Montréal, July 6, 2014 (Sportcom) – Judoka Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard came away with the biggest win of her young career, Friday, at the Ulan Bator Grand Prix presented in Mongolia. The athlete from Longueuil, Québec finished her day with a perfect record, highlighted by a victory over the Japanese Makiko Otomo in the grand finale.
Catherine’s coach, Nicolas Gill, was overjoyed by his athlete’s result. “It was a phenomenal performance by Catherine, who won four really tough bouts. Her two best victories were without a doubt against the ex-gold medalist, Hungarian Hedvig Karakas, who she beat with a shido, and versus the Japanese judoka in the finale. In that match, she scored a yuko early on and then was able to shut the Japanese down for the rest of the fight.”
“She’s now just a few precious points away from an Olympic selection,” coach Gill added.
Before her gold medal triumph, Beauchemin-Pinard’s best result in a Grand Prix was a 7th place finish obtained in Düsseldorf earlier this year. It’s the second gold medal of the year for the 20-year-old athlete, having been crowned champion at the Montevideo Pan-American Open in Uruguay this March.
In the semifinals, the big winner of the day got the better of the Hungarian Hedvig Karakas. Also falling to defeat at the hands of the Canadian were Hyein Lee (South Korea) and Tina Zeltner (Austria).
Of the other Canadians in action on day 1 of the tournament, Patrick Gagné finished 5th in the under 66 kg category. The Longueuil-native came ever so close to a podium finish. Taking on the Japanese Sho Tateyama in one of the two bronze medal matches, Gagné lost on points at the end of 5 minutes of regulation time.
Earlier in the semifinals, Gagné succumbed to defeat versus another Japanese, Tomofumi Takajo, here by way of an ippon. In the grand finale, Takajo walked away with gold after taking down the Mongol Tumurkhuleg Davaadorj.
As for Stéfanie Tremblay (-57 kg), she would lose her one and only match of the day, falling to the Swiss Fabienne Kocher.
The Grand Prix will continue tomorrow in Ulan Bator.