Pascal Dion’s early season success on the ice extended beyond the 1,000-meter distance on Saturday.
The Montreal speed skater finished second in the men’s 1,500, his first World Cup medal in that event, behind China’s Ren Ziwei in the short track in Debrecen, Hungary.
Dion maintained his second place with less than five laps to go as his teammate Charles Hamelin slipped to sixth place from third in his first A final of this World Cup season.
Dion crossed the finish line in 2: 13.048 minutes, with Ziwei in 2: 12.910 and Park Jang Hyuk of South Korea third in 2: 13.125.
WATCH | Dion is behind the only Chinese opponent in Hungary:
“A career first medal in the 1500 is exceptional, especially a silver medal,” Dion, 27, told Speed Skating Canada. “Some of my best results over the last few years have been in the 1500.
“I had quite a few fourth places so it felt good to finally win a medal over that distance. I knew I had the legs to do it, but I just needed a run to be there. . “
On October 31, Dion won bronze in the men’s 1000m, his second medal in the distance in as many races this World Cup season, and relay gold with Steven Dubois, Jordan Pierre-Gilles and Hamelin in Nagoya, in Japan.
On the women’s side, compatriots Courtney Sarault of Moncton, New Brunswick, and Kim Boutin of Sherbrooke, Que., Won bronze medals in the 1500 and 500, respectively.
Sarault, 21, sat in the back of the field for much of the race and passed two skaters on the final lap to win her second distance medal of the season after winning silver in Beijing in October. Her time of 2: 23.118 placed her behind Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands (2: 23.009) and Yubin Lee of South Korea (2: 23.101).
WATCH | Sarault takes bronze in Debrecen:
“I feel like I lacked a bit of confidence going into this race. I was thinking about the strategy I used in the 1500 at the last World Cup, which probably wasn’t the best idea, ”said Sarault. “I knew the A final was going to be a very difficult and fast race and I would have liked to move forward a bit earlier as I think that would have helped me to finish in a better position.
“Unfortunately, I was stuck in a bad place near the back. It’s a shame, but I’m still proud of my result.”
Boutin, 26, returned to the international podium for the first time since winning five consecutive 500-meter World Cup gold medals in the 2019-2020 campaign.
She was in the lead for the first three laps of the race, thanks to a quick start, but was passed by Schulting (42.566 seconds) and Italian Arianna Fontana (42.801) after her left blade slipped under her in the ‘one of the straight lines. . Boutin crossed the finish line in 42.860.
WATCH | Boutin wins bronze in the 500 final:
“I had a lot of fun running today. It was nice to see how fast I could go again,” said Boutin. “I felt good on the ice and got off to a good start.
“I’m happy with the way I approached my race. Over the past few years I was a lot more nervous and had less fun running in these kinds of situations.”
Florence Brunelle, seventeen, of Trois-Rivières, Que., Was fourth, surpassing her previous career record of 11th at each of the first two World Cups of the season.
Canada’s relay teams ended the first day of competition on a positive note, advancing to their respective A finals with quality performances.
Competition ends on Sunday with the 1000m finals and three relays – men, women and mixed. The races will be broadcast live on CBC Sports starting at 8 a.m. ET.