Perfect first day of qualification for the Canadian women at the ISU World Cup Short Track stage in Shanghai

Shanghai, China, November 9, 2017 – The Canadian women's provisional Olympic team in short track speed skating qualified all six spots available for the final rounds of the 500m and 1500m events, Thursday, on the first day of qualifying at the ISU World Cup stage to be held until Sunday in Shanghai, China.

In the women's 500m, Jamie Macdonald from Fort St. James, B.C., Kasandra Bradette from Saint-Félicien, QC, and Kim Boutin from Sherbrooke, QC, all qualified for the quarterfinals, while Marianne St-Gelais from Saint-Félicien, QC, Valérie Maltais from Saguenay, QC, and Macdonald did the same in the 1500m to earn spots in the semifinals. The final rounds for both distances will be held on Saturday.

“I'm happy to have this opportunity to regain some confidence and help Canada win spots at the Olympics”, said Kasandra Bradette, who is skating in an individual event this weekend after taking part solely in the relay at the second World Cup stage of the season, held in Dordrecht, in the Netherlands. “My goal is to skate well, which will help me get back in top form.”

“The first race of a World Cup stage is always a bit more stressful, so I went with an approach that was sure to work,” said Marianne St-Gelais. “I focused on staying ahead of the pack, on staying out of trouble if trouble were to come up… I'm happy with how it went and I'm now looking forward to Friday' races.”

On the men's side, Samuel Girard from Ferland-et-Boilleau, QC, and Charles Hamelin from Sainte-Julie, QC, both qualified for the 500m quarterfinals.

In the 1500m, Girard and Hamelin were eliminated after both finishing sixth in their heats. Charles Cournoyer from Boucherville, QC, will be the only Canadian to skate in the 1500m semifinals.

In the 500m, Cournoyer fell during the heats, as did Hamelin in the 1500m, and was eliminated.

“I would have preferred to stay on my feet in the 1500m, I was doing well but I ran into some bad luck,” pointed out Charles Hamelin. “The skater on the inside fell and he brought me down along with him. I lost an opportunity to win a medal in the 1500m, but I made it up in the 500m. I had a good race in the preliminary round (1st in his heat), then in the second race I finished second but came up with a fast time, so I should be well positioned at the starting line for Saturday's quarterfinals.”

Racing will continue on Friday, with qualification heats in the 1000m and relay events.

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

TODAY’S CANADIAN RESULTS

500m W
Jamie Macdonald: 2nd in the heats and will take part in the quarterfinals Saturday
Kasandra Bradette: 2nd in the heats and will take part in the quarterfinals Saturday
Kim Boutin: 3rd in the heats and will take part in the quarterfinals Saturday (one of the six fastest third skaters)

500m M
Samuel Girard: 2nd in the heats and will take part in the quarterfinals Saturday
Charles Hamelin: 2nd in the heats and will take part in the quarterfinals Saturday
Charle Cournoyer: 5th in the heats and eliminated

1500m W
Marianne St-Gelais: 1st in the heats and will take part in the semifinals Saturday
Jamie Macdonald: 1st in the heats and will take part in the semifinals Saturday
Valérie Maltais: 1st in the heats and will take part in the semifinals Saturday

1500m M
Charle Cournoyer: 3rd in the heats and will take part in the semifinals Saturday
Samuel Girard: 6th in the heats and eliminated
Charles Hamelin: 6th in the heats and eliminated

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

- 30 -

For information:
Patrick Godbout
Communications & Media Relations Manager
Speed Skating Canada
Email: pgodbout@speedskating.ca
Phone: 514 213-9897
Website: www.speedskating.ca  
Facebook: www.facebook.com/SSC.PVC
Twitter: www.twitter.com/SSC_PVC