TOMASZÓW MAZOWIECKI, Poland — After being held off the podium on Friday, Canadian speedskaters bounced back to pick up two silver medals in World Cup long-track action on Saturday.
Laurent Dubreuil, of Levis, Que., finished second in the men’s 500 metres with a time of 34.77 seconds.
Olympic champion Gao Tingyu of China won gold in 34.70, while Wataru Morishige of Japan captured bronze in 34.82. Morishige also won bronze in the 500 at the 2022 Beijing Olympics.
"I'm very satisfied, and it's not for nothing that I celebrated at the end of the race. I didn't feel very good up until now," said Dubreuil. "With a second medal this autumn and a good race like today, I'm closing in on third place overall. I'm satisfied with this performance and I'm already looking forward to tomorrow."
The Canadian women’s team of Valérie Maltais, of La Baie, Que., Béatrice Lamarche, of Quebec City, and Ivanie Blondin, of Calgary, earned silver in the team pursuit in a time 3:03.24.
The Japanese trio of Momoka Horikawa, Miho Takagi and Ayano Sato finished nearly three seconds ahead to claim gold. Poland’s Natalia Jabrzyk, Karolina Bosiek and Magdalena Czyszczon won the bronze.
It was the Canada's first team pursuit medal without Olympic champion Isabelle Weidemann since the 2018-19 season.
Speed Skating Canada said the Ottawa native returned home following the two Asian World Cups to focus on her preparations for the second half of the season.
Lamarche, subbing for Weidemann, was pleased with the result.
"We're all proud, it gives me confidence for the rest and I'm really happy, it was a great experience. I'm glad I did it with the girls, they supported me all the way. It was very positive, and I can't wait for the next one," she said.
The World Cup continues Sunday with the men's 5,000, a second men's 500, women's 1,000 and women's mass start race.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 9, 2003.
The Canadian Press
Note to readers: This is a corrected story. An earlier version listed Isabelle Weidemann instead of Valérie Maltais on Canada's team pursuit squad.