Speed Skating Canada announces its final team for the 2017 ISU Long Track World Single Distance Championships

Calgary, January 19, 2016 – Canada will send a total of 16 athletes to the 2017 ISU Long Track World Single Distance Championships to be held February 9-12 on the official ice of the 2018 Olympic Games in Gangneung, South Korea, as a test event, one year prior to the start of the Olympic competition.

Among them, individual medalists at the World Cups held last fall, Ted-Jan Bloemen of Calgary, AB, Ivanie Blondin of Ottawa, ON, and Vincent de Haître of Cumberland, ON, will lead the Canadian team.

Some of these athletes qualified following their performances at the Fall World Cups, while others, following the Canadian Single Distance Championships held January 3-6 in Calgary.

Prior to the Canadian Single Distance Championships, six men and four women had already earned one or more of the available spots at these World Championships after being the top Canadians in the various events as per the ISU Final Qualification Ranking Lists: Jordan Belchos of Markham, ON, Ivanie Blondin of Ottawa, ON, Ted-Jan Bloemen of Calgary, AB, Alex Boisvert-Lacroix of Sherbrooke, QC, Vincent De Haître of Cumberland, ON, Laurent Dubreuil of Lévis, QC, Marsha Hudey of White City, SK, Heather McLean of Winnipeg, MB, Alexandre St-Jean of Québec, QC, and Brianne Tutt of Airdrie, AB.

The following skaters have been added following their performances at the Canadian Single Distance Championships: Ben Donnelly of Oshawa, ON, William Dutton of Humboldt, SK, Kaylin Irvine of Calgary, AB, Olivier Jean of Lachenaie, QC, and Isabelle Weidemann of Ottawa, ON.

Four-time Olympic medalist Denny Morrison of Fort St. John, B.C., also has been named to the Canadian team as a discretionary choice for the team pursuit event.

At the World Single Distance Championships, champions are crowned in the following men’s and women’s events: 500m, 1000m, 1500m, 5000m, mass start and team pursuit, as well as women’s 5000m and men’s 10,000m.

Last year in Kolomna, Russia, Canada won four medals. Ivanie Blondin became World Champion in mass start, Ted-Jan Bloemen won silver in the 10,000m, Alex Boisvert-Lacroix got a bronze medal in the 500m, and Bloemen, Belchos and Donnelly climbed on the third step of the podium in team pursuit. Since the first event in 1996, Canada has won 76 medals.

Smaller team at World Cup #5
Prior to the World Single Distance Championships, Canada will send four athletes to World Cup #5 which will be held January 27-29 in Berlin, Germany: Ivanie Blondin on the women’s side, as well as Ted-Jan Bloemen, Vincent De Haître and Laurent Dubreuil on the men’s side.

In Berlin, Laurent Dubreuil will look to qualify a second spot for Canada at the ISU World Sprint Championships, schedules February 25-26 in Berlin. Vincent De Haître already have the first spot while the women will have one spot.

Members of the Canadian national team for 2017 ISU World Single Distance Championships

WOMEN                                                             
-BLONDIN, Ivanie (Ottawa, ON) – 1500m, 3000m, 5000m, Mass Start
-HUDEY, Marsha (White City, SK) – 500m
-IRVINE, Kaylin (Calgary, AB) – 500m, 1000m
-McLEAN, Heather (Winnipeg, MB) – 500m, 1000m
-TUTT, Brianne (Airdrie, AB) – 1500m
-WEIDEMANN, Isabelle (Ottawa, ON) – 3000m, 5000m

MEN
-BELCHOS, Jordan (Toronto, ON) – 5000m, 10 000m, Mass Start
-BLOEMEN, Ted-Jan (Calgary, AB) – 5000m, 10 000m
-BOISVERT-LACROIX, Alex (Sherbrooke, QC) – 500m
-De HAÎTRE, Vincent (Cumberland, ON) – 1000m, 1500m
-DONNELLY, Ben (Oshawa, ON) – 1500m
-DUBREUIL, Laurent (Lévis, QC) – 500m, 1000m
-DUTTON, William (Humboldt, SK) – 500m
-JEAN, Olivier (Lachenaie, QC) – Mass Start
-MORRISON, Denny (Fort St. John, B.C.) – team pursuit
-ST-JEAN, Alexandre (Quebec City, QC) – 1000m

More details are available at Speed Skating Canada's web site at www.speedskating.ca.

About Speed Skating Canada
Speed Skating Canada (SSC) is the governing body for competitive long track and short track speed skating in Canada. Founded in 1887, the association is comprised of 13 provincial and territorial branches representing more than 14,000 individual members, and counting. SSC believes that sport is an apprenticeship for life and prizes respect for others, integrity, excellence of effort, as well as a safe, healthy environment. 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.

SSC is proud to be affiliated with partners that share the same vision and values including our premium sponsors Intact Insurance, as well as our funding partners, the Government of Canada, Own the Podium, and WinSport Canada.

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For information:
Kerry Dankers
Long Track Program and Communications Coordinator
Speed Skating Canada
Email: kdankers@speedskating.ca
Phone: 403-589-8960
Website: www.speedskating.ca  
Facebook: www.facebook.com/SSC.PVC 
Twitter: www.twitter.com/SSC_PVC

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