Short Track International Invitation Cup, Heerenveen, Netherlands 2 & 3 Oct 2010

Great Britain’s Short Track Speed Skating National Team opened their 2010/2011 international season in fine form this weekend in Heerenveen, Netherlands at the International Invitation Cup. Teams from Great Britain, Netherlands, Germany, Hungary, Belgium and Latvia took part.

Elise Christie, kick started her season by being unbeaten throughout the individual competition,  Elise took 1st place in all three distances 1500m, 500m, 1000m, giving her an accumulated total of 102 points, some 60 points ahead of her nearest rival Annita Van Doorn (NED).  Charlotte Gilmartin placed 5th in the 1500m, 7th in the 500m and 5th in the 1000m giving her 5th place overall, team mate Alex Whelbourne was 15th Overall.

In the men’s competition Jack Whelbourne took 1st place in the 500m and 4th in both the 1500m and 1000m giving Jack 2nd place overall. Paul Stanley placed 2nd in the 500m, and 5th in the 1500m but a 10th place in the 1000m distance left him in 5th place overall. Anthony Douglas, placed 7th Overall. Richard Shoebridge making his debut in a Great Britain race suit placed 12th overall with Ian Upcott in 13th.


Short Track World Cup Bronze Medal for Great Britain.

Short Track’s Elise Christie has made a great start to her World Cup season winning the Bronze medal in the Ladies 1000m in Quebec Canada.

The Great Britain Short Track Speed Skating team have been in action in the first two events of the World Cup series over the past two weekends, the World Cup series consists of six events, two in North America, two in Asia and two in Europe. The two events both in Canada were attended by over 150 athletes from 21 different countries.

The team of:                                                                                                 
Men - Paul Stanley, Anthony Douglas, Richard Shoebridge, Jack Whelbourne   
Ladies - Elise Christie, Charlotte Gilmartin and Alex Whelbourne

travelled to Montreal, Canada for the first of the events where they recorded some improved results. Elise Christie placed 6th in the 500m and 7th in the 1500m. In the Men’s events, Richard Shoebridge in his first World Cup competing for Great Britain finished 6th in the 1000m and Anthony Douglas placed 11th in the 1500m. Due to an ankle injury sustained in training Jack Whelbourne was unable to compete at this event so Men’s Relay team were forced to withdraw. The racing was fast in Montreal with many of the British skaters setting new lifetime personal bests.

The team then travelled to Quebec, for the second of the events, here Elise repeated her performance of the previous weekend by again winning the Ladies 1500m ‘B’ Final which placed her 7th Overall in that distance. Elise then moved on to the 1000m distance which saw her win all of her races through the qualifying rounds, to gain a place in the ‘A’ Final. Elise took the Bronze medal behind Yang Zhou (CHN) Gold and Katherine Reutter (USA) Silver. Both of these athletes were the Vancouver Gold and Silver Medallists.
Jack Whelbourne who is still only a junior returned to senior competition after an ankle injury and performed outstandingly to qualify through to the ‘A’ Final of the Men’s 1000m where he finished in 5th place, Jack also won the ‘B’ Final in the 1500m distance to give him 7th place overall. Team mate Anthony Douglas added to the British skaters improved results by qualifying into his first ‘A’ Final at a World Cup where he took 7th place in the 1500m, a step forward from last week’s competition where he reached the ‘B’ Final.

Performance Director Stuart Horsepool said ‘this has been a good start to the four year cycle with younger athletes making a breakthrough at World level. The next challenge will be for these athletes to make their performances more consistent’.


First Outing of GB Squad’s Junior Members

The newest members of the Great Britain Short Track Speed Skating Squad travelled to Milan, Italy last weekend for the first of the Junior Star Class events. Josh Cheetham, Billy Simms and Tristton Adams who have been training with the Squad for just four months now, were skating in their first international competition as members of the GB Squad.

Josh Cheetham performed very well in the Junior A section (17-19yrs). Josh placed 5th in the 500m setting a new personal best time of 45.578secs in the semi-finals, 3rd in the 1500m and 2nd in the 1000m gave Josh an overall result of 3rd place.

Billy Simms (Jun B 15-17yrs) was 6th overall after a good performance in the 1000m where he finished n 4th place.

Tristton Adams (Jun B) finished 5th in the 500m but placed 28th Overall  after slipping down the rankings during the other two distances.

Short Track’s Performance Director Stuart Horsepool said ‘these results are very encouraging and as these Juniors gain more international experience and continue to train with the more senior members of the squad then better results can be expected in the future’

 ‘Junior Star Class’ are a series of three qualifying competitions in western Europe which sees the top 8 skaters in each Junior category  qualifying into the Junior European Cup Finals which take place in March 2011.