Rempel rips up Oval with silver

CAMERON MAXWELL, CALGARY SUN

, Last Updated: 10:08 AM ET

The reigning speed king faltered but Shannon Rempel gave the crowd something to shout about. The Winnipeg speed skater dialed it in for her second career World Cup medal, capturing silver in the women's 1,000 metres last night at the Olympic Oval in the Essent ISU World Cup. Meanwhile, Jeremy Wotherspoon didn't get close to a podium.

Rempel, a former junior world champion, did it in front of her parents, sister and grandma and about 1,500 fans who went nuts as she tore up the ice and gutted it out over the final 200 metres.

"That was really cool ... I've always dreamed of winning a medal in Calgary," said the 20-year-old, whose time of one minute 15.95 seconds marked a new personal best.

"I thought I could go under 1:15 and I just barely did it, so I was happy with that but I really laboured at the end."

Italy's Chiara Simionato grabbed gold, while Anzhelika Kotyuga of Belarus picked up bronze.

Rempel's thrilling skate helped fans forget the disappointing result for Red Deer's Wotherspoon, who has been a virtual lock to podium in the 500.

But that wasn't the case last night as the reigning 500 world champion had an off day, posting a 10th-place finish, marking the first time since last February he's been out of the medals in the 500.

"I'm not injured, I just didn't have the feel I normally have and didn't have as much energy as usual and I had a bad start and when that happens in the 500, that's the race," said Wotherspoon, 28, who holds the record for most career World Cup victories with 54.

"There's nothing I can do about it. It doesn't mean that I'm now that calibre of skater."

After his 500, Wotherspoon posted another less-than-stellar result in the 1,000, finishing ninth.

Erben Wennemars won 500 gold followed by Russia's Dmitry Lobkov and another Dutchman, Gerard van Velde. Wennemars also claimed 1,000m gold, followed by American Casey Fitzrandolph and Jan Bos of the Netherlands.

In the women's 500, Rempel skated a 38.10, beating her personal best by 2/10 of a second and finished sixth.

China's Manli Wang, who is undefeated this season, won gold followed by Kotyuga and Japan's Tomomi Okazaki.


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