Friday, March 4, 2005 - Results
Crawford and 'Fifty-Sprint' Take Canadian Sprint Titles

There weren't many surprises at the Canadian National Championships in Prince George, BC today, as perennial sprint favorites Sean Crooks and Chandra Crawford both dominated the men's and women's races to capture the national titles. Warm conditions continued in Prince George with temperatures reaching the high teens in the afternoon. Racers in the 1km classic sprint fought through wet and soggy snow conditions on a quickly deteriorating course that was only held together by the hard work of race volunteers.

Sprint king Sean Crooks, aka Fifty Sprint, led each of his heats after dominantly winning the qualification round, and was never really challenged as he powered his way around the wet and slushy course to claim the first national title of his career. Disabled national team skier Brian McKeever, who has hit on an impressive string of form this week, captured his second medal in as many races, taking the silver. Dave Nighbor charged to the line and narrowly beat Charles Nadeau for the bronze medal.

It was much the same story on the women's side. Crawford led each heat and was able to overcome a late race charge from Dasha Gaiazova to capture gold. Quebec skiers Christine Bisson took the bronze medal after a strong qualifying time, just behind Crawford. Tasha Betcherman took fourth place in her first race of the week. Betcherman has been sidelined by a flu bug that hit her last week.

The junior men's competition was won by Chris Werrell, who secured a spot on the Canadian World Junior team with his performance. On the junior women's side Perianne Jones won for the third time in as many races this week, to reconfirm her status as Canada's top female junior. The junior girls race was won by BibianeMahy, while AnthonyGauvin won his first race of the week. EmilyNishikawa won the juvenile girls sprint, and EvanBruce took his second gold of the week in juvenile boys.

The Canadian Championships wrap up on Sunday with distance mass start skate races.

Complete results are available at zone4.ca.


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