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31st MAG, Quebec City

 The gold medal champions of the International Masters Allround Games 2023, Quebec City:

TOP (L-R): Austin Carlson(USA); Mark Reiling(NED); Tjard Kopka(GER); Christiane Kloß(GER); Monique Boerema(NED); Henriëtta Goede(NED); Mijke Anne Kanneworff(NED); Gaston Roy(CAN)
MIDDLE (L-R): Sylvain Perreault(CAN); Gaétan Boucher(CAN); Kitty Phangnanouvong(CAN); Onar Westerheim(NOR); Anke Jannie Landman(NED);  Rebecca Simmons(USA); François Drolet(CAN)
FRONT (L-R): Katia Bilodeau(CAN); Barbara Johnson(USA); Vince Morris, 2nd Place(USA); Wibe Veenbaas(NED);  Arne Kjell Foldvik(NOR); Guylaine Larouche(CAN); Daan Spoelstra(NED); Colleen Lynch(CAN)
Missing: Joanna Walters(USA)

Report and results
From January 27th to 29th, 2023, the 31st IMSSC Masters Allround Games were held at the Centre de glaces Intact Assurance on the Gaétan-Boucher Oval in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.
A total of 126 skaters came to this beautiful new facility to compete.  There were 9 countries represented: Canada, Netherlands, United States of America, Germany, Romania, Great Britain, Japan, Finland, and Norway. The pre-race practice sessions began filling with familiar faces on Tuesday, and by the time Thursday arrived the sessions were filled with many smiling faces.  The general expression was that the ice was great and the facility was “top-notch.”

The Welcome Drink was held in the large main entry vestibule with views of the oval to one side and the mounds of fresh snow to the other, through the walls of glass that encapsulated this special social event.  The Master of Ceremony, François-Olivier Roberge introduced two speakers; Robert Dubreuil, General Manager of Speedskating Quebec, and Jean Pichette, Director of the Board of Directors for Speedskating Canada, who gave warm welcomes and good wishes to the crowd of competitors and guests.  The attendees learned that this would be the third Masters Games to be held in Quebec City. The first and second Masters Games were hosted by Quebec in 1996 and 2001.  With a show of hands, we all discovered that three registered participants of the 31st Game had also competed in BOTH of the previous Quebec City Masters Games.  It was well known by all, but Gaétan Boucher’s participation was recognized by M. Dubreuil.  This prompting an enthusiastic ovation, as he is a world renowned speed skater.

The competition was well organized and hard start times were honoured throughout.  Ice quality and environmental conditions remained consistent and excellent all weekend.|
There were tight competitions in several categories that gave skaters and spectators something to cheer for as podium step positions were being battled over:

Men 45 second/third places were decided by .006 sama log points.
Men 60 first/second/third places were decided by a sama log point spread of .615.
Men 65 first/second places were battled to a margin of .138 sama log points.

With an acknowledgement that some competitors were new to metric style speed skating, it is worth noting that 231 Season Bests, 138 Personal Bests, 5 IMSSC Records, 2 IMSSC sama log Records, and 1 Masters Best were skated at this event. Well done!
Here is the tally of podiums appearances by country:

  • The Netherlands:    20
  • Canada:                 20
  • USA:                       9
  • Germany:                5
  • Norway:                  2
  • Japan:                    1

The Closing Banquet was festive and well attended.  M. Roberge MC’d the event, and M. Dubreuil and Benoît Lamarche presented awards.  The volunteers (~80+), who played a major part in the success of the meet, were given a standing round of applause for their efforts!  Monique Vergeer-van Den Heuvel delivered her wonderful impressions of event and provided information about the 32nd Masters Allround Games to be held in Enschede, The Netherlands over March 8-9-10, 2024.

For those interested in coming to Quebec City during the summer, the Gaétan-Boucher Oval will be open with four sessions per week starting in June.  For details, contact the Centre de glaces at info@centredeglaces.ca or +1 581 983 9316.
Thank you to Tjerk Bartlema for the wonderful photographs: 

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/byls12sfxwmom38/AAA8xh20tb2zNO0btUdR5GEKa/Saison%202022-2023/2023-01-26;%20Jeux%20Mondiaux%20des%20Ma%C3%AEtres%20-%20World%20Masters%20Games/1.%20Images%20avec%20Logo?dl=0&subfolder_nav_tracking=1

A link to the results is here:
https://www.patinagedevitessequebec.ca/fr/page/competition/resultats_en_direct.html
(Select “Longue Piste”, then World Masters Games Allround)

About the author

Tjeerd Smies

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