With 59 days until the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games, Canada’s best athletes are exactly where they need to be: standing on World Cup podiums. Canadian Olympic hopefuls collected 10 medals this past weekend, amplifying the message that the Maple Leaf is to be feared on the world stage as the Opening Ceremony draws nearer.
Thompson dominates Ski Cross course at home
Marielle Thompson, of Whistler, B.C., dominated all her heats and was untouchable in the final to capture gold on home soil in Nakiska, AB. and earn her spot on the Olympic team for the Sochi 2014 Games. Ski cross teammate Brady Leman, of Calgary, AB also found the podium for a bronze.
Humphries keeping comfortable at the top
Reigning world and Olympic champion bobsledder Kaillie Humphries (Calgary, AB) piloted to her 15th straight World Cup podium in Park City, Utah with brakeman (and defending Olympic champ) Heather Moyse (Summerside, PEI) on Friday night.
Sarah Reid rallies to make skeleton history
Also in Park City, Calgary, AB native Sarah Reid made history in sliding to a bronze, marking the 100th World Cup podium performance for Canadian women’s skeleton. The run puts Canada as a leading nation in this discipline as the first country to achieve this medal tally.
Maltais steps up for silver
In Montafon, Austria Dominique Maltais (Petite-Rivière-Saint-François, Que.) battled through qualifying in ninth spot to deliver a silver medal in World Cup snowboard cross action. “A second place tells me that things are going well,” Maltais said in a release. “Obviously the objective is to be perfect and there are lots of great upcoming races to win. That’s my goal.” Teammate Kevin Hill (Vernon, BC) joined her on the podium for his first World Cup medal with a bronze.
Lugers get it done at home track
Alex Gough, (Calgary, AB) captured her first career World Cup silver-medal winning performance in the women’s singles in Whistler, BC. She also carried the Canadian relay team onto the second spot of the World Cup podium in the team relay. “It is my second best result ever, and best in Whistler, so that’s awesome,” said Gough.” Gough was joined by Sam Edney (Calgary, AB), along with Tristan Walker (Cochrane, AB) and Justin Snith (Calgary, AB) to clock a combined time of 2:04.202 and another podium for Canada.
Skaters secure silver hardware from Grand Prix Final.
At the prestigious Grand Prix Final in Fukuoka, Japan, World champion Patrick Chan of Toronto, ON won the silver medal in men’s singles at the ISU Grand Prix Final figure skating competition. Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan took the gold. “I faced a good challenge today trying to come back from a disappointing short program,” said Chan. “Even though I didn’t win the competition I felt like I accomplished a lot.” Ice dance superstars Tessa Virtue (London, ON) and Scott Moir (Ilderton, ON) also collected silver, after being edged out by Meryl Davis and Charlie White of the United States. “We did our technical elements really well at this event,” said Moir. “We’ll need to come out with more speed and more emotion heading into the (Olympic) Games.”