Speed Skating

Blondin claims silver medal behind Schouten in tightly contested mass start

Ottawa speed skater Ivanie Blondin claimed a World Cup silver medal in the women's mass start in a tight finish with reigning Olympic champion Irene Schouten of the Netherlands.

Reigning Olympic champion wins for 2nd straight week; Dubreuil 2nd in men's 500m

For a second consecutive week, Ottawa's Ivanie Blondin, pictured, finished second to reigning Olympic champion Irene Schouten in speed skating World Cup action on Saturday in Heerenveen, Netherlands. (Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

Ottawa speed skater Ivanie Blondin claimed a World Cup silver medal in the women's mass start in a tight finish with reigning Olympic champion Irene Schouten of the Netherlands.

Laurent Dubreuil of Lévis, Que., also earned a silver medal in the men's 500 metres Saturday in Heerenveen.

Schouten and Blondin finished one-two for a second straight week with Schouten edging Blondin by a toe.

"It was a spicy one today," Blondin told Speed Skating Canada. "The girls were feisty out there, which makes it a fun race for me because I get pumped when that happens. I had a good race, but near the finish I stumbled a little bit.

"I think if that [did] not happen I could have beat Schouten at the line because I had much more speed, but those things happen."

Italy's Francesca Lollobrigida was third in the 16-lap race featuring the short-track elements of all competitors taking off simultaneously from the start line and skaters jostling for position throughout the race.

WATCH | Blondin returns to podium in Heerenveen:

World Cup silver medal for Canada's Ivanie Blondin

10 months ago
2:05
Ottawa's Ivanie Blondin captured a World Cup speed skating silver medal Saturday in the women's mass start. 2:05

The COVID-19 global pandemic has shrunk the World Cup speed skating season to two events in Heerenveen ahead of the Feb. 11-14 world championship at the same oval.

Dubreuil placed second in 34.520 seconds behind winner Pavel Kulizhnikov of Russia in 34.475.

"I'm really happy with my day today," he said. "It was a great race, but again it wasn't a perfect race. I made a few small mistakes, but I cannot be mad about finishing second with a 34.52. It's super good and it's encouraging for my next races."

Dutch men sweep 1,500 metres

Kulizhnikov's teammate Artem Arefyev and Dai Dai Ntab of the Netherlands tied for third with identical times of 34.588.

WATCH | Dubreuil collects silver in men's 500 metres:

World Cup silver medal for Canada's Laurent Dubreuil

10 months ago
1:54
Quebec City's Laurent Dubreuil won a silver medal Saturday in the 500 metre World Cup event in Heerenveen, Netherlands crossing the line with a time of 34.520. 1:54

Dutchwoman Femke Kok took the women's 500. Winnipeg's Heather McLean placed fifth just under three-tenths of a second off the podium.

Dutch men swept the 1,500 with Thomas Krol, Kjeld Nuis and Patrick Roest finishing first to third respectively. Connor Howe of Canmore, Alta., placed seventh.

Dutchman Jorrit Bergsma won the men's mass start ahead of runner-up Bart Swings of Germany and bronze medallist Livio Wenger of Switzerland. Toronto's Jordan Belchos was eighth.

American Brittany Bowe won the women's 1,500 with Antoinette de Jong and Ireen Wust of the Netherlands second and third, respectively.

Other Canadian results:

  • Kaylin Irvine (Calgary): 16th in 500 metres
  • Béatrice Lamarche (Quebec City): 22nd in 500
  • Valérie Maltais (Saguenay, Que.): 14th in 1500m, DQ in mass start
  • Abigail McCluskey (Penticton, B.C.): 6th in 1500 (Division B)
  • Heather McLean (Winnipeg): 5th in 500
  • Isabelle Weidemann (Ottawa): 1st in 1500 (Division B)
  • Jordan Belchos (Toronto): 8th in mass start
  • Alex Boisvert-Lacroix (Sherbrooke, Que.): 19th in 500
  • Connor Howe (Canmore, Alta.): 7th in 1500
  • Gilmore Junio (Calgary): 10th in 500

With files from CBC Sports

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