Successful first day for British speed skaters at Invitation Cup
Britain’s short track speed skaters had an encouraging first day at the Invitation Cup today (Saturday 18th October) following a slow start in the early rounds. There were two top three positions for the GB squad in the women’s 1500m race with Elise Christie taking first place, whilst Charlotte Gilmartin finished third. Jack Whelbourne took second place in the men’s 1500m finals.
The Invitation Cup, which is held in Heerenveen, Holland, is a preparation competition for the squad ahead of the ISU World Cup Series, which begins next month in Salt Lake City (7-9thNovember).
Performance Director, Stuart Horsepool commented: “The skaters didn’t do particularly well in the early rounds of the 1500m races this morning, but they improved a lot throughout the day. We are treating this competition as a pre-season warm up and an opportunity for the squad to hone their skills ahead of the ISU World Cup Series which is now only a few weeks away.
“By the time we’d got to the semi finals today, everyone was skating well, with some strong performances beginning to shine through. Overall, it’s been a really useful first day and we are now looking forward to tomorrow’s racing”.
Tomorrow (Sunday 19th October) will see the final day of competition with all three senior ladies (Elise Christie, Charlotte Gilmartin and Kathryn Thomson) competing in the quarter finals of the 500m distance. Four senior men (Jon Eley, Richard Shoebridge, Paul Stanley and Jack Whelbourne) will compete in the 500m quarter finals and the men’s relay team will also race across 5000m in the men’s relay finals after finishing top in the heats this afternoon.