Three medals for Canada at short track speed skating World Cup

Steve Robillard of Montreal, François-Louis Tremblay of Boucherville, Que., and Amanda Overland of Cambridge, Ont., all won medals Thursday to open the World Cup final in short track speed skating.

In the men’s 1,500 metres, Olympic champion Apolo Anton Ohno of the U.S., won the gold medal and the season World Cup title at the distance clocking 2:15.353. Robillard was second in 2:15.740 and Tremblay took third in 2:15.855 to shutout the three Korean finalists from the podium.

"It’s a great way to start a weekend," said Robillard, 20, with his second individual medal this season. "I was happy to finally get in the final, I haven’t been in too many this year. But I knew even watching on the sidelines that I could race with these guys. It shows we have a lot of depth on the Canadian team."

Tremblay, a member of the 2002 Olympic champion relay team, is on a hot streak. Last weekend he won three individual World Cup medals, his first World Cup podium finishes in two years.

"It’s pretty neat that I’ve won the four medals in four different distances," said Tremblay, 24. "I’m only doing the 1,500 race this weekend and that’s because I wasn’t satisfied with my 1,500 last week. So I wanted to try again in order to prepare for the world championships (next month). This time it went very well."

Éric Bédard of Ste-Thecle, Que., was eliminated in the quarterfinals and ranked 35th overall. Mathieu Turcotte of Sherbrooke, Que., took third spot for the year in the 1,500 World Cup standings.

In the women’s 1,500, Sun-Yu Jin led South Korea to a 1-2 finish clocking 2:24.225 with Soo-Yeon Yeo second in 2:24.306 while Overland followed in third at 2:25.063. Overland crossed the finish line in fourth but China’s Meng Wang was disqualified for shoving Overland at the midway point of the race.

"I was totally shocked when Wang pushed me like that," said Overland, with her second career individual World Cup medal. "It was a good call by the officials and it’s about time they start calling stuff like that. I felt really good today and I was really on so it’s very pleasing to get the medal."

Anouk Leblanc-Boucher of Montreal and Chantale Sévigny of Sherbrooke, Que., were eliminated in the first round placing 27th and 33rd.

Canada won its opening heats in both the men’s and women’s relays. Racing for Canada in the women’s 3,000-metre relay were Leblanc-Boucher, Overland, Alanna Kraus of Abbotsford, B.C., and Annik Plamondon of Montreal.

For the men in the 5,000 relay was Tremblay, Turcotte, Bédard and Charles Hamelin of Ste-Julie, Que.

Competition continues through to Saturday.