Kim Weger takes gold at Canada Cup

Ladies from Saskatchewan took the top 2 spots in the ladies 500m with Kim Weger taking gold with a time of 39.40 seconds, and Kerry Dankers finishing in second place, 0.01 seconds behind Weger. Alberta’s Kelsey Duffield took third place.

“I’m taking this meet as a progression towards the World Cup. The races were good, although I believe that my time could have been better - perhaps it was fatigue. I hope that some rest should help. In addition, I was skating a bit too high; by skating lower and being more aggressive in the first lap I should improve my time,” explained Weger.

“My next competition is going to be the World Cup in Russia later this month. I will focus on having the right knee angle, improving my turns and getting more into the ice. In all, I am very satisfied with this weekend and think of it as training for the big context in Russia.”

In the ladies’ 1000m, Dankers was at the top of the podium thanks to a time of 1:18.20 minutes. Dankers was followed by Duffield in second place. Natalya Rybakova ended in third place with a time of 1:19.15 minutes.

Still on the ladies’ side, Madeline Martin of Ontario won the 5000m with a time of 7:30.00 minutes. Martin was followed by Keara Maguire of British Colombia. Alberta’s Brianne Tutt finished third, only 7.31 seconds behind Martin.

First place in the men’s 500m was clinched by Quebec’s Vincent Labrie with a time of 35.14 seconds. Albertan Brock Miron took second place with a time of 34.37 seconds, and third place was awarded to Matt McLean of Manitoba.

While still nursing an important injury, Miron recorded his second win of the weekend in the men’s 1000m. Mykola Makowsky of Saskatchewan finished second with a time of 1:09.90 minutes and Quebecer Alexandre Garant took third place, finishing 0.21 second behind Makowsky.

“It’s been very long and arduous process to return to pre-injury form. I’ve been working with my coaches and medical team to improve things, little by little. My race times are getting a lot better. It’s the first time that I’ve skated so well since I hurt myself. This weekend hasn’t been about performance, but about execution and the technical aspect of the race,” said Brock Miron.

"This weekend was pretty good because, I wasn’t focused on racing the distance in the fastest time, but I still skated pretty fast. For the next couple of months, I will be training pretty hard and getting my ankle back to a 100%. With the Olympic trials still about a year away, my Olympic dreams are not in jeopardy.”

Ontario’s Jordan Belchos won the 10000m, setting yet another personal best with a time of 13:36.32. Andrew Godbout of Ontario, who raced the 10000m at a World Cup in the fall, finished in second place. Manitoba’s Stephan Waples, an up-and-coming skater with the Olympic Oval program, also skated a personal best to secure third place with a time of 13:57.55 minutes.

With many personal best times recorded this weekend, this first Canada Cup was a success. Many members of the National and Development Teams had very good results while many junior and up-and-coming skaters have left a lasting impression such as Richard Maclennan, William Dutton, Madeline Martin, Anastasia Buscis and Waples, to name a few.