Speed ​​skating: Kim Boutin signs her best career result at the world

Kim Boutin achieved the best result of her career at the world championship, finishing second in the overall standings.

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With just a slim three-point lead in the overall standings after day one, Boutin knew it was all going to come down to the final two races of the day.

The four-time Olympic medalist had to bow to Minjeong Choi who won the 1000m and the 3000m Super Final each time ahead of Boutin to win the overall.

Choi had 107 points compared to 84 points for Boutin. Imperial all weekend, the Korean won a fourth career world title and a first since 2018.

constancy

“I’m happy with my championship because I’ve been consistent, which is very difficult to achieve,” said Boutin, whose best overall result before this year had been a 3and place in 2019. My consistency is what I’m most proud of. It was a great experience that shows where I am at and makes me realize what I need to improve. »

Two-man wrestling

Boutin concludes the world with three individual silver medals. Discarded from the A final in the 500m, Choi however won the other three events. The Super Final is for cumulative ranking purposes only and no medals are awarded.

“It was all for everything between the two of us, summarized Boutin. The winner of the Super Final would take the overall title. Due to the lack of very good skaters [Arianna Fontana et Suzanne Schulting entre autres]it was a one on one battle and that’s one more challenge. Minjeong is an endurance machine and I have to learn how to overtake. I managed my 3000 m well. “.

“Unlike the Games where the priority was to be happy, I added the competition component to the worlds, to continue Boutin who had lived a very painful experience at the 2018 Games in Pyeongchang. Despite this addition, I managed to keep smiling. I felt the stress, but it’s normal to experience ups and downs like in F-1. »

The Sherbrooke skater doesn’t want to look too far, but the chances of her making it to the start line in Italy in 2026 are very good. “I go there a year at a time, but I want to believe it, she said. I will be 31 in 2026 and it will be a great challenge. My performances in the World Cup give me the desire to go for even more. »

Vice-world champion in the cumulative last year, Courtney Sarault finished in 5and place.

“A 5and place is very good, she said. I’m very proud considering where I was two weeks ago. »

Revenge of the Relay

In the 3000m relay, Boutin and her teammates Sarault, Florence Brunelle and Alyson Charles savored their revenge from the Olympics when they finished just off the podium.

In a breathtaking final, the Canadian quartet won silver. From the outside, the Korean Choi blew the victory to the Canadians who had dominated throughout the race.

“We had a good race and bounced back from our performance in Beijing,” Boutin said. We were very united and we executed our plan well. I had a slight contact with the Dutchwoman in the last corner and I never saw the Korean coming from the outside. It’s been a long time since I finished a stint. »

In Beijing, Sarault had completed the relay. Canadian team coach Sébastien Cros has changed the order at the worlds. “We showed what we wanted,” mentioned Brunelle, who did not take part in the individual events. We held several team meetings. We bounced back and turned the page on Beijing. I was looking forward to going. With just one race, I learned to handle this situation. »

Dion is vice world champion

An unexpected result in the 3000m Super Final for the Montreal skater


Maple syrup tasted good in Pascal Dion's mouth at the end of the 3000m Super Final where he won the title of vice-world champion.

Poto Martin Alarie

Maple syrup tasted good in Pascal Dion’s mouth at the end of the 3000m Super Final where he won the title of vice-world champion.

Pascal Dion rocked the Maurice-Richard Arena with two overtakes in the last laps of the 3000m Super Final which allowed him to win the race and, above all, to get his hands on the title of world vice-champion at the cumulative ranking.

Pointing to 4and rank in the general classification before setting off for the last individual event of the day five points behind the two holders of second place, Dion played patiently before managing to overtake the Korean Lee June Seo and the Belgian Stijn Desmet, who ahead of him in the standings.

Already crowned champion for a second consecutive year overall after three events due to his three victories, the Hungarian Shaoang Liu only made an act of presence in the Super final, conserving his energies for the 5000m relay only 30 minutes later .

This runner-up title crowns by far the best season of his career for Dion, who won the World Cup title in the 1,000m, won two world medals in front of his fans and won Olympic gold in the relay.

“This title of world vice-champion means so much to me,” said Dion, who only had one World Cup medal before this season. It rewards all the work invested for so many years. I didn’t have high expectations going into the worlds. I didn’t expect to finish in second place overall. »

“My legs hurt so much during the Super Final,” continued Dion, who received warm hugs from coaches Sébastien Cros and Marc Gagnon after his victory. “The crowd played a big role and pushed me in the last laps. It’s such a fun feeling to feel the crowd. »

World Cup champion in the 1000m, Dion was unable to qualify for the A final of his favorite event, but he did not give up and he won the B final to collect valuable points in the ultimate battle for second place overall.

“The stakes were high in the Super Final because I didn’t have to let myself be overtaken,” he explained. As soon as one of my opponents tried to escape, I had to follow him. It was hard physically and mentally. »

With her silver medal in the 1500m and her victory in the B final in the 500m on Saturday, Dion finished with 63 points. Lee earned bronze with 55 points as Desmet finished in 4and place with 39 points. Olympic champion in the 500m in Beijing, Liu went it alone with 104 points.

For his part, Steven Dubois saw his career come to an end in the semi-final of the 1000m. His result was not enough to allow him to sneak into the top 8 skaters selected for the Super Final. He occupied the 10and rank in the cumulative ranking before the last day and he still had chances to climb the few missing steps. He finally concluded in 12and position, while Jordan Pierre-Gilles took the 16and place.

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