Canadian juniors end medal drought

RYAN PYETTE, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 7:13 PM ET

QUEBEC CITY - Ian Beharry works as a Zamboni driver at the Ice Park in Cambridge, Ont.

But he has never grabbed his figure skates and carved up the ice he has just finished resurfacing.

"We get enough practice at training (alongside pairs partner Katherine Bobak, with coaches Kris and Kristy Wirtz at RIM Park in Waterloo)," the 20-year-old said with a wry grin.

Bobak and Beharry, both of Guelph, Ont., have been together only 10 months but their quick chemistry has resulted in Canada's first pairs medal -- a silver Friday afternoon at Quebec City -- in eight years at the junior portion of the International Skating Union's Grand Prix final.

Jessica Dube and Bryce Davison won the junior final at Malmo, Sweden in 2003.

The 17-year-old Bobak, a high school student, grew up a big fan of the former three-time Canadian champions.

"The way they were able to tell a story with their skating, it was inspiring," Bobak said.

Beharry said it was "pretty cool" to be the ones to end the drought. "And to do it in Canada at home, you can't really ask for anything else."

How about the fact they're nearly neighbours in Guelph? Skaters, at times, search their entire country -- and even go outside those borders -- to find the right partner.

"We commute to practice together and that's when we found out we literally live four streets from each other (in Guelph)," Beharry said. "I think our skating styles are really similar. That's what everybody said off the bat in our tryout."

They're preparing to make the jump to the senior ranks next year. It can mean a lot of anxious moments, but that's where Beharry's patient demeanour comes into play.

"I would say he has a cool, calm personality and ... I can be a little high maintenance," Bobak said, noting they always seem to balance each other out.

ryan.pyette@sunmedia.ca


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