For the first time in history, Speed Skating Canada (SSC) is considering presenting the long and short track nationals in the same place.
The news has not yet been confirmed, but SSC is seriously evaluating the possibility of holding the two Canadian championships at the new Quebec Ice Ring from October 13 to 16 according to the information we have obtained.
Last weekend, the national organization held its Annual General Meeting in the Old Capital. Since Sunday, the two national teams have met in Quebec for a training camp. There is a desire for rapprochement between the two disciplines.
For a long time, the long track nationals have been held at the Olympic Oval in Calgary. As for the short track nationals, they take place at the Maurice Richard Arena, which is home to the national team. Before the construction of the Quebec Oval, no site in the country could accommodate both disciplines.
Last year, the Canadian short track team held a camp in Quebec during the holiday season with the objective of cementing the group before the Olympic Games. Had it not been for the COVID-19 cases that had broken out, the experience had been well-received by the athletes.
Seen with a good eye
Made aware of our information, Laurent Dubreuil would welcome this possibility. If everything comes to fruition, the 1000m silver medalist at the Beijing Olympics would be very happy.
“This is a very good plan, he said without being in the secret of the gods about the intentions of his federation. There is nothing that would make our sport shine more than that. The stars of the two disciplines would meet together. As we see with the training camp which brings together all the athletes, there is an effort to bring the two disciplines closer together. »
World Cup in Montreal
Nationals will serve as a selection for the World Cup circuit. Short track skaters will be in action in Montreal from October 28 to 30 for the launch of the World Cup season.
As for long track skaters, the start of the international season will be given from November 11 to 13 in Slavanger, Norway.
After a second European stop in Heerenveen in the Netherlands from November 18 to 20, Quebec will host the Four Continents Championship from December 2 to 4. It will be the first international competition in the new ring, which opened in August 2021. The Olympic Oval in Calgary will host the World Cup on the following two weekends.
SSC also took advantage of its General Assembly to honor the most deserving athletes of the past season and to pay tribute to the Olympians.
In long track, Olympic medalists Isabelle Widemann and Dubreuil are the skaters par excellence, while Steven Dubois and Kim Boutin deserve the same honor in short track. Dubois won three medals in Beijing and Boutin won bronze in the 500m.
Coach of Widemann and Ivanie Blondin who won three individual medals in addition to gold in the team pursuit with Valérie Maltais, Remmett Eldering received the Coach of the Year award.
Olympian Gilmore Junio was honored for his community involvement.