbitt. ‘’I improved all areas of my skating this season. This is the first year I’ve had this kind of success and I learnt a lot about dealing with the pressures and expectations.’’

In the women’s 5,000, Martina Sablikova of the Czech Republic clocked a world record 6:45.61 for the win with Claudia Pechstein of Germany second and Groves third. Michele d’Amours of Ste-Foy, Que., was 12th.

Groves also won bronze in the 1,500 and gold in the pursuit with Rempel and Nesbitt.

Cindy Klassen of Winnipeg won Canada’s other two medals here with silver in the 1,500 and bronze in the 3,000.