by Paula Nichols
Morrison had missed qualifying for the Olympic team in the 1000m after he fell on the final turn at the Canadian trials and was instead the first alternate.
“Denny and I are made of the same fabric – we both want to win and represent our country at a level that reflects that passion,” said Junio in a statement. He felt that “how Denny is skating now, I believe it’s in the best interest of the team if he races. To represent Canada at the Olympics is a huge honour and privilege but I believe that as Canadians, we’re not just here to compete; we are here to win. Denny has proven to be a consistent medal threat in the distance”.
Morrison has twice been a silver medallist in the 1000m at the World Single Distances Championships in 2007 and 2009 to go with a bronze in 2008, but finished a disappointing 13th at Vancouver 2010. He had been fourth in two 1000m World Cups this season.
At training on Tuesday Morrison said “Gil is a great teammate. He told me that he wanted me to race. This is an amazing gesture and I’m ready to make the most of this opportunity.”
He also noted that his late entrance into the event relaxed him and he was looking to use the race as part of his preparation for the 1500m.