One gold & three bronze for Canada at short track speed skating World Cup

Canada denied South Korea a golden sweep of all 10 events this weekend with an impressive victory in the men’s 5,000-metre relay Sunday to conclude the first stop on the short track speed skating World Cup circuit.

The Canadian also added three bronze as they earned their first medals this season. But the Koreans were brilliant and a bit lucky too as some crashes worked to their advantage in winning nine of the 10 events including all eight individual races.

In the men’s relay, Canada with Jean-Francois Monette and Jonathan Guilmette of Montreal, François-Louis Tremblay of Boucherville, Que., and Mathieu Turcotte of Sherbrooke, Que., earned the win clocking seven minutes and 00.689 seconds despite two falls. Canada is the reigning two-time Olympic champion in the men’s relay.

"Our depth really shines through in the relay," said Canadian national team coach Guy Thibault of Montreal. "Our top five guys are all top class while the other countries have one or two big superstars then after that it drops off. I was really impressed how we cameback today."

China was second in 7:01.785 and Japan was third in 7:22.798. South Korea was disqualified.

In the men’s 3,000, Hyun-Soo Ahn of South Korea completed a golden sweep of all four individual events clocking 5:00.322. Se-Jong Oh of South Korea was second in 5:00.615 and Turcotte gained third spot at 5:01.052.

In the men’s 1,000, Ahn won in 1:30.632 with Jun-Hyung Yeo of South Korea second in 1:30.776 and Tremblay third in 1:30.963.

"Francois-Louis and Mathieu were our stars this weekend," said Thibault. "We know these two guys can go and win medals for us on a consistent basis."

Canada’s third bronze came in the women’s 3,000-metre relay. South Korea notched another gold in 4:20.210, China was second in 4:20.382 and Canada with Alanna Kraus of Abbotsford, B.C., Amélie Goulet-Nadon of Laval, Que., Tania Vicent of Montreal and Annie Perreault of Rock Forest, Que., were third in 4:27.483. The Canadians were in the thick of the race but fumbled an exchange on the 10th lap and fell behind.

"We need to fine-tune some aspects of our racing but there’s no doubt we can race with the Koreans and the Chinese," said Goulet-Nadon.

The second stop on the circuit is next weekend in Beijing.

Sunday’s results at a World Cup short track speed skating competition at Chuncheon, South Korea:

MEN

1,000: 1. Hyun-Soo Ahn, South Korea, 1:30.632; 2. Jun-Hyung Yeo, South Korea, 1:30.776; 3. Francois-Louis Tremblay, Boucherville, Que., 1:30.963; 4. Se-Jong Oh, 1:32.143; 5. Mathieu Turcotte, Sherbrooke, Que., 2:19.566.

Also: 10. Jonathan Guilmette, Montreal, 1:34.844.

3,000: 1. Ahn, 5:00.322; 2. Oh, 5:00.615; 3. Turcotte, 5:01.052; 4. Fabio Carta, Italy, 5:04.792; 5. Guilmette, 5:06.594; 6. Yingbao Liu, China, 5:07.741; 7. Tremblay, 5:09.750; 8. Nicolas Franceschina, Italy, 5:10.191

5,000 relay: 1. Canada (Jean-François Monette, Montreal; Guilmette; Tremblay; Turcotte), 7:00.689; 2. China, 7:01.785; 3. Japan, 7:22.798.

Overall: 1. Ahn, 136 points; 2. Oh, 42; 3. Carta, 29; 5. Tremblay, 23; 6. Turcotte, 20; 8. Guilmette, 10.

Team ranking: 1. South Korea, 221; 2. Canada, 181; 3. Italy, 166.

WOMEN

1,000: 1. Eun-Kyung Choi, South Korea, 1:36.585; 2. Xiaoying Liu, China, 1:36.700; 3. Ha-Ri Cho, South Korea, 1:37.351; 4. Min Jin Joo, South Korea, 1:37.882.

Canadians: 5. Amélie Goulet-Nadon, 1:42.261; 8. Tania Vicent, Montreal, 1:44.188; 9. Alanna Kraus, Abbotsford, B.C., 1:39.778.

3,000: 1. Choi, 5:16.485; 2. Evgenia Radanova, Bulgaria, 5:18.430; 3. Tianyu Fu, China, 5:19.106.

3,000 relay: 1. South Korea, 4:20.210; 2. China, 4:20.382; 3. Canada (Kraus; Goulet-Nadon; Vicent; Anni Perreault, Rock Forest, Que.), 4:23.965; 4. Japan, 4:27.483.

Overall: 1. Choi, 102; 2. Joo, 53; 3. Radanova, 34; 7. Goulet-Nadon; 8. Kraus; 12. Vicent.

Team ranking: 1. South Korea, 227; 2. China, 194; 3. Canada, 173.