Pascal Dion, Courtney Sarault & Kim Boutin reach podium at World Cup Short Track in Hungary

Dion wins first career 1500m medal; Boutin earns first international podium since 2019-2020 season

DEBRECEN, HUNGARY - Canada's short track speed skating team got off to an impressive start at the World Cup in Debrecen, with Pascal Dion, Courtney Sarault and Kim Boutin each earning a medal on Saturday.

Montreal's Dion rose to silver medal position out of an eight skater field in the men's 1500m final, winning his first career World Cup medal in the distance. The 27-year old (2:13.048) jostled back-and-forth at the front of the pack with eventual gold medalist Ren Ziwei of China (2:12.910), with Korea's Park Jang Hyuk (2:13.125) finishing a close third.

Veteran Charles Hamelin (Sainte-Julie, Que.) was also in medal contention in the 1500m but finished sixth in what was his first A Final of this World Cup season.

Canadian women would add two additional medals to Saturday's haul.

Sarault battled her way to bronze in the 1500m. The 21-year old, who raced from the back of the pack for much of the race, passed a pair of skaters in the final lap to reach the podium. Her time of 2:23.118 placed her behind Yubin Lee of South Korea (2:23.101) and Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands (2:23.009).

It marks the Moncton native's second medal in the distance this season, having also captured silver at last month's event in Beijing.

Boutin followed that up with a bronze medal of her own in the women's 500m, returning to the international podium for the first since capturing five consecutive World Cup gold medals in the distance during 2019-2020 campaign.

The Sherbrooke native (42.860) was in the lead for the first three laps of the race thanks to a quick start but was overtaken by Schulting (42.566) and Italy's Arianna Fontana (42.801) after her blade slipped in one of the straights. Seventeen year old Canadian Florence Brunelle (Trois-Rivières, Que.) finished just off the podium in fourth-place, surpassing her previous career-best of 11th, which she earned at each of the first two World Cups of the season.

Canada's relay teams ended the first day of competition on a positive note, advancing to their respective A Finals with quality performances in the semifinals.

The World Cup in Debrecen concludes on Sunday with the finals in the 1000m, as well as the men's, women's and mixed gender relays. The races will be live streamed on CBC Sports beginning at 8:00am ET.

Quotes

  • “I had a lot of fun racing today. It felt nice to see how fast I could go once again. I felt great on the ice and had some good starts. In the final, I lost my balance a bit – my left blade slipped out from under me in the straight – and then I made contact with Arianna [Fontana]. Those are things that happen. I'm happy with the way I approached my race; in years past I was much more nervous and had less fun racing in those kinds of situations."- Kim Boutin

  • “A first career medal in the 1500m is exceptional, especially a silver medal. Some of my best results in the past few years were in the 1500m. I had quite a few fourth-place finishes, so it feels good to finally win a medal in this distance. I knew I had the legs to do it but just needed the execution to be there.” – Pascal Dion
  • “I feel that I lacked a bit of confidence going into this race. I was thinking about the strategy that I used in the 1500m at the last World Cup, which probably wasn’t the best idea. I knew the A Final was going to a very difficult and fast race and I wish I would’ve made a move towards the front a little bit sooner because I think it would have helped me finish in a better position. I really had the legs at the end, but unfortunately, I was stuck in a bad spot near the back. It’s too bad, but I’m still proud of my result and how I managed to overcome all of the chaos." – Courtney Sarault

Results

Women's

  • Courtney Sarault 3rd in 1500m
  • Danaé Blais 28th in 1500m
  • Camille de Serres-Rainville 43rd in 1500m 
  • Kim Boutin 3rd in 500m
  • Florence Brunelle 4th in 500m
  • Alyson Charles 7th in 500m

Men's

  • Pascal Dion 2nd in 1500m
  • Charles Hamelin 6th in 1500m
  • Steven Dubois 38th in 1500m
  • Steven Dubois 11th in 500m
  • Jordan Pierre-Gilles 15th in 500m
  • Maxime Laoun 18th in 500m

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