Canadians have an edge on the velocity skating world championships

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With home-ice benefit and several other medal contenders on its roster, Canada appears to be like poised for a powerful displaying on the World Velocity Skating Single Distances Championships beginning Thursday in Calgary.

Because the identify implies, this occasion determines the lads’s and girls’s world champions (and silver and bronze medallists) in every separate distance in lengthy monitor velocity skating. The allround world championships, the place skaters compete for a unified title throughout a number of distances, happen subsequent month in Germany.

This system for the single-distances world championships is almost an identical to the Olympics’, the place there are six particular person occasions of various lengths and a group pursuit for each women and men. The worlds add a group dash occasion for every gender.

Final yr within the Netherlands, Canada positioned second within the standings with three gold (all in group occasions) and 7 complete medals. The host nation dominated with 17 medals, together with seven gold, displaying that it stays the world’s strongest velocity skating nation.

It’s going to be robust to catch the Dutch this week. However Canada might be in line for one more huge worlds with 19 skaters (together with 4 medallists from the newest Winter Olympics) set to compete on Calgary’s Olympic Oval — the group’s main coaching base and the religious residence of Canadian lengthy monitor velocity skating.

On this season’s World Cup tour, which wrapped up earlier this month in Quebec Metropolis, Canada averaged near 4 medals and one gold at every of the six stops — a superb baseline for what to anticipate in Calgary. 

Canada’s high medal contenders are:

Ivanie Blondin: The 2-time girls’s mass begin world champion took silver in her signature occasion finally yr’s worlds and the 2022 Olympics. Blondin excels in group occasions too: she’s a reigning Olympic and world champion within the girls’s group pursuit together with Valérie Maltais and Isabelle Weidemann, and she or he additionally captured the ladies’s group dash world title final yr with Brooklyn McDougall and Carolina Hiller. That gave Blondin a Canadian-high three medals on the worlds within the Netherlands, and 4 world titles for her profession.

Valérie Maltais: The least-prominent member of Canada’s Olympic and world-champion girls’s pursuit group parlayed her consistency into her first particular person World Cup championship this season within the mass begin. Although she did not win any of the six races, Maltais reached the rostrum in three of them to beat out Blondin, the runner-up regardless of two victories. Maltais additionally completed third within the girls’s lengthy distances standings, which mix 3,000m and 5,000m outcomes, and helped Canada place second within the girls’s group pursuit after a run of 4 straight World Cup titles.

Isabelle Weidemann: The 6-foot-2 Ottawa native was Canada’s most embellished velocity skater on the 2022 Olympics in Beijing, profitable gold within the girls’s group pursuit, silver within the 5,000m and bronze within the 3,000. After lacking the rostrum in her solo occasions finally yr’s world championships after which beginning off sluggish this season, Weidemann skipped the 2 European stops in the course of the World Cup circuit to organize for the ultimate stretch culminating with the worlds. She returned final month in Salt Lake Metropolis to assist Canada win gold within the group pursuit, then positioned fourth within the 3,000m on the tour finale in Quebec Metropolis.

Laurent Dubreuil: The 2022 Olympic silver medallist within the 1,000m was the one Canadian man to achieve a number of podiums finally yr’s world championships, taking silver within the 500m and serving to Canada to gold within the group dash. Dubreuil positioned second within the 500m World Cup standings this season and gained the world title in velocity skating’s shortest distance in 2021.

Ted-Jan Bloemen: The 2018 Olympic champion within the males’s 10,000m and silver medallist within the 5,000 retains on rolling. Bloemen, 37, took bronze within the 10K finally yr’s worlds within the Netherlands — the nation he was born and raised in and competed for till switching to Canada a decade in the past. Bloemen completed second within the World Cup males’s lengthy distances standings (5,000m and 10,000m) after capping his season with a victory within the finale in Quebec.


You may see each race on the world championships in Calgary reside on CBC Gem, and the CBC Sports activities app beginning Thursday at 2:30 p.m. ET via the top of the meet on Sunday. Play-by-play and color commentary might be equipped by CBC Sports activities’ Signa Butler and Anastasia Bucsis, a former Olympic velocity skater. This is the complete schedule of occasions.

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