Barista Mayeur helps deliver golden performance at Calgary speed skating event


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Your neighborhood barista, who makes your lean latte without a whisk, is as cold as it gets.

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But there’s nothing casual about Hayden Mayeur, owner of Hayloft Café, when he walks the ice at the Calgary Olympic Oval.

“Originally it was an outlet to connect with the community,” said the 24-year-old speed skater from Toronto. “Athletes these days don’t have a lot of ways of speaking to the public when it comes to amateur sport.

Mayeur runs the espresso bar from a 1978 Citroën 2CV truck and focuses on private events such as weddings and showhouses in the Calgary area.

“Speed ​​Skating Canada has been great, but at the end of the day we have to find external sources of revenue,” he said. “This is where I was headed when I created Hayloft and now we are here and it has worked well so far.”

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In recent weeks, however, speed skating has become a priority of his attention.

Mayeur finished the ISU Four Continents Long Track Championship with a pair of medals. The first was a silver medal on Thursday in the mass start, his race of choice. The second came on the final day of racing, as the Canadian men’s pursuit team of veteran Ted-Jan Bloemen of Calgary and his youngest teammates Mayeur and Kaleb Muller of Cranford, Alta. blown away the competition by winning a gold medal. medal with a quick time of 3: 37.22.

Kazakhstan was far second in 3: 51.60, while South Korea took bronze in 3: 54.37.

The winning effort was faster than Team Canada’s bronze medal at the ISU World Cup last week in Calgary (3: 38.60).

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“It was a very fast race,” admitted Bloemen of his third medal at the competition. “The key was that we started a little faster. We still held on very well at the end.

“It was just fun being on this team,” Muller said.

“We skated for the first time together about two and a half hours ago,” says Mayeur. “We just went there to have fun and see what we could accomplish. Honestly, I couldn’t believe my eyes at first. It was quite impressive to see that time. It’s an honor to be able to skate with someone as accomplished as Ted in an event like this.

Mayeur, along with a number of other Canadians, is expected to leave for the Olympic trials in Quebec City later this month on Monday, unless those are moved due to new strict COVID protocols by the Quebec government. On Friday there were unfounded rumors that they might come to Calgary.

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“I’m a bit of a joker,” Mayeur admitted. “I have a lot of room to grow and a lot of room to go faster. But that doesn’t mean that I won’t go to these trials and give everything I can in the hopes of maybe getting a spot somewhere.

Denis Kuzin of Kazakhstan won the men’s 1000m in 1: 08.63, narrowly eclipsing 1: 08.75 over American Austin Kleba. Wei-Lin Tai of Chinese Taipei was third (1: 09.19). Canadians Anders Johnson, Jess Neufeld and Frank Roth were sixth, seventh and eighth respectively.

On the women’s side, Kali Christ of Regina won her third medal of the competition, claiming a bronze in the women’s 1000m. Christ posted a time of 1: 16.50. The two fastest skaters were Yu-Ting Huang of Chinese Taipei (1: 14.45) and Yekaterina Aidova of Kazakhstan (1: 15.49).

Later that day, Christ added a fourth medal, a silver, in the women’s team pursuit, with Laura Hall of Salmon Arm, BC, and Lindsey Kent of Winnipeg. The trio posted a time of 3: 08.69, behind the triumphant US contingent of Giorgia Birkeland, Jamie Jurak and Dessie Weigel, crossing the finish in 3: 08.18. The bronze went to South Korea.

For the well-decorated Jurak, it was their fourth medal of the Four Continents Championships. She also won gold in the 3000m, silver in the women’s mass start and bronze in the 1500m.

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