Vincent De Haître confirmed his No. 1 ranking in the men's 1,000-metre on Day 3 of the long track World Cup trials on Saturday in Calgary.
The Cumberland, Ont., native won the race in 1:07:83, while Alexandre St-Jean (1:08:50) and Olympic medallist Denny Morrison (1:08:59) rounded out the top three.
De Haître, who had already prequalified in this event after winning silver at last season's World Single Distance Championships, felt he had something to prove.
"I came here preselected and I wanted to show why that was the case, and the only way to do that was to win."
Canada has a maximum of four spots available in the 1,000, with seven skaters having, thus far, met the qualification time: De Haître, St-Jean, Morrison, David LaRue (who set a new personal best), Alex Boisvert-Lacroix, Laurent Dubreuil and Richard Maclennan.
Junio edges Dubreuil
In the highly competitive men's 500, Gilmore Junio (34.60) finished ahead of Laurent Dubreuil by two-hundredths of a second.
Junio, who has spent the last few months training in Norway with retired Olympic medallist Jeremy Witherspoon, credits his performance to this change in environment.
"I may have become a bit too comfortable training at home " said the Calgary native. You have to earn it in sport and I think that's one of the reasons I was able to come back and skate as fast as I did.
"Training in Norway was a big change, but as an athlete and a person, I needed that to grow and come back stronger than ever."
A maximum of five spots have been awarded to Canada in the 500. After two days of competition the leaders are: Junio (68.94), Dubreuil (68.98), Boisvert-Lacroix (69.09), Dutton (69.32) and St-Jean (69.88).
Hudey repeats, McLean makes amends
Marsha Hudey (37.46) of White City, Sask., maintained her winning form on Saturday, once again taking the podium ahead of Heather McLean (37.49) and Kaylin Irvine (38.35).
While there are a total of four spots up for grabs, Hudey, McLean and Irvine were the only three to meet the qualification criteria.
McLean however made amends for her two consecutive second-place finishes in the 500 by taking top honours in the 1,000.
With a time of 1:14:98, McLean finished ahead of Irvine (1:15:34) and Brianne Tutt (who raced a personal best 1:16:29), while all three met the time requirements.
The Fall World Cup selections will conclude on Sunday, with the 1,500 and the second mass start race event for both men and women.
A total of 20 athletes will be selected for the Fall World Cups—with the final team announcement expected over the next few weeks.