Canadian Women will be seeded third in Sochi in Team Pursuit

Canada has qualified a women’s Pursuit Team for the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games in long-track speed skating. A Canadian trio finished fifth on Sunday in the final international event before the Winter Olympic Games. Brittany Schussler of Winnipeg, Ivanie Blondin of Ottawa and Kali Christ of Regina posted a six-lap time of 3:02.81. They missed a bronze medal by 0.77 of a second.
 
“We will be seeded third for the Olympics,” Speed Skating Canada’s long-track program director Sean Ireland said.
 
Canada’s roster for the Team’s Pursuit in Sochi will be decided following the Intact Insurance Speed Skating Trials in Calgary Dec. 28-Jan. 3. The fourth skater who usually races the Team Pursuit for Canada, 2010 Winter Olympic 1000m champion Christine Nesbitt, was not in Berlin this week.
 
The Canadian women were fifth at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver and won silver in 2006 in Turin, Italy.
 
The Canadian men secured a spot in the pursuit event for Sochi here on Saturday.
 
Individually, Kaylin Irvine of Calgary continues to post strong results in the 1000m. The 23-year-old recorded her first World Cup top 10 with a 1:16.07, improving on her previous top World Cup finish, 12th in Astana, Kazakhstan seven days earlier on Dec. 1. “I felt like things I’ve been working on in practice finally came to together for a whole race today.” Irvine said. “I’m very happy with it.”
William Dutton of Humboldt, Sask., placed 20th in the A 500m.
 
Regina’s Marsha Hudey was 16th in women’s B 1000m. It was Hudey’s first World Cup race at that distance after six starts in the 500m in her first international season.
Jordan Belchos of Toronto finished 10th in the men’s B 5000m, followed by Mathieu Giroux of Pointe-aux-Trembles, Que., 18th, and Lucas Makowsky of Regina 20th.
 
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