It was an historic day for Canada in men’s bobsled at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang. It was also a case of déjà vu. Justin Kripps of Summerland, British Columbia and Alexander Kopacz of London, Ontario won the gold medal on Monday with a time of 3:16.86. But wait, the German duo of Francesco Friedrich and Thorsten Margis also posted a winning time of 3:16.86, so four bobsledders stepped on top of the podium, with nobody on their left and the Latvian duo of Oskars Melbardis and Janis Strenga on their right.
Remarkably however Kripps and Kopacz are not the only Canadians in the history of the Olympic Winter Games to win the gold medal in two-man bobsled. At the 1998 Olympic Winter Games in Nagano, the great Pierre Lueders of Edmonton, Alberta teamed up with Dave MacEachern of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island to win a gold medal with a time of 3:37.24.
The similarities between Kripps and Kopacz along with Lueders and MacEachern are endless. Not only did both of their victories come in Asia, and the fact that each driver was from western Canada and each brakeman was from eastern Canada that is fascinating. Just like Kripps and Kopacz, Lueders and MacEachern needed to share their Olympic gold medal. Both Lueders and MacEachern were tied with Gunther Huber and Antonio Tartaglia of Italy.
It was also a good day for three Canadian women’s teams. In curling, it was a dominant performance for the Canadian team skipped by Rachel Homan of Ottawa, Ontario. Team Canada had a big four ender in the fifth end against Satsuki Fujisawa in a 8-3 Canada victory. With the win, Canada improved to a record of 3-3.
In women’s hockey, Canada is off to the gold medal game for the sixth straight Olympic Winter Games. On Monday, Canada trounced the Olympic Athletes from Russia 5-0 and will now play the United States in the gold medal game. The United States also won their semi-final game by a score of 5-0 as they knocked off Finland. The gold medal game will take place Wednesday evening in Canada at 8pm PT.
Finally in women’s speed skating, the Canadian trio of Ivanie Blondin and Isabelle Weidemann of Ottawa, Ontario and Josie Morrison of Edmonton, Alberta have reached the semi-finals in the women’s team pursuit. Blondin, Weidemann and Morrison had the third fastest time in the quarterfinals as they posted a time of 2:59.02. Canada will face Japan in one semi-final and the Netherlands will face the United States in the other semi-final. The semis will take place on Wednesday.