Canadian speed skaters capture men's team pursuit silver at World Cup in Calgary
Gélinas-Beaulieu, Howe, Mayeur claim Canada's first medal in the event this season
Canada captured men's team pursuit silver on the opening day of the ISU speed skating World Cup in Calgary on Friday.
Connor Howe of Canmore, Alta., Montreal's Antoine Gélinas-Beaulieu and Toronto's Hayden Mayeur finished second with a time of 3:36.485, just over half a second behind the United States (3:35.925) at the Olympic Oval.
The Norwegian team came away with bronze in 3:39.887.
The Canadian trio collected the first medal of the season in the event. Howe and long-distance specialists Jordan Belchos and Ted-Jan Bloemen were fifth at the Beijing Olympics last February.
"It gives us lots of encouragement," Howe said. "This year we're trying out new things a bit, a new team with middle-distance guys to get to speed easier. If you can't start fast enough, you can't make up the time.
"It seems to be working. If we think that's good we'll work on that towards the next Olympics and be better contenders."
WATCH | Canada wins men's team pursuit silver at World Cup in Calgary:
Ottawa native Ivanie Blondin finished fourth in the women's 3,000 metres with a time of 3:59.747, just over half a second off the podium.
Norway's Ragne Wiklund won gold in 3:56.937, while Marijke Groenewoud (3:58.893) and Antoinette Rijpma-de Jong (3:59.319) of the Netherlands rounded out the podium with silver and bronze, respectively.
Valerie Maltais of La Baie, Que., finished sixth in 4:01.870.
Blondin will compete in the women's 1,500 before joining Weidemann and Maltais in the women's team pursuit Saturday.
"One of my goals this year is to get on the podium for the 1,500," Blondin said. "I know my speed right now is really high and so I think I need this weekend to utilize that and to try to execute.
"I'm hoping I can pull something out that's going to be fast enough for the podium."
On Sunday, Blondin races her signature mass start comprised of both a semifinal and final, as well as the 1,000 metres.
Before helping Canada win team pursuit silver on Friday, Howe placed sixth in the men's 1,500 with a time of 1:43.682. Winnipeg's Tyson Langelaar was 13th in 1:44.791.
Wesley Dijs (1:42.930) and Kjeld Nuis (1:43.027) of the Netherlands won gold and bronze, respectively, while China's Zhongyan Ning took silver (1:42.957).
In the women's 500 metres, 25-year-old Carolina Hiller of Prince George, B.C., finished with a personal best time of 38.247 to place 16th.
Live coverage of the event continues through Sunday on CBCSports.ca, the CBC Sports app and CBC Gem.
With files from The Canadian Press