Budapest / Hungary

Canada won the men’s 5000m relay at the Audi ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating after a strong finish, fighting back from third position after Pascal Dion (CAN) nearly fell with more than half of the race remaining.

After a strong Canadian start, Dion clashed with Korean star Seo Yi Ra (KOR) in the 21st of 45 laps, narrowly avoiding a loss of balance and crashing into the boards.

However, he and teammates Charles Hamelin (CAN), Charle Cournoyer (CAN) and Samuel Girard (CAN) fought back, sprinting from third to first position in the final nine laps.

"That was just incredible. It was a pretty good race, we managed to catch up on the Chinese and the Japanese and had a constant speed all the way to the end and were able to actually push for the win," Cournoyer said, eyeing a spot in the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games.

"First World Cup, first win – we couldn't have asked for a better start. That gives us a lot of room to qualify for the (Olympic) Games too. Now we are going to improve even more."

Triple Olympic gold medalist Charles Hamelin (CAN) had missed all individual finals in Budapest but was happy to end the weekend on top.

"Of course I would've wanted to be on the podium in one of the distances but I think that as a team we showed that we were really, really strong on the ice," he said.

"We showed that we have the skills and we have the speed to catch up on a fast pace in the race."

Pascal Dion said the Canada ladies relay silver just minutes before the men’s race had given his team inspiration.

"It's always nice to see the ladies step on the podium and do a very strong race, it pumps us up and we are all happy when we go out of the arena afterwards," he said.

China finished second and Japan got the bronze, Korea missing the podium for the only event this weekend.

In the Final B, Liu brothers Shaolin Sandor and Shaoang led Hungary to victory.

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