Ivanie Blondin of Ottawa, Ontario and Ted-Jan Bloemen of Calgary, Alberta each won World Cup speed skating silver medals in Stavanger, Norway on Sunday. Blondin won a silver medal in the women’s 5000m and Bloemen won the silver in the men’s 10000m.
Blondin posted a second place time of 6:57.34. The legendary 45 year-old Claudia Pechstein, the five-time Olympic gold medalist of Germany (the Gordie Howe of speed skating) won the gold medal with a time of 6:56.60 seconds. Martina Sablikova of the Czech Republic won the bronze medal with a time of 6:59.95.
Blondin reached the podium by 3.48 seconds over Isabelle Weidemann of Ottawa, Ontario, who finished in fourth place with a time of 7:00.82. It was the first women’s 5000m World Cup event of the 2017-18 season.
Bloemen posted a second place time of 12:52.64. Like Blondin, Bloemen lost to a speed skating legend as Sven Kramer, a three-time Olympic gold medalist from the Netherlands, won the World Cup gold medal with a time of 12:50.97. Erik-Jan Kooiman of the Nertherlands won the bronze medal with a time of 12:57.13.
Bloemen easily reached the podium. He was 8.6 seconds faster than Jorrit Bergsma of the Netherlands, who was in fourth place with a time of 13:01.24. Bloemen and Blondin are serious medal contenders for Canada in speed skating at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang.