Isabelle Weidemann lowers national 5k record at Canadian speed skating trials


Isabelle Weidemann is making an early impression at the Canadian long track speed skating championships in Calgary.

Weidemann skated to a national record in the 5,000 metres on Thursday with her time of six minutes 46.81 seconds, besting her previous mark of 6:47.34 set in 2019.

It’s a second straight day of success for the Ottawa native, who beat out a competitive 3,000-metre field to win on the opening day of trials on Wednesday.

The national championships help finalize the Canadian team members for the upcoming season, which includes the Beijing Olympics that begin on Feb. 4.

Laura Hall, an 18-year-old from Salmon Arm, B.C., was Weidemann’s lone competitor, clocking in at 7:22.61.

But for Weidemann it’s the perfect start to a season in which she hopes to avenge her Olympic disappointment of 2018 where she placed fourth in the team pursuit while collecting sixth- and seventh-place finishes in individual events.

Meanwhile, Ted-Jan Bloemen joined Weidemann in collecting his second victory of trials.

Bloemen took top spot in the 10,000 — the distance in which he won 2018 Olympic gold — with a time of 12:41.55. The 35-year-old Dutch Canadian previously won the 5,000 on Wednesday in Calgary.

Graeme Fish, a 24-year-old who stunned Bloemen in the 10,000 at the 2020 world championships, placed second at 12:49.33, while Jordan Belchos rounded out the field with his time of 13:02.75.

Bloemen and Fish headline a strong slate of Canadian men’s skaters, appearing poised to contend for multiple podiums each in Beijing.

Live coverage from Calgary continues on CBCSports.ca on Friday at 6 p.m. ET with the women’s and men’s 1,000.

WATCH | Day 1 of the long track national championships:

Canadian Long Track Championships

Catch all the action from the 2021 Canadian long track speed skating championships in Calgary. 3:13:34

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