Winnipeg’s Shannon Rempel inches closer to podium at speed skating World Cup

Shannon Rempel of Winnipeg posted her best result this season on Sunday placing fourth in the women’s 1,000-metre to conclude the fourth stop on the long track speed skating World Cup circuit.

Chiara Simionato of Italy completed a golden sweep this weekend in the 1,000 clocking in one minute and 17.14 seconds with Olympic champion Marianne Timmer of the Netherlands second in 1:17.65 and her compatriot Annette Gerritsen third in 1:17.78.

Rempel, who was paired with Gerritsen, followed in 1:18.06

Kim Weger of Regina was 19th, Krisy Myers of Lloydminster, Sask., 21st and Clara Hughes of Glen Sutton, Que., 22nd.

In the 1,000 World Cup standings after five of 10 races, Rempel now stands fourth with 233 points. She was fifth at the distance in her previous two World Cup races. Simionato takes the overall lead at 322, Anna Friesinger of Germany is second at 300 and Timmer third at 284.

Other Canadian results:

In the men’s 1,000, François-Olivier Roberge of St-Nicholas, Que., was ninth and Brock Miron of Calgary 13th while Vincent Labrie of St-Romuald, Que., won the B Group race.

‘’François-Olivier had another solid race but he probably needed to relax a bit more,’’ said Roberge’s coach Robert Tremblay. ‘’He certainly showed again that he is a threat for a medal. It was also a strong showing for Vincent. He moves into the main draw next week. It’s never easy to race in Group B. Those races are held at the end of the day and there isn’t much atmosphere anymore in the oval.’’

In the men’s 500, Mike Ireland of Winnipeg was 10th while in the B Group Labrie was fifth, Miron eighth and Roberge 10th

In the women’s 500, Rempel was 17th, Weger 19th, Myers 22nd and Hughes 25th.

The World Cup season continues next weekend at Nagano, Japan.