thumb Olympian Warsylewicz copyCanadian Olympic speed skater meets Calgarians at Chapters book launch

Calgary's Olympic Oval celebrated its 25th year in operation with the launch of its anniversary book, "The Fastest Ice in the World" at Chapters in Chinook Centre on Saturday.

Justin Warsylewicz, a member of the Canadian silver medal team-pursuit speed skating squad, showed off his medal from the 2006 Turin Winter Olympics and signed autographs for fans on the first day of sales for the coffee-table book.

The Oval's speed is what makes it stand out over all other rinks in the world, said Warsylewicz. He credited its notoriety to Calgary's location, as well as to the facility's dedicated workers.

"The altitude makes a big difference. And also the icemakers here in Calgary are really good. It's really high quality and they really take pride in the work they do. It really shows in the ice, " he said.

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Top Olympians to watch out for in Sochi

thumb Gilmore JunioThe 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia have officially begun, and Canada has sent 221 athletes to compete. The 2010 Olympic games, held on home soil in Vancouver, were a huge success for the Canadian Olympic team: they won five bronze, seven silver and 14 gold medals. According to the official Canadian Olympic team website, Canada also recorded "an all-time high of 71 top-eight finishes, which included 23 fourth- and fifth-place finishes (including medals)."

Needless to say, Canada's expectations are high for our athletes this year.

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Athletes talk about hobbies, food and what they love about our city

Calgary-based olympians Anastasia Bucsis, James McNaughton, Kimberly McRae and Hayley Wickenheiser keep it light in a conversation with Calgary Journal reporter Deja Leonard. 


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23-year-old Calgarian going for gold in men's long-track speed skating in Sochi

Gilmore receiving jacket

Gilmore Junio — the son of Filipino immigrants — embraced Canada's favourite past time at a very early age. A born and raised Calgarian, Junio enjoyed playing hockey and even had dreams of qualifying for the NHL one day.

However, his father — Gino Junio — suggested a different path.

"When I was 13, it kind of became apparent to my dad I wouldn't possess the size (he is 5-8 today) and strength to make it to the highest level," Gilmore Junio said in an interview via email.

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