Boutin and Dubois bring home 1000m gold; Pascal Dion and Mixed Relay win silver
DORDRECHT, NETHERLANDS – Canadian short track skaters won four medals at the ISU World Cup Short Track in Dordrecht on Saturday, including gold from Kim Boutin and Steven Dubois, as well as silver from Pascal Dion and the 2000m mixed relay team.
Boutin kicked off Canada’s winning ways with a gold medal in the women’s 1000m, crossing the line in a time of 1:29.807. The Sherbrooke native worked her way into second place, before executing a strong inside pass in the entry of the final corner to overtake then leader Xandra Velzeboer of the Netherlands and secure the top spot. American Kristen Santos-Griswold (1:29.864) also passed Velzeboer (1:29.968) in the last turn to move into silver medal position.
It was Boutin’s first medal of the season in the 1000m, surpassing the fourth place finish she earned in Almaty last December. Her teammate Danaé Blais was fourth (1:30.668) on Saturday, which was her best result in the distance this season as well.
Dubois and Dion followed up with a double podium for Canada in the men’s 1000m, crossing the finish line in gold and silver medal position, respectively.
Dubois (1:24.532) took the lead with four laps remaining and held on until the very end to win his first career gold medal in the 1000m. His teammate Dion (1:24.659) finished one spot behind him, outmuscling Latvia’s Roberts Kruzbergs (1:24.682), who was attempting to squeeze past him on the inside at the finish line, to capture silver. It was the Montreal native’s third medal of the season in the distance, having previously captured gold in Montreal and bronze in Almaty.
Canada (2:38.898) finished off the day with a silver medal in the mixed relay, their best result of the season. The team of William Dandjinou, Jordan Pierre-Gilles, Courtney Sarault and Rikki Doak battled with the hometown Dutch (2:38.811) from start to finish but were unable to get back to the front of the pack after losing the lead in the 13th lap. Poland (2:39.858) joined Canada and the Netherlands on the podium.
While she medalled in the mixed relay, it was a heartbreaking day for Sarault in her individual distance, finishing just shy of the podium in fourth place of the women’s 1500m. The Moncton native looked poised to bring hold gold before a late inside pass from Belgium’s Hanne Desmet in the entry of the final corner caused her to lose speed and fall off the podium. Desmet was crowned the winner after crossing the finish line in 2:29.432, ahead of Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands (2:29.470) and Suk Hee Shim of Korea (2:29.482). Sarault was fourth (2:29.487), five one-thousandths of a second behind the bronze medalist.
The ISU World Cup Short Track season comes to an end tomorrow in Dordrecht, where medals will be awarded in the men’s and women’s 500m, 1000m (2) and relays. The inaugural Crystal Globe trophy – awarded to the top male and female skaters in the overall rankings – will also be presented on Sunday, with Canadians Sarault, Dion and Dubois in contention for a top-5 result.
Watch the races live on CBC Sports digital platforms, including CBCSports.ca and the CBC Gem app.
“I am very proud of my race, because I was going for the gold. I knew that Xandra [Velzeboer] would probably pull from the front for the whole race, so I wanted to find myself in a good position to practice a pass on her. I left some distance between us to give myself enough space to try a pass. I am very proud to have been aggressive and successful in my execution. Another tool in my toolkit!”Kim Boutin
“I’m very happy to have won this medal! I was disappointed with my results last weekend, since I felt in good shape. So I told myself that this final was my chance to go for the gold medal. Since I was last on the start line, I knew that I would need to be aggressive in the first laps to make my way up the pack. When I found myself in second place behind Pascal [Dion], I decided to let him work a bit out front and then make a pass for the best chance to win. It was a very difficult race that I managed extremely well, so I am happy to win my first gold medal in the 1000m this way!”Steven Dubois
“My strategy definitely changes a bit when I have a teammate to help me in the race. I was trying to control the race from the front and to keep the other skaters behind me while Steven [Dubois] made his way up the pack. If I was by myself, I would have conserved my energy a bit more, but in this case I knew that we would work together until the end.”Pascal Dion
- Courtney Sarault: 4th
- Claudia Gagnon: 8th
- Rikki Doak: 10th
- Kim Boutin: 1st
- Danaé Blais: 4th
- Renée Steenge: 12th
- William Dandjinou: 9th
- Maxime Laoun: 10th
- Jordan Pierre-Gilles: 32nd
- Steven Dubois: 1st
- Pascal Dion: 2nd
- Félix Roussel: 8th
- Mixed: 2nd