Kim Boutin wins gold in 500m & Marianne St-Gelais collects bronze in 1500m at ISU Short Track World Cup in Shanghai

Charles Hamelin and Valérie Maltais finish fourth in their respective races

Shanghai, China, November 11, 2017 – Kim Boutin won the gold medal in the 500m while Marianne St-Gelais earned bronze in the 1500m, finishing one spot ahead of her teammate Valérie Maltais, Saturday, at the ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating stage to take place until Sunday in Shanghai, China.

Kim Boutin, from Sherbrooke, QC, finished first in the women's 500m ahead of Italy's Arianna Fontana, who was second, and Russia's Sofia Prosvirnova, who came in third, to collect her fourth medal of the 2017-2018 season on the World Cup circuit – and her first gold. Boutin won silver in the 500m race held in Dordrecht, the Netherlands, during the second stage of the season, after she came up with two silver medals (1500m and 1000m) the previous week in Budapest, Hungary.

“I didn't race like I wanted. That's in part because I tried some (new) things today, so I learned some valuable lessons and that's a positive,” said Boutin. “But I'm happy with the result. I was confident and I came up with great times (per lap), which allowed me to pull ahead.

“My goal today was to play around with my speed and I was a little surprised when (Fontana) overtook me in the first straightaway. The lesson here is that I need to give it my all at the start,” added Boutin, who will skate in the 1000m final rounds on Sunday.

Also in Saturday's 500m, Jamie Macdonald from Fort St. James, B.C., and Kasandra Bradette from Saint-Félicien, QC, both were eliminated in the quarterfinals.

In the women's 1500m, Marianne St-Gelais from Saint-Félicien, QC, earned bronze by finishing behind two South Korean skaters, Suk Hee Shim and Min Jeong Choi, who were respectively first and second, and ahead of her Canadian teammate Valérie Maltais, who was fourth.

Marianne St-Gelais therefore came up with her second medal this season. She won gold in the 500m held at the World Cup in Dordrecht.

“That was my first 1500m this season, so I was a little nervous before the race because I felt a little rusty in terms of my strategic approach,” said St-Gelais. “But my goal today was just that, to regain some confidence in that distance in terms of strategy. It worked out well, so there was no reason to worry, I realized that the foundation was still there. I skate a lot by instinct and it ended up being a good race.”

For Valérie Maltais, finishing fourth was her second best result so far this season. She won silver in the 1500m race held last month in the Netherlands and finished fifth in six events so far this season.

“I still had good speed towards the end of the race, which is a notable improvement compared to many of my others races,” said Maltais. “So I'm happy with the result. »

Marianne St-Gelais and Valérie Maltais nonetheless admitted that they would have preferred ending up both on the podium.

“I'm a little disappointed because during the part of the race where Marianne and I were second and third, I knew Choi was coming and that part of my role was to block her. But I missed,” said Maltais. “That's why I showed a little frustration at the end of the race.”

“We tried to block the South Korean skaters as best we could, but we still have some work to do on that front,” said St-Gelais. “But otherwise, I think we managed the race well, considering we had two Canadians in the final.”

“It's a good thing to see that we can have good finals with two skaters,” added Maltais. “We came up with a very strategic race, which hasn't always been the case in the past.”

Jamie Macdonald finished second in the 1500m B final, Saturday, to end up eighth overall.

Charles Hamelin 4th in the 500m
The top male Canadian skater of the day was Charles Hamelin from Sainte-Julie, QC, who was fourth in the 500m. He finished behind China's Wu Dajing, who won the race, and South Korean skaters Yi Ra Seo, who was second, and Do Kyoum Do, who ended up third.

“It was a high-paced race, which reduces the chances of overtaking,” said the veteran Canadian skater, who nonetheless came up with his best result of the season so far in the 500m distance, also having won a bronze medal in the 1500m held in the Netherlands. “I tried to overtake, but it didn't work. Things weren't moving much up front, everyone was just following one another… So it would have taken a perfect race on my part, which wasn't the case.”

Samuel Girard from Ferland-et-Boilleau, QC, was third in Saturday's 500m B final, to end up seventh overall.

In the men's 1500m, Charle Cournoyer from Boucherville, QC, was eliminated in the semifinal round.

Both Canadian relays qualified for Sunday's finals. The men's relay, comprised of Charles Hamelin, Samuel Girard, Charle Cournoyer and Pascal Dion from Montreal, QC, won its semifinal heat, Saturday, while the women's relay, comprised of Marianne St-Gelais, Valérie Maltais, Kim Boutin and Kasandra Bradette from Saint-Félicien, QC, was second in its semifinal heat to earn a spot in the A final.

The 1000m final rounds and the relay finals are slated for Sunday.

More details are available on Speed Skating Canada's website at www.speedskating.ca.

TODAY’S CANADIAN RESULTS

500m W
Kim Boutin: gold medal (final ranking: 1)
Jamie Macdonald: 3rd in the quarterfinals and eliminated (final ranking: 10)
Kasandra Bradette: penalty in the quarterfinals and eliminated (final ranking: 18)

500m M
Charles Hamelin: 4th in the A Final (final ranking: 4)
Samuel Girard: 3rd in the B Final (final ranking: 7)
Charle Cournoyer: 5th in the heats and eliminated (final ranking: 31)

1500m W
Marianne St-Gelais: bronze medal (final ranking: 3)
Valérie Maltais: 4th in the A Final (final ranking: 4)
Jamie Macdonald: 2nd in the B Final (final ranking: 8)

1500m M
Charle Cournoyer: 6th in the semifinals and eliminated (final ranking: 16)
Samuel Girard: 6th in the heats and eliminated (final ranking: 35)
Charles Hamelin: 6th in the heats and eliminated (final ranking: 36)

Relay F
Canada: 2nd in the semifinals and will take part in the A Final Sunday
(Kim Boutin, Kasandra Bradette, Marianne St-Gelais, Valérie Maltais)

Relay M
Canada: 1st in the semifinals and will take part in the A Final Sunday
(Charle Cournoyer, Pascal Dion, Samuel Girard, Charles Hamelin)

About Speed Skating Canada
Speed Skating Canada (SSC) is the governing body for long track and short track speed skating in Canada. Founded in 1887, SSC is comprised of 13 provincial and territorial associations. Speed Skating Canada is committed to Challenge and Inspire Canada to Thrive through the power of Speed Skating. SSC recognizes and values its outstanding volunteers who give freely of their time and expertise. It also celebrates the 63 Olympic medals won by Canadian athletes since 1932, as well as the coaches, officials and other dedicated individuals who helped them on their journey. www.speedskating.ca

Speed Skating Canada would like to thank its sponsors:

Premium partner: Intact Insurance
Funding partners: Government of Canada (Sport Canada), Own The Podium, Canadian Olympic Committee
Official On-Ice High Performance Apparel: Li-Ning
Long Track Team Sponsor: KIA
Official Suppliers: Auclair, USANA
Official Technical Equipment Supplier: Nagano Skate
Sport Development Partners: Winsport Canada, Calgary’s Olympic Oval, University of Calgary, Institut national du sport du Québec, Government of Quebec, Canadian Sport Institute-Calgary, City of Montreal, Quebec City, Conseil du sport de haut niveau de Québec

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