Charles Hamelin wants to win the only thing he’s never won

It’s definitely almost spring because many winter sports are finishing up their seasons this weekend, including short track speed skating.

World Championships are being held in Moscow from Friday to Sunday. Veterans Charles Hamelin and Marianne St-Gelais headline a team mixed with Olympians and new talent.

Hamelin, a four-time Olympic medallist, has never won an overall world title in 12 straight appearances at Worlds. He was runner-up in 2007 and 2011, third place in 2009, 2013, and 2014. It takes a great deal of versatility to capture the title, skaters must do the 500m, 1000m, and 1500m individual races. Ranking points are added up and the top-eight athletes get to compete in the 3000m super final for more points.

“I am aiming for nothing less than being world champion,” said Hamelin in a release. “To be able to do that, I’ll have to be consistent and smart in my races, while avoiding being disqualified in order to get the maximum amount of points available.”

The last Canadian male world champion was five-time Olympic medallist Marc Gagnon in 1998.

A look at Charles Hamelin’s season

Competed in: All six World Cups
Individual or relay medals (8):
 1 gold, 3 silver, 4 bronze

On the women’s side, Marianne St-Gelais has won eight individual medals this World Cup season. Her best finish at World Champs was fourth in 2013. “I needed to put my last few seasons behind me,” said St-Gelais. “This year, I found myself again as a skater. I learned to love racing again, to have fun in my races while still learning from them. For me, this is a great return to form!”

Five skaters will be World Champs rookies, including Genève Bélanger, Kim Boutin, Kasandra Bradette, Patrick Duffy, and Samuel Girard. That’s half the team. The others are Olympians Guillaume Bastille, Olivier Jean, last year’s third place finisher Valérie Maltais, plus Hamelin and St-Gelais.

A look at Marianne St-Gelais’ season

Competed in: All six World Cups
Individual or relay medals (12):
 2 gold, 4 silver, 6 bronze