Tuesday, March 16, 2004 - Results
Kershaw, Scott Strike Canadian Championships Gold

Individual racing got underway today at the Canadian Championships in Charlo, New Brunswick with classic races. This marks the first year since 2001 that all the top Canadian athletes have attended their National Championships, and it made for some exciting racing with few surprises at the top of the results board.

Olympic gold medalist in the pursuit, Beckie Scott, stormed home after collecting World Cup medals on the weekend, to win the women's 5km classic race in a time of 15 minutes and 29.3 seconds. Scott nipped teammate and World Cup star Sara Renner by just 2.8 seconds, followed by Milaine Theriault 48.2 seconds back. Tomorrow should be an exciting battle between Scott and Renner in the 10km skate pursuit.

In the men's 7.5km classic it was Devon Kershaw - less than 24-hours off the plane home from the World Cup in Europe - taking the win in a time of 18 minutes and 30.6 seconds. Kershaw beat out Ivan Babikov of the X-C.com ski team by 6.5 seconds. Chris Jeffries took the final step on the podium 20.9 seconds back.

Junior National titles on the line also made for exciting racing in the younger age categories. David Nighbor won the junior men's competition with a time that would have placed him 7th in the senior category. Nighbor was followed by Edward McCarthy in second and Casey Dyck in 3rd. In the junior women's race is was Perianne Jones in first, followed by Crystin Jaques in second and Marcia Birkigt in third.

In the junior boys competition Brent McMurtry took the win in a time of 20 minutes and 39.3 seconds, beating out Chris Butler by 13.7 seconds. Christian Ruel took 3rd. The junior girl's race was won by Amanda Ammar ahead of Junior National teammate Viktoria Koskenoja. Claude Godbout took third.

The juvenile boys competition was won by Haakon Lenes. Alex Harvey took second followed by Evan Bruce in third. Natasha Kullas won the juvenile girls 5km classic race by 22.4 seconds over Alysson Marshall. Sara Hewitt took 3rd.

Racing continues all week in Charlo, finishing with distance mass start races on Sunday.

Complete results are available at http://www.skinationals.ca/races/16.html.

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