Olympic anniversary passes without much fanfare from Canadian hero

CAM MAXWELL, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:18 AM ET

CALGARY -- When it comes to her five-medal performance last year at the Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy, Cindy Klassen isn't about to get sentimental.

The 27-year-old didn't celebrate or acknowledge the one-year anniversary of one of the most dominant individual performances in Canadian sport history.

"Actually I didn't even realize it had been one year," Klassen said Friday, after finishing fifth in the women's 1,000m at the final World Cup event in Calgary.

She returned to the podium after finishing second in the 1,500m yesterday.

"I heard people talking about it but I didn't even think about it."

It's not surprising considering Klassen keeps her six Olympic medals out of sight and out of mind in a closet.

Not surprisingly, too -- given it's the year after the Olympics and she took half a season off -- Klassen's skating level isn't close to what it was a year ago when she was winning everything in sight.

Consider she set a new world record of 1:13.11 in the 1,000m here shortly after Turin. She finished the same distance in 1:14.78 Friday.

"Last year, every race I went into I felt very fit and I don't feel like that right now," she said. "But that was expected, so I can't feel bad about it."

It's all part of the plan for the Vancouver Games in 2010, a once-in-a-lifetime chance to put on a spectacular show in front of the home fans.

"The next three years will be a big buildup towards 2010," said Klassen, who holds three world records (1,000, 1,500 and 3,000).

"The time off was pretty important and it'll help me over the next three years, for sure. Every time I go out and race, I'm going to be a bit hungrier."


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