Canada claimed a second gold medal at the world under-23 cross-country ski championships in Planica, Slovenia, with Sunday’s victory in the mixed relay. The team of Derek Deuling from Whitehorse, Jasmine Drolet of Rossland, B.C., Mac Hollman of Thunder Bay, Ont., and Lilian Gagnon of Quebec City edged out France and Sweden in heavy rain to take home the gold.
On Tuesday, Sonjaa Schmidt of Whitehorse became the first Canadian to win gold at the world under-23 championships in the women’s sprint. Despite ranking sixth after the first two legs of Sunday’s 20k relay, Hollman closed a 15-second gap on the front-runners to just 2.2 seconds when he handed off to Gagnon for the anchor leg. Gagnon then made her move over the final 150 meters in a sprint to the line.
The Canadians edged France by seven-tenths of a second and Sweden by eight-tenths of a second in this hard-fought race. “I’ve been wanting one of these for a while,” said Gagnon, who finished eighth behind her teammate Schmidt in the women’s sprint earlier in the week.