Mike Ireland of Winnipeg wins bronze medal at speed skating World Cup

Mike Ireland of Winnipeg rebounded from a subpar showing last week to win the bronze medal Saturday in the men’s 500-metres at a long track speed skating World Cup competition.

Gerard Van Velde of the Netherlands won the gold medal clocking 35.61 seconds at the outdoor venue. Dmitry Lobkov of Russia was second in 35.63. Ireland earned his third medal in the event this season in nine races tying for third with American Casey Fitzrandolph at 35.82.

Ireland and his pair Masaaki Kobayashi of Japan needed four tries to start the race after a couple of false starts and flash disturbances from a nearby photographer.

“I’m just glad to get back on the podium,” said Ireland, with two victories this season in the 500. “I was starting to get frustrated. I had really had some bad luck last week and I wasn’t on my game. When you’re outdoors it’s really important to have a strong finish.”

Jeremy Wotherspoon of Red Deer, Alta., was fifth in 35.92 and still has a comfortable lead atop the 500 World Cup standings with 780 points. Ireland is third in the standings at 505.

Brock Miron of Cornwall, Ont., won the B final in 36.15 which was the eighth best time of the day while James Monson of Calgary was sixth.

Other Canadian results Saturday:

-In the women’s 3,000, Clara Hughes of Glen Sutton, Que., was fifth, Kristina Groves of Ottawa 12th and Tara Risling of Medicine Hat, 19th. In the B final, Kerry Simpson of Melville, Sask., was 11th

In the men’s 1,500, Jay Morrison of Fort St. John, B.C., was 17th . In the B final, Steven Elm of Red Deer was third, Jean-René Bélanger of Sherbrooke, Que., eighth, Arne Dankers of Calgary 10th and Peter Volcic of Kitchener, Ont., 21st.

In the women’s 500 B final, Krisy Myers of Calgary was third, Kim Weger of Regina fifth and Danielle Wotherspoon of Red Deer. Alta., 10th.

Competition ends Sunday.