SPORTS

Four winners during first sprint races at Canadian championships

01/04/2015 11:00 EST | Updated 03/06/2015 05:59 EST
CALGARY - Heather McLean, Gilmore Junio, Vincent de Haitre and Kali Christ were all winner of the first sprint races held at the Canadian single distance long track speed skating championships on Sunday.

McLean and Christ were the winners in the women's event, with McLean taking the women's 500-metre race and Christ winning the 1,000m event.

Winnipeg's McLean had a personal best of 38.41 seconds while Edmonton's Jessica Gregg took silver and Marsha Hudey of White City, Sask. won bronze.

"I'm really happy," said McLean. "I was able to improve on my opening (100 metres), which was my goal, because I knew if I opened faster, I'd keep getting faster."

Christ finished the 1,000m in one minute 16.09 seconds with Calgary's Kate Hanly and Toronto's Alexandra Ianculescu finishing in second and third.

In the men's events, Junio won the men's 500m race while de Haitre was the winner of the 1,000m.

Calgary's Junio narrowly beat Laurent Dubreuil of Levis, Que. with a time of 34.78 seconds compared to Dubreuil's 34.79 seconds. Alex Boisvert-Lacroix of Sherbrooke, Que., took the bronze in 34.82.

"It's one of my best races this year," said Junio. "I executed my plan properly and hopefully (Monday), I'll be a bit faster."

De Haitre won the 1,000m in 1:08.39, edging Dubreuil's time of 1:08.40. Winnipeg's Tyler Derraugh won bronze in a time of 1:08.52.

Denny Morrison of Fort St. John, B.C. qualified for the world all round championships in March with a seventh place finish in the 500m. It is the first time in six years that Morrison, a four-time Olympic medallist, has qualified for the championships.

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