Blondin falls short in bid for World Cup repeat
By Fred Sherwin
speedskater Ivanie Blondin ended her season on a disappointing
note on Sunday, falling short in her bid to successfully
defend her World Cup mass start title in Heerenveen, Netherlands.
recently crowned World Champion in the mass start went
into the final World Cup event of the season trailing
Dutch skater Irene Schouten by 16 points.
task was clear, all Blondin had to do to win her second
World Cup title in a row was finish ahead of her Dutch
rival. A task that would prove much easier said than done.
race started out very much in Blondin's favour when Schouten
was knocked down and taken into the boards by Italian
skater Francesca Lollobrigida.
took Schouten the better part of 20 laps to catch up to
the leaders, and with two laps to go she was breathing
down Blondin's neck.
Blondin's momentum took her wide coming off the final
turn, Schouten seized the moment and passed her on the
inside in a move that was reminiscent of Blondin's wiinning
pass coming off the final turn at the World Championships.
ended up earning her third silver medal to along with
two bronze medals in five World Cup events. Her only win
in the mass start this season came at the aforementioned
World Single Distance Championships.
wasn't the only local skater competing at the World Cup
finale. Cumberland native and fellow Gloucester Concordes
member Vincent de Haitre bounced back from a ninth place
performance in the 1000-metre final to win a silver medal
in the Team Pursuit final with fellow Team Canada members
Gilmore Junio and Alexandre St-Jean.
2:30 p.m., March 13)
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