CANOE NAGANO '98 ISP DIRECTORY
Patrick Bouchard - Long Track Speed Skating
Patrick Bouchard, no relation to Sylvain Bouchard, was a pleasant surprise
for the Canadian speed skating team in 1996-97. Bouchard had shown
potential in the past. He was the second youngest members of Canada's 1994
Olympics team. But he struggled the next couple of seasons and it seemed
his career was over before it hardly began.
Then suddenly last season Bouchard, 24, posted some impressive results.
The highlight was a sixth place in the 500 metres at a World Cup event in
Calgary in a Canadian record 36.01 seconds. He capped the campaign earning
his first national 500 crown. Even Bouchard was stunned with his
"I never thought I'd be this close to the top last season," he said. "I'm
way ahead on my plan. My starts and turns have improved dramatically and I
feel I can already start aiming for a medal at the Olympics. There's still
a lot of aspects I need to improve but I've overcome the major problems."