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2009 Gatineau Loppet Round-up
By:  Team XC Ottawa   (2009/02/16)


It was a great weekend for racing! The tracks were fast, the Sun was shining and weather for a change was temperate. XC Ottawa skiers took full advantage of this to capture 4 podium spots in the weekend's premiere event the 53km Skate.

On the women's side XC Ottawa swept the podium - Sheila Kealey 1st, Megan McTavish 2nd and Eva Szabo 3rd.

It was good day for Sheila and Megan as they worked together at the front of their pack for 51km. At Mont Bleu Sheila charged up the last hill as hard as she could and succeeded in breaking away for the win. Sheila has a handful of second, third and fourth place finishes Gatineau Loppet, so a victory rounds out the collection nicely. Megan was also really happy with her race, which she deemed to be her best 50k ever.  Eva Szabo, who moved to Calgary for school (now work) had a great day and grabbed third place to complete the XC Ottawa sweep. While Eva isn't technically on the team this year we'll take some credit for her success - we waxed her skis, gave her feeds and she trained with Megan and Sheila for years.

On the men's side the winner used much the same strategy; crank up the pace with 10km left and let loose at Mont Blue. It was Thomas Friemuth currently ranked 7th in the World Loppet standings and last year's 3rd place finisher who would surge and manage to pull ahead of Karl Saidla by 8s for the win. You can read Karl's full report for all the details. Justin had an impressive race to finish 12th in his first Gatineau Loppet, while Craig was happy with 26th on the day.

Complete Results

Classic Races (Feb 14th, 2009): 5km, 16km, 28km, 53km
Skate Races (Feb 15th, 2009): 10km, 28km, 53km

53km Skate - Women

  1. Sheila Kealey, Ottawa, 2:23:36.5
  2. Megan McTavish, Chelsea, 2:24:01.0
  3. Eva Szabo, Calgary, 2:35:59.8

53km Skate - Men

  1. Thomas Freimuth, Luidberg, Germany, 2:06:53.0
  2. Karl Saidla, Chelsea, 2:07:00.9
  3. Luc Theriault, Lac Kenogami, Que., 2:07:08.4

Race Reports

Race Photos

Press Clippings

Interesting Reading. . .
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