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Canadian Christine Nesbitt wins two more World Cup gold medals

Winner Christine Nesbitt of Canada skates during the women's 1500 metre race at the ISU World Cup Speed Skating in Astana, Kazakhstan, Sunday, Dec. 2, 2012.

Alexei Filippov/AP

Canada's Christine Nesbitt added to her gold-medal collection Sunday, winning the 1,500 metres at a long-track speedskating World Cup.

The London, Ont., native then teamed up with Ivanie Blondin of Ottawa and Brittany Schussler of Winnipeg to win the team pursuit.

Nesbitt, who has two gold and a bronze in the 1,500 metres this season, raced to a time of one minute 57.18 seconds. Dutch teammates Marrit Leenstra and Linda de Vries took silver (1:57.29) and bronze (1:57.30).

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"It was an OK race. I had a good opener and first lap, so the first 700 metres was decent," Nesbitt said. "In the last two laps I was struggling to keep smooth. My last lap was painful but it was just enough to hold off a win.

"It's a nice way to finish the 1,500 World Cups this fall. I'm definitely looking forward to coming back this winter and finishing stronger."

In the women's team pursuit, Canada's threesome improved on their bronze-medal finish from their World Cup opener in the Netherlands. They crossed in 2:58.40, 2.15 seconds faster than South Korea. The Netherlands won bronze in 3:00.71.

"It was definitely a tough mental race to get through but knowing that I had Brittany and Christine there by my side made it all that much easier," Blondin said. "This is our third year all training together, which is why we are able to work so well as a team. We know each other's strengths and weaknesses. It makes it all that much easier to work together, be strong and be able to skate like we did today."

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