LAKE PLACID - Nearly 40 American and Canadian speedskaters competed in the Jack Shea Sprints Saturday and Sunday at the Olympic Oval.
The Sprints were named for legendary local speedskater and Olympic gold medalist Jack Shea. A 500-meter and 1,000-meter race were skated each day, with winners awarded in each age category as well as overall.
Jack Shea's son Jim, also an Olympian, was on hand to award medals and trophies to the participants for the second year in a row. Jim Shea expressed his gratitude to the local organizers for their hard work in maintaining speedskating meets in Lake Placid.
Patrick Kelly, right, accepts the men’s overall trophy from Jim Shea on Sunday after successfully defending his title in the Jack Shea Sprints at the Olympic Speedskating Oval in Lake Placid.
(Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)
"I was very happy with the number of skaters and the volunteers who helped run the event," said meet director Tom Miller. "ORDA came through with great ice and everyone went home very happy."
Local skaters Patrick Kelly and Esther Munoz performed well at the Shea Sprints meet. Kelly, a two-time speedskating Olympian for Canada, won both the overall title and his age category (masters 41-50). It was the second year in a row Kelly won the overall trophy. He is a member of the Lake Placid Speed Skating Club.
Despite harsh weather and rougher ice conditions, Munoz skated a personal best 500-meter time on Sunday, finishing in 46 seconds to earn a bronze medal competing one level above her usual age class in Junior B.
Isabelle Weidemann of Ontario skated away with the female overall trophy. Weidemann skates with the Ottawa Pacers club.
The Lake Placid racing series continues at the Olympic Oval with the Charles Jewtraw All Around Championships on Jan. 5 and 6. An official's workshop will be hosted concurrently. For more information on the meet, visit www.lakeplacidoval.com.