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Setting the stage for more Canadian gold

Thursday, February 18th, 2010 | 4:00 pm

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Canwest News Service
Christine Nesbitt of London, Ont., claimed Canada’s third gold medal of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games on Thursday, delivering a sensational 1:16.56 in the women’s 1,000 metres after a misstep off the start in the second-final pairing of the afternoon.

Ottawa’s Kristina Groves, the bronze medallist in the 3,000, placed fourth in 1:16.78.

Nesbitt entered the race favoured, having won all four of her World Cup races at the distance this season after claiming the world championship last year.

The silver medal was won by the Netherlands Annette Gerritsen in 1:16.58, the bronze by Laurine van Riessen of the Netherlands in 1:16.72.

The victory was the first for Canada’s long-track skating team, projected to at least equal its output of eight medals won in Turin four years ago. The win was doubly welcome as it came the day after Fort St. John’s Denny Morrison, considered an outside medal threat, had skated a disappointing 1,000 Wednesday.

Nesbitt and Groves are both serious medal contenders in Sunday’s 1,500, and part of Canada’s No. 1 ranked women’s team pursuit.

Two Winnipeggers rounded out the Canadian contingent in the race, Shannon Rempel skating a 1:18.16 (21st), Brittany Schussler a 1:18.21 (25th).

Twelve gold medals for long track speed skating will be won over the course of the 12 days of competition.

The full schedule for long track speed skating is (all times are in Pacific Standard Time Zone):

  • Sat Feb 13, 2010 – 12pm – 2:20pm Speed Skating – Men’s – 5,000 m (Medal)
  • Sun Feb 14, 2010 – 1pm – 2:50pm Speed Skating – Women’s – 3,000 m (Medal)
  • Mon Feb 15, 2010 – 3:30pm – 5:28pm Speed Skating – Men’s – 500 m (1 of 2)
  • Tue Feb 16, 2010 – 5:28pm – 6:50pm – Speed Skating – Men’s – 500 m (2 of 2) (Medal)
  • Tue Feb 16, 2010 – 1pm – 2:52pm Speed Skating – Women’s – 500 m (1 of 2)
  • Tue Feb 16, 2010 – 2:52pm – 4:05pm – Speed Skating – Women’s – 500 m (2 of 2) (Medal)
  • Wed Feb 17, 2010 – 4pm – 5:30pm Speed Skating – Men’s – 1,000 m (Medal)
  • Thu Feb 18, 2010 – 1pm – 2:25pm Speed Skating – Women’s – 1,000 (Medal)
  • Sat Feb 20, 2010 – 4:15pm – 6pm Speed Skating – Men’s – 1,500 m (Medal)
  • Sun Feb 21, 2010 – 3pm – 4:35pm Speed Skating – Women’s – 1,500 m (Medal)
  • Tue Feb 23, 2010 – 11am – 1:45pm Speed Skating – Men’s – 10,000 m (Medal)
  • Wed Feb 24, 2010 – 1pm – 2:35pm Speed Skating – Women’s – 5,000 m (Medal)
  • Fri Feb 26, 2010

  • 12:30pm – 1:20pm Speed Skating – Men’s – Team Pursuit (QF)
  • 1:20pm – 2:07pm Speed Skating – Women’s – Team Pursuit (QF)
  • 2:07pm – 2:20pm Speed Skating – Men’s – Team Pursuit (SF)
  • Sat Feb 27, 2010

  • 12:30pm – 12:51pm Speed Skating – Women’s – Team Pursuit (SF)
  • 12:51pm – 1:13pm Speed Skating – Men’s – Team Pursuit Finals
  • 1:13pm – 2:25pm Speed Skating – Women’s – Team Pursuit Finals
  • The venue for long track speed skating is the new 8,000-seat Richmond Olympic Oval, on the banks of the Fraser River estuary and 14 km from the centre of Vancouver.

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