Today was not only a great day for Canadian athletes on Day Three of the 2014 Winter Olympics, but most big names are also Montreal-area natives.
Before today, no Canadian male had successfully repeated an Olympic gold medal but that number is now one. Alex Bilodeau became the first freestyle skier in any discipline and any gender to repeat an Olympic championship and the first Canadian male to repeat a gold medal.
It was not easy for Bilodeau who made several mistakes in round two of the final and finished eighth in that round. He rebounded to make the final round of six skiers and had his best performance in that round.
Mikael Kingsbury, also from the Montreal area finished in the silver medal position – a situation exactly like the women’s side of the docket where Justine and Chloe Dufour-Lapointe finished on the top two steps of the podium. It was almost a Canadian – and Montreal – sweep as Marc-Antoine Gagnon finished just outside the medals in fourth spot.
The other Montreal gold medal came from Charles Hamelin from Sainte Julie, south of Montreal. Hamelin finished seventh in the 1500m short track event in Vancouver but ended up rebounding and winning his first medal of the 2014 Olympics.
Hamelin is usually better at the shorter distances – the 1000m and 500m – than the 1500m which perhaps bodes well for the rest of his Olympics but nothing can be taken for granted in short track where one wrong move by your opponent can spell the end of your race.
Regardless it is a much better result for Hamelin than the disappointment that surrounded the opening result in Vancouver. Hamelin, of course sealed the championship with a kiss from his girlfriend and fellow speed skater Marianne St-Gelais.
FULL DAY THREE RESULTS
Men’s Moguls – Run 3, Final
Alexandre Bilodeau: 26.31 GOLD
Mikael Kingsbury: 24.71 SILVER
Marc-Antoine Gagnon: 23.35, 4th
Women’s Hockey : W 3-0 vs Finland
Meghan Agosta-Marciano (Montreal Stars – CWHL), 1 Goal
Men’s Short Track Speed Skating, 1500m
Charles Hamelin, GOLD
Francois Hamelin, 4th Semi Final 1 | 2nd B (Small) Final
Men’s Long Track Speed Skating, 500m
Muncef Ouardi, 70.997, 25th