January 21, 2013
Drolet, Gilday take Canadian short track titles
By QMI Agency

Marie-Eve Drolet won the women's overall championship Sunday at the Canadian short track championships in Montreal. (Joel Lemay/QMI Agency)

Marie-Eve Drolet and Michael Gilday were crowned overall champions Sunday at the Canadian short track championships in Montreal.

Drolet, from Laterriere, Que., won the women's title after finishing first in the 3,000-metres and second in the 1,000m. Marianne St. Gelais, of St. Felicien, Que., was second.

"My first objective was rank myself to qualify for the world championships," Drolet said. "At the same time, it (Canadian championship) was an important rehearsal for the Olympic selections coming real soon this August."

Gilday, from Yellowknife, beat defending Canadian champ Charles Hamelin for the championship after finishing fourth in the 3,000m and 1,000m Sunday. Hamelin won the 1,000m Sunday but was eighth in the 3,000 to finish 16 points behind Gilday.

"Consistency pays in an overall competition when it's cumulative points, and I was really consistent," Gilday said. "That was the biggest thing. I'm a little disappointed with three times in fourth place. I was in all the finals, which is awesome and where I wanted to be, but I also want to be pushing for the wins a little harder. Charles (Hamelin), obviously he's got eight national titles, or something like that, I'll gladly take one."

DERRAUGH TOP CANUCK


Tyler Derraugh of Winnipeg had the best Canadian finish of the day Sunday at the World Cup long-track speed skating stop in Calgary.

Derraugh, who was fourth in the 1,000-metres Saturday in a personal-best time, finished seventh in the 1,000m Sunday. Gilmore Junio of Calgary finished eighth in the 500m.

"This is some of my best skating," Derraugh said. "I'm really building into the world sprints next weekend. Saturday was definitely a breakthrough. It was a huge improvement. I was fourth earlier this year so I knew I could be up there. To do it on the fast ice in Calgary is something that is a big deal for me."

Hein Otterspeer of the Netherlands won the 1,000-metre race in 1:07.76

Christine Nesbitt, the silver medallist in the 1,000m on Saturday, did not compete Sunday. She opted to sit out to prepare for the World Sprint Championship next weekend in Salt Lake City.

GOUGH GETS SIXTH

Alex Gough was the top Canadian luger Sunday at the World Cup in Winterberg, Germany, finishing sixth after making a mistake on her second run.

Gough was third after the first run but the bobble left her with a combined time of one minute, 53.210 seconds. Natalie Geisenberger of Germany took the gold medal in 1:52.916.

"We are in the mix, but we just cannot afford to make mistakes," Canadian coach Wolfgang Staudinger said. "I think we had a pretty solid day by all of our girls. Kim McRae particularly had a good day and demonstrated a lot of potential."

McRae finished ninth while Arianne Jones was 11th and Dayna Clay 13th.

In the men's doubles race, Tristan Walker and Justin Snith finished ninth.

JANYK STAYS POSITIVE

Mike Janyk of Whistler, B.C., picked up his first World Cup points of the season with a 26th-place finish in the men's slalom Sunday in Wengen, Switzerland.

Janyk had failed to finish the last five slalom events -- he failed to qualify for a second run in the first two then posted first-run DNFs in the next three -- so the result was a breakthrough of sorts.

"Hopefully this can spark something," said Janyk, won won the bronze medal at the 2009 world championship. "I'm going to build off it, for sure -- I haven't had a second run so far. Obviously I've been going through some tough times - it's the first time in my career. I'm still not happy with today but I'm happy being a part of (the second run)."

Germany's Felix Neureuther got the win Sunday with a two-run combined time of 1:50.53.

QUEBEC JOURNALIST DEAD

Legendary Quebec sports journalist Richard Garneau, who covered more Olympic Games than anyone else in the world, died Sunday from complications following heart surgery. He was 82.

Aside from covering 23 Olympics between 1960 and 2010, Garneau was one of the voices of the French-language version of Hockey Night in Canada (La Soire du Hockey) for 23 years. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1999 and named to the Order of Canada in 2006.

Former Montreal Canadiens defensive star Serge Savard said on Sunday that Garneau was a "pioneer for future generations. His way of announcing games was impeccable, a skill we don't see anymore."

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