Volume 12 Week 5

Monday, Oct. 23


 

Team of the Month

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Orléans Ward
Bob Monette

Beacon Hill,
Cyrville Ward
Tim Tierney



Speed skating
East end pair strike gold at World Cup event in Kazahkstan
By Fred Sherwin
OrleansOnline,ca

East end natives Vincent de Haitre and Ivanie Blondin won a pair of golf medals at theaWorld Cup event in Kazahkstan on the weekend. GETTY IMAGES

East end natives Ivanie Blondin and Vincent de Haître were on top of their game at a World Cup event in Kazahkstan on the weekend, combining for a pair of gold medals in their respective specialties.

Cumberland native de Haître won his first ever individual gold medal in international competition with a first place performance in the 1000-metres on Saturday.

De Haître, 22, had to beat reigning World Cup champion Pavel Kulizhnikov on his to the top of the podium, which made his victory that much more sweeter. His best result on the international stage before this weekend was a thrid place finish in the 1000-metres at the World Cup finals last year.

“It’s still sinking in,” de Haître said after his skate on Saturday. “I’m super happy about it. I was thinking about all the stuff I’ve been working on all week, and I tried to apply it as much as I could. During the last lap, I got a little bit nervous. There is still room for improvement, but I’m still incredibly happy about it.”

De Haître said that making a change to his approach also helped.

“Before, as soon as I would find out who I was with in my pair, I would get nervous because of who they were and I would worry about where they would be on the ice. This time, I told myself to really focus on what I needed to do in the race and that if I see him, I see him. And if I don’t, it’s a good race.”

Orléans native Ivanie Blondin had a good race in her specialty, the mass start, surviving a very physical final few laps to win her second gold medal of the season to go along with one silver.

“It was a fast-paced race, there was a lot of bumping going on but I felt comfortable out there. I felt ready, I felt happy and excited to be out on the ice, although I was a little bit nervous before the race because I knew Irene Schouten was going to be out there – this was her first mass start this season,” said Ivanie Blondin about the Dutch skater, one of her main rivals in recent seasons in the mass start event.

“During the last lap, the Dutch skaters tried the same strategy that the Japanese skaters used at last season’s World Championships, so I knew how to react. I was able to find my way between the two Dutch skaters and place myself in good position for the last stretch,” added Blondin. “Things were sketchy at the end, but I was able to defend my spot well, I was aggressive, I did what I had to do to win today’s race.”

Blondin began the weekend with a fourth place performance in the 3000-metres, while fellow east-ender Isabelle Weidemann came in eighth place in the same race.

The pair were then part of the Canadian team persuit team, along with Calgary’s Brianne Tutt, that crashed out of their race and didn’t finish.

(Posted 8:30 a.m., Dec. 7)

 

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