Qualifications on Day 1 at World Cup in China

Qualifications on Day 1 of the Samsung ISU Short Track World Cup in China

SHANGHAI, China
– On the first day today of the Samsung ISU World Cup #4 at the Shanghai Oriental Sport Mansion in Shanghai, China, all 12 Canadian skaters moved on to at least one of their quarterfinal or semifinal races on Saturday and Sunday. Today’s qualifying rounds included two 1,000-metre races, the 500 metres, the 1,500 metres and men’s relay quarterfinals.

Saturday’s races will see the 1,500-metre race, the first of two 1,000-metre competitions and the men’s and women’s relay semifinals. On Sunday, there will be the 500-metre and second 1,000-metre races, as well as the relay finals.

Today’s race notes: Liam McFarlane and Jessica Gregg each had the fifth fastest times in their 500-metre races, skating in times of 41.506 and 44.390 seconds, respectively. Valérie Maltais won her two races (1,000 and 1,500 metres). Michael Gilday won his three races (1,000 and 1,500). Charles Hamelin and Francois Hamelin won three of their four races (two 500 and two 1,000) and were second in the other. Only Gregg, Guillaume Bastille and Charle Cournoyer will have to qualify through repechage rounds in one of their two distances.

Here is how Canada’s skaters fared today in the preliminary and qualification rounds for their two races:

Marie-Ève Drolet of Laterrière, Que. (2nd 1000; 1500): She qualified directly for Sunday’s quarterfinals of the second 1,000-metre race. She was third in her qualifying heat, but was advanced as one of the fastest thirds; She was second in her qualifying heat to advance to the 1,500 semifinals on Saturday.
Jessica Gregg of Edmonton (500; 1st 1000): She qualified directly for Sunday’s 500-metre semifinals after placing second in her qualifying heat; She was third in her qualifying heat for the first 1,000-metre quarterfinals and will have to compete through Saturday’s repechage to advance.
Jessica Hewitt of Kamloops, B.C. (2nd 1000; 1500): She was second in her qualifying heat for the second 1,000 metres to advance to Sunday’s quarterfinals; She was advanced to the 1,500-metre semifinals after being interfered with in her qualifying heat.
Valérie Maltais of La Baie, Que. (2nd 1000; 1500): She won her qualifying heat for the second 1,000 metres to advance to Sunday’s quarterfinals; She won her qualifying heat to advance to the 1,500 semifinals on Saturday.
Marianne St. Gelais of Saint-Félicien, Que. (500; 1st 1000): She advanced to Sunday’s 500-metre quarterfinals after winning in her qualifying heat; She placed second in her qualifying heat to advance to Saturday’s first 1,000-metre quarterfinals.
Caroline Truchon of Chicoutimi, Que. (500; 1st 1000): She was advanced to the Sunday’s 500-metre quarterfinals after being interfered with in her qualifying heat; She won her qualifying heat to advance to Saturday’s first 1,000-metre quarterfinals.

Guillaume Bastille of Rivière-du-Loup, Que. (2nd 1000; 1500): He won his qualifying heat to advance to the second 1,000-metre quarterfinals on Sunday; He was third in his qualifying heat for the 1,500-metre semifinals and will have to compete through Saturday’s repechage to advance.
Charle Cournoyer of Boucherville, Que. (2nd 1000; 1500): He was third in his qualifying heat for the 1,500-metre semifinals and will have to compete through Saturday’s repechage to advance; He was second in his heat to qualify for Sunday’s 500-metre quarterfinals.
Michael Gilday of Yellowknife (2nd 1000; 1500): He won his qualifying heat for the second 1,000-metre race to move on to Sunday’s quarterfinals; He won his 1,500-metre qualifying heat to advance to Saturday’s semifinals.
Charles Hamelin of Sainte-Julie, Que. (500; 1st 1000): He qualified for Sunday’s 500-metre quarterfinals after winning his qualifying heat; He won his qualifying heat for the first 1,000-metre race to move on to Saturday’s quarterfinals.
François Hamelin of Sainte-Julie, Que. (500; 1st 1000): He qualified for Sunday’s 500-metre quarterfinals after winning his qualifying heat; He won his qualifying heat for the first 1,000-metre race to move on to Saturday’s quarterfinals.
Liam McFarlane of Medicine Hat, Alta. (500; 1st 1000): He qualified for Sunday’s 500-metre quarterfinals after winning his qualifying heat; He placed second in his qualifying heat for the first 1,000-metre race to move on to Saturday’s quarterfinals.

In the men’s relay quarterfinals today, Canada won their race, beating Hungary and Japan, to move on to Saturday’s semifinals against China, Great Britain and Italy. The men lined-up with Bastille, Charles Hamelin, Francois Hamelin and McFarlane. The women’s team will face China, Hungary and Russia in Saturday’s semifinals.

The World Cup Podium Tracker by Intact Insurance stands at $23,000 (6 gold, 11 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 23rd medal came from Christine Nesbitt, who took the 1,500-metre gold in Kazakhstan on Sunday, Dec. 2. The Club de patinage de vitesse de Charlesbourg will receive $1,000 from the program.