Hamelin wins bronze in 1500m

Charles Hamelin wins bronze in 1,500 metres at Samsung ISU Short Track World Cup in Japan
Banff Canmore Speed Skating Club receives $1,000 from Intact Insurance World Cup Podium Tracker

NAGOYA, Japan
– Canadian Charles Hamelin continued his streak of podium results with a bronze medal in the 1,500 metres today at the Samsung ISU World Cup #3 at the Nippon Gaishi Arena in Nagoya, Japan. Jessica Hewitt, of Kamloops, B.C., was the top Canadian female skater finishing in fourth place in the 1,000 metres.

In his five races this season, Hamelin of Sainte-Julie, Que., now has three silver and two bronze medals for a career total of 54 in World Cup action – 18 gold, 16 silver and 20 bronze. He took third place in today’s 1,500-metre final in a time of two minutes and 27.506 seconds, behind two Koreans. Byeong-Jun Kim won the gold medal in 2:27.237, followed by teammate Da Woon Sin in 2:27.340.

“My races went really well. In the semifinal, I felt really good throughout the whole race. I skated a bit in the lead but also with a strategy. I protected my lane well, my position and I had energy until the end. The Russian skater passed me right at the finish line. I qualified (for the final), finishing second," said Hamelin.

“The final went well, too. I felt like I had better energy than in the semifinals, except that my blades didn’t want to glide like I wanted them. I skidded three times through three separate turns. It really took my legs out from me for the last lap. I didn’t have the energy to speed up to pass the Korean in front of me. So I finished third (for the bronze)," added Hamelin. "I’m satisfied with my result, but I had expected more. But I take it with a smile anyhow. I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s 500 metres to show the world what I’m capable of doing at that distance.”

The other Canadians in the 1,500 metres saw Guillaume Bastille of Rivière-du-Loup, Que. take eighth place and François Hamelin of Sainte-Julie, Que. in 10th.

In the women’s 1,500 metres, Edmonton’s Jessica Gregg finished fourth in the B final to place 10th overall. Marie-Ève Drolet of Laterrière, Que., did not finish the B final race after being interfered with, but she took 11th place overall. Marianne St. Gelais of Saint-Félicien, Que., was 14th overall after finishing fifth in her semifinal heat.

In the women’s 1,000 metres, Hewitt took fourth place in the final in a time of 1:32.177. Christie Elise of Great Britain won gold in 1:30.489, followed by Koreans Min-Jung Kim in second place (1:31.371) and Soyoun Lee in third (1:31.443). Valérie Maltais of La Baie, Que., finished sixth overall while Caroline Truchon of Chicoutimi, Que., was 20th.

In men’s 1,000 metres, Liam McFarlane of Medicine Hat, Alta., placed fifth place in the final in a time of one minute and 28.786 seconds. Michael Gilday of Yellowknife finished eighth overall after being penalized his semifinal. Russian Victor An won the gold medal in a time of 1:28.344, with American J.R. Celski taking silver (1:28.417) and Korean Jinkyu Noh with bronze (1:28.772).

Olivier Jean of Lachenaie, Que., did not compete in today’s 1,000-metre race. Jean will not continue competing in this World Cup for precautionary reasons because of concussion-like symptoms. He will proceed through the concussion protocol and be re-evaluated daily. He fell in the Friday’s 1,000-metre preliminary round.

On Sunday, there will be the 500-metre and second 1,500-metre races, as well as the relay finals.

Here is how Canada’s skaters fared today:

Marie-Ève Drolet of Laterrière, Que. (first 1,500 metres): She finished 11th overall. She was fourth in her semifinal to move on to the B final. She fell in the B final and did not complete the race.
Jessica Gregg of Edmonton (first 1,500 metres): She finished 10th overall. She was fourth in her semifinal to move on to the B final, where she placed fourth.
Jessica Hewitt of Kamloops, B.C. (1,000 metres): She finished fourth overall. She placed second in her quarterfinal and semifinal races to advance to the A final.
Valérie Maltais of La Baie, Que. (1,000 metres): She finished sixth overall. She was second in her quarterfinals to advance. She was second in her quarterfinal heat, but third in her semifinals to move on to the B final. With only two skaters, they did not race the B final.
Marianne St. Gelais of Saint-Félicien, Que. (first 1,500 metres): She finished 14th overall. After fishing fourth in her qualifying heat for the first 1,500-metre race on Friday, she won her repechage semifinal race to move on to the main semifinals. She was fifth in her semifinal and did not advance.
Caroline Truchon of Chicoutimi, Que. (1,000 metres): She finished 20th overall. She had to compete through the 1,000-metre repechage to advance to the main quarterfinals. She moved on from the repechage heat, but was third in her repechage semifinals and did not qualify.

Guillaume Bastille of Rivière-du-Loup, Que. (first 1,500 metres): He finished eighth overall. He was fourth in his semifinal to qualify for the B final. He took second place in the B final.
Michael Gilday of Yellowknife (1,000 metres): He finished eighth overall. He was second in his quarterfinals to advance.
Charles Hamelin of Sainte-Julie, Que. (first 1,500 metres): He won the bronze medal. He was second in his semifinal race to advance.
François Hamelin of Sainte-Julie, Que. (first 1,500 metres): He finished 10th overall. After falling from being interfered with, he finished sixth in his semifinal. He was advanced to the B final, where he placed fourth.
Olivier Jean of Lachenaie, Que.: He will not continue competing in this World Cup for precautionary reasons because of concussion-like symptoms. He will proceed through the concussion protocol and be re-evaluated daily. He fell during the 1,000-metre preliminary round on Friday. He was compete in the 500- and 1,000-metre distances.
Liam McFarlane of Medicine Hat, Alta. (1,000 metres): He finished fifth overall. He was second in his quarterfinal and semifinal races to advance to the A final.

Both Canadian relay teams finished third in their semifinals and did not qualify for Sunday’s A final. After taking third place in their race behind Korea and China, Canada will face Hungary, the Netherlands and the United States in the B final. Gregg, Maltais, St. Gelais and Truchon represented the women’s team.

The Netherlands and China finished one-two ahead of Canada in one semifinal. Canada moves onto the B final against France, Japan and Kazakhstan. The men lined-up with Bastille, Gilday, Charles Hamelin and Francois Hamelin.

The World Cup Podium Tracker by Intact Insurance stands at $21,000 (5 gold, 10 silver; 6 bronze). Intact Insurance will award $1,000 in cash and prizes to a local speed skating club with each individual medal win. This season’s 21st medal came today from Charles Hamelin, who won bronze in the 1,500 metres. The Banff Canmore Speed Skating Club will receive $1,000 from the program.