Canadians Boutin, Cournoyer, Hamelin earn short track silver
Korean speed skaters capture gold in women's, men's A finals at World Cup event
Canadian Olympic medallists Kim Boutin and Charle Cournoyer picked up silver medals on Saturday at a World Cup speed skating event in Dresden, Germany.
Boutin, who delayed the start of her season until December, finished second in the women's 1,500-metre A final with a time of two minutes, 23.140 seconds. Kim Ji Yoo of Korea posted a winning time of 2:23.076 while Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands rounded out the podium in 2:23.200.
WATCH | Boutin scores her second silver medal of the season:
"I noticed that all of the best girls were up at the front and we weren't skating very fast," Boutin said. "I used that as an opportunity to conserve my energy and put myself in a good position so that I could finish strong in the end."
The 24-year-old Boutin, who hails from Sherbrooke, Que., also finished second in her season debut on Dec. 8 in the 1,000 at Almaty, Kazakhstan before grabbing bronze in the 1,500 the next day.
WATCH | Kim Boutin grabs silver in World Cup season debut:
Last February, Boutin won three medals in her Olympic debut in Pyeongchang, South Korea, and was named Canada's flag-bearer for the closing ceremony.
In the men's 1,000 A final on Saturday, Cournoyer of Longueuil, Que., crossed the finish line second in 1:25.412, trailing Hwang Dae Heon (1:25.133) but ahead of his Korean teammate, Hong Kyung Hwan (1:25.416).
Cournoyer was a member of the Canadian men's 5,000 relay team that captured bronze in Pyeongchang.
WATCH | Cournoyer skates to silver:
Gagnon 3rd in women's 1,000 B final
Meanwhile, five-time Olympic medallist Charles Hamelin of Lévis, Que., was second in Saturday's 1,500 A final (2:15.155) while Steven Dubois was fourth (2:15.221). Montreal's Pascal Dion was fifth (2:27.028) in the 1,500 B final.
"It felt super good to have been on the podium today," said Hamelin, the reigning world champion who has three Winter Games gold medals. "We started the season a bit late with our new coach, but it's starting to pay off.
"We continue to work hard, and with these results and those from next weekend, our confidence will continue to grow. I will have to battle hard to defend my World Championship title, but I think that I will be ready."
WATCH | Hamelin earns Canada another silver medal:
Montreal's Alyson Charles was fourth in the women's 1,000 A final and Claudia Gagnon of Saguenay, Que., third on the B side.
Canada eyes men's, women's relay gold
The men's and ladies relay teams both qualified for Sunday's finals, while a fall with two laps remaining ended the mixed relay's chances at the podium.
Sunday will see Sam Girard, Dubois and Cédrik Blais race in the men's 500, while teammates Boutin, Charles and Kasandra Bradette join them on the women's side.
Dion, Hamelin and Cournoyer have secured their spots in the men's 1,000 quarter-finals, as has Courtney Sarault. Gagnon will need to pass through the repechage to join them.
Other Canadian results Saturday:
- Bradette (St. Félicien, Que.) — Sixth in the ladies 1,000m semifinal
- Sarault (Moncton) — Penalized in the semifinal of the women's 1,500
- Girard (Ferland-et-Boilleau, Que.) and Blais (Châteauguay, Que.) — Fourth in their respective quarter-finals of the men's 1,000
Live action from the short track World Cup event in Dresden resumes on Sunday at 6 a.m. ET on CBCSports.ca.
With files from The Canadian Press