Charles Hamelin, Marianne St-Gelais remain undefeated at Canadian short-track championships
Both skaters have 2 victories at qualifying event
Charles Hamelin and Marianne St-Gelais both came up with their second straight victories on Saturday and remain undefeated at the Canadian senior short track championships in Montreal.
Hamelin, of Sainte-Julie, Que., won the men's 500-metre race in a time of 40.644 seconds, edging out brother Francois Hamelin (40.795) while Samuel Girard (40.838) of Ferland-et-Boilleau, Que., followed in third place.
"This was a medal that came after a lot of hard work all day long," said the four-time Olympic medallist.
"My skate in the final ended being my best of the day. I'm really satisfied with the way I skated in it, for example when I overtook Francois it went perfectly. The rest of the job consisted in controlling the race."
Hamelin, who won the 1,500 on Friday, is aiming for the 1,000 national title on Sunday to complete a sweep of the weekend's races. Girard currently hold the title in the 1,000.
"I see it as another race to win, where I will need to be smart and avoid any ill-advised or risky overtaking, and also conserve energy for the final so that I can battle until the end, with skaters such as Sam [Girard]. I want to go get that 1,000 title back," said Hamelin.
St-Gelais remains dominant
On the women's side, St-Gelais continued to dominate.
After winning Friday's 1,500, she added another gold medal to her collection in Saturday's 500 with a time of 43.262. She finished ahead of Kasandra Bradette (43.301), of Saint-Felicien, Que, and Valerie Maltais (43.463), of La Baie, Que.
"The 500 is a distance that I love and where I know I can perform well at the Canadian level," said St-Gelais, who hails from Saint-Felicien, Que.
"In the final, I knew Kasandra would get off to a good start. I did not want to make a mistake towards the end of the race, as the ice wasn't as good. This gives me some big points, as it puts me at least among the top-three."
The 64 top short track speed skaters in Canada will face off in the 1,000 events Sunday.
The competition allows Canadian skaters to qualify for the upcoming senior world championships as well as for the two winter World Cup stages of the 2015-2016 season.