Gold for Dubreuil, silver for women's team sprint at World Cup in the Netherlands

HEERENVEEN, Netherlands — Canada's Laurent Dubreuil raced to victory in the 500 metres to lead Canada on a two-medal day at the ISU speedskating World Cup.

The Canadian women's team sprint captured a silver medal Saturday in the season's first race.

Dubreuil, from Levis, Que., had to reset after being charged with a false start, but got off the line quickly in the 500 en route to a time of 34.34 seconds.

"It was a really good race," Dubreuil said. "I am happy with my first victory of the year and the way that I skated today. The time to beat before I raced was quite difficult to chase, but I was able to stay focused on my goal of skating to win.

"I had a much better start than last week and then an excellent lap. The final corner was the best of my life in the 500."

Japan's Wataru Morishige (34.44) was second, while Merijn Scheperkamp of the Netherlands (34.69) too bronze.

After two events, Dubreuil sits atop the World Cup standings in the distance.

In the women's team sprint, Carolina Hiller of Prince George, B.C., Brooklyn McDougall of Calgary and Ottawa's Ivanie Blondin got off to a slow start, but quickly closed the gap in the three-lap race.

By the time Blondin crossed the line in 1:27.45, her quick final lap had earned Canada the silver medal. The Dutch team crossed in 1:26.57 to win gold, while the Americans captured bronze (1:27.72).

The World Cup medal was a first for Hiller and McDougall.

The event concludes Sunday with the men's 1500, women's 500, women's 3000 and men's team sprint.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Month Date, 20XX.

The Canadian Press