Places to take for the last two stages

Seats to take for the last two stages


Skaters who did well in the World Cup in the fall leave with a head start, but Sébastien Cros assures that very real stakes will spice up the short track speed skating trials that will take place starting Friday at Place Bell.

The top six skaters for both men and women will qualify for the final two World Cup stops in Germany and the Netherlands.

Medal winners at the first four World Cups will be able to use one podium per event (500m, 1000m and 1500m) to establish the ranking at the end of the selections.

“Some have a thicker advance mattress, illustrated the head coach of the Canadian team about the big names of the team, but there will be battles. Athletes will need to perform well, primarily for positions five and six. »

Brunelle in good shape

After an autumn nursing an injury, Florence Brunelle will make her comeback. 

“Florence took advantage of the fall to redo a good base of physical and technical training, explained Cros. It has been back to a very good level for a few weeks and it will have its cards to play at the end of the week. »

Florence Brunelle

“In her last year of eligibility, her priority objective is the world junior championship, added Cros, but she can definitely help us in the World Cup relay and do well in some individual events. She is back to a very good level. »

Boutin at its best

After a more difficult start to the season where fatigue related to a different training program did not allow her to obtain the expected results at the World Cups in Montreal and Salt Lake City, Kim Boutin has regained her cruising speed. .

“Since returning from the holiday break, Kim has been doing really, really good workouts. Last week, she clocked her best time in the 400m. Her best 400m training time was four years ago when she won all 500m. It's fun to see that even as you age, performance continues to improve.

Charles' absence casts doubt on his retirement

Everything suggests that Alyson Charles will hang on his skates at the peak of retirement.

Absent from the first selections in October to concentrate on his studies at McGill, Charles will shine also by his absence at the end of the week in Laval during the second selections.

“Because Alyson is still young [24 years old], has talent and was still able to progress, I am surprised by his decision, mentioned the head coach of the Canadian team, Sébastien Cros. Alyson is 100% dedicated to the task and she is picky, which represents a big demand for energy. In these circumstances, an athlete may want to drop out a bit.

Charles has not yet made his decision official with the Canadian team, but should do so shortly. 

“We expect a decision from him soon, but we are giving him time,” said Cros. We respect his choice. Our program is flexible and we will be open to her return if she changes her mind. There are sometimes reversals, but I have no clue at the moment that suggests this. »

The relay is doing well

Charles' departure could have hurt the 3000m relay since she played an important role, but Canada did well with one gold and three silver in four races.

“We shot the relay well and the six girls contributed,” said Cros. Claudia Gagnon wasn't there last year, but she had World Cup experience just like Rikki Doak. 

“The only one who discovered the World Cup is Renée [ Stenge]. There was good chemistry regardless of the girls we used. It shows depth. It's really important that it doesn't just rely on two or three athletes. »


The selections will take place at Place Bell for the first time instead of the Maurice Richard Arena which houses the National Centre. In October, the selections took place at the Ice Center in Quebec.

It will be a kind of preparation for the World Cup next fall. 

“It's a new ice and it will require the athletes to adapt,” indicated the head coach of the Canadian team. This is the case everywhere we go. We skated in Laval on Thursday. It will also be an opportunity for the organizing committee to prepare for the World Cup. »