Canada’s Charles Hamelin Off To A Good Start With 1500m Sochi Gold
Keep your eyes on Canadian Charles Hamelin over the next few weeks, racing around the speed skating track inside the Iceberg Skating Palace in Sochi. The Quebec native kicked off his campaign in Russia this week by winning gold in the 1500m race. This is significant because out of his four events this winter in Sochi, the fourteen lap, 1500m race is not considered his strongest event. Already with one top podium spot, Hamelin could potentially be bringing a lot of hardware home to his native country.
The 29-year-old is the defending gold medalist from Vancouver in the 500m and 5000m relay, but now he has a gold in the 1500m to his name; an event in which he placed 7th in 2010. He will also contend for the individual 1000m podium this week.
Hamelin’s time of 2:14.985 seconds was enough to hold off China’s Han Tianyu who took silver with a time of 2:15.055. The bronze medalist came in the form of Russia’s Viktor Ahn at 2:15.062. This was a significant accomplishment for the host nation as it was their first ever short-track speed skating medal.
‘‘It’s so many emotions,’’ Hamelin said. ‘‘I have put so much work into it.’’