Sport Shorts: Four Medals in all for Kershaw at Tour

Cross-Country Skiing: Likely the most demanding cross-country skiing event came to a close Sunday, with the Tour de Ski finishing under snowy Italian peaks. Two Canadians had been having tremendous results over the 8-stage event and both finished strong. Devon Kershaw (Sudbury, Ont.) on Saturday won a bronze medal in the 20 km event in another photo finish. (Watch here: After Sunday’s final race, he finished the Tour in 7th position overall – against the world’s best skiers. Kershaw won four medals in the Tour (one gold, two silvers, one bronze), more than doubling his career World Cup total. That gold medal was Canada’s third-ever by a Canadian man in cross-country skiing.

Teammate Alex Harvey (St-Ferreol-les-Nieges, Que., son of legendary skier Pierre Harvey) had an excellent Tour himself, with multiple top-10 finishes which helped solidify himself in 10th spot overall after Sunday. Ivan Babikov (Canmore, Alta.) had a tough Tour de Ski based on his high standards, but he saved his best for last. On Sunday he skied strong in the most punishing stage to finish 6th.

Alpine: Whistler’s Mike Janyk finished 5th on Sunday in slalom at a World Cup in Switzerland. This is the event he won a historic bronze medal in at the 2009 World Championships. Also battling the tough conditions were Brad Spence and Trevor White (both Calgary), who finished 17th and 20th respectively. Elsewhere, Janyk’s sister Britt was 9th in a super-G World Cup in Austria.

Speed Skating: Canadian speed skating champions were crowned over the weekend at the Calgary Olympic Oval. One of them was crowned four times. Christine Nesbitt (London, Ont.) continued her impressive season by never losing a race to her Canadian teammates in Calgary. She is the 2011 Canadian champion in the 500, 1,000, 1,500 and 3,000 metres. Nesbitt is the top women’s speed skater in this year’s World Cup season, dominant in the 1,500 and 1,000 metre races. On the men’s side, Denny Morrison (Fort St. John, B.C.) won gold medals in the 1,000 and 1,500 metre races. Congratulations to all Canadian champions.

Biathlon: Canada’s biathletes are gaining strength on the world stage. At a World Cup on Friday, Brendan Green (Hay River, N.W.T.) tied his career high with a 14th-place result in the 10 km sprint. In this race, Jean-Philippe Le Guellec (Shannon, Que.) was right behind in 16th spot. On Sunday, Le Guellec finished 20th in the elite 15 km mass start event, a race in which Green finished 25th. Only the top biathletes at a World Cup qualify for the mass start.

Squash: Squash is gaining steam in the province of Quebec. Quebec players won gold at both the men’s and women’s national team squash championships held over the weekend.

Water Polo: At Saanich Commonwealth Place in Victoria, Canada’s men’s water polo team will play Brazil and Argentina in order to qualify for the World Championships this summer in Shanghai. The top-two countries will advance.