Drolet, Gilday & Hamelin each take silver

Drolet, Gilday and Hamelin each take silver at Samsung ISU Short Track World Cup
The men's relay team takes the bronze medal


CALGARY – Canada added another three individual medals and a relay medal today to its tally at the Samsung ISU World Cup at the Olympic Oval in Calgary. Silver medals were won by Marie-Ève Drolet of Laterrière, Que., and Michael Gilday of Yellowknife in their 1,000-metre finals and Charles Hamelin of Sainte-Julie, Que., in the 500 metres. The men's relay team also won a bronze medal. For the second consecutive day, Canada placed at least one skater in each of the four individual finals. The Canadian team won a silver and bronze medal on Saturday. (Photo right: Marie-Eve Drolet, credit Arno Hoogveld, DayDream Images)

In the men's 1,000-metre final, the finalists kept tight together throughout the race but Russian Victor An took a late lead to win the gold medal in one minute and 24.519 seconds. Gilday came in second just 0.94 seconds behind at 1:24.613 and Yoon-Gy Kwak of Korea was third (1:24.711).

"I trained in Calgary at the Oval for six years, it's like a second home for me. I had friends and family supporting me," said Gilday. "I had a tough race. A former five-time world champion and last year's champion in my race - I beat two out of three of them, so I've got one more to go."

Drolet kept pace with Korean Suk Hee Shim throughout the women's 1,000-metre final, but Shim won in a time of one minute and 29.247 seconds - 0.202 seconds ahead of the Canadian. Min-Jung Kim of Korean won the bronze medal.

"I tried to take every opportunity I had to take the lead, because a 1,000-metre race is not that long and it's pretty fast so you don't want to be too much in the back," said Drolet. "Near the end I was third and then the second girl fell. I then I just tried to catch up to the Korean."

In his second final in as many days, Hamelin won his 51st career World Cup medal, the silver in the 500-metre final in a time of 40.420 seconds. He placed behind J.R. Celski of the United States, who set a world record of 39.937 seconds for the gold medal -- also the first time a skater has gone below the 40-second mark. Fellow American John-Henry Krueger took the bronze medal.

"The race was really fast," said Hamelin. "I had no place to go. I was waiting for opportunities to take the lead with one or two passes. I lost a lot speed when the Russian skater lost his balance in front of me. That really cost me to challenge for the gold medal."

In the women's 500-metre final, Valérie Maltais of La Baie, Que., took off fast at the start but caught an edge and fell in the first corner. She finished fourth, in one minute and 3.769 seconds, behind Meng Wang of China, who took gold in 43.240 seconds, Qiuhong Liu of China (44.038) and Arianna Fontana of Italy (44.236).

In the relay finals, Canada's men's and women's teams finished third and fourth, respectively. The men's team were tracking well throughout the race but with eight of the 45 laps remaining Gilday fell. The Canadians were awarded the bronze medal because of a penalty to the Chinese squad. Korea took the gold medal and the Russia won silver. The women's squad was equally skating well until a fall by Drolet just seven laps into the 27-lap race. Korea won the women's gold, followed by China and Japan.

Here is how Canada’s skaters fared today in the 500 metres and second 1,000-race:

Marie-Ève Drolet of Laterrière, Que.: In the 1,000-metre, she ranked second overall. She was second in both her quarter final and semifinal heats to reach the final. In the final, she won the silver medal.
Jessica Gregg of Edmonton: In the 1,000-metre, she ranked sixth overall. She moved to the semifinals through advancement after getting bumped, but was third in the semifinals.
Jessica Hewitt of Kamloops, B.C.: In the 500-metre, she ranked 35th overall. After failing to qualify directly for the quarterfinals, she skated in the repechage falling in her first heat and was eliminated.
Valérie Maltais of La Baie, Que.: In the 500-metre, she ranked fourth overall. She won both her quarterfinal and semifinal heats, but fell in the first corner off the start of the final to finish in fourth place.
Marianne St. Gelais of Saint-Félicien, Que.: In the 500-metre, she ranked eighth overall. After winning her quarterfinal heat, she fell in the semifinals. Suffering from a concussion, she did not take part in the B final.
Caroline Truchon of Chicoutimi, Que.: In the 1,000-metre, she ranked 13th overall. She placed fourth in the quarterfinals and did not advance.

Guillaume Bastille of Rivière-du-Loup, Que.: In the 1,000-metre, he ranked 19th overall. After failing to qualify directly for the quarterfinals, he won his first repechage heat. He finished second in the repechage semifinal after a collision and fall, and was eliminated.
Michael Gilday of Yellowknife: In the 1,000-metre, he ranked second overall. He won his quarterfinal race and took second place in the semifinals. In the final, he won the silver medal.
Charles Hamelin of Sainte-Julie, Que.: In the 500-metre, he ranked second overall. He won his quarterfinal heat and was second in the semifinals to move on to the final. He won his second medal of the weekend, a silver in the 500-metre final.
François Hamelin of Sainte-Julie, Que.: In the 500-metre, he ranked seventh overall. He was second in his quarterfinal race and then fell in the last turn of the semifinal. He finished third in the B final.
Olivier Jean of Lachenaie, Que.: In the 500-metre, he ranked fifth overall. He won his quarterfinal heat but was third in the semifinals. In the B final, he took the top spot.
Liam McFarlane of Medicine Hat, Alta.: In the 1,000-metre, he ranked eighth overall. After a photo-finish second place in the quarterfinals, he places fourth in the semifinals to race in the B final. He was fourth in the B final.

The circuit continues the following weekend with World Cup #2 in Montreal, from Friday, Oct. 26 to Sunday, Oct. 28. The third World Cup will be held in Nagoya, Japan from Nov. 30 to Dec. 2, and fourth will be in Shanghai, China the following weekend, Dec. 7-9.

With today's three medals, the World Cup Podium Tracker by Intact Insurance for the 2012-13 season stands at $5,000 (4 silver; 1 bronze). Intact Insurance will award $1,000 in cash and prizes to a local speed skating club with each individual medal win. The last two seasons, Intact Insurance awarded more than $50,000 in cash and prizes.