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The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Canadian Olympian Brittany Schussler retires from competitive speedskating

WINNIPEG - Canadian Olympian Brittany Schussler has retired from competitive long-track speedskating.

The 29-year-old from Winnipeg has competed internationally for 13 seasons and this past year was named Speed Skating Canada's top female long-track skater.

"Competing with Canada written on my skin suit has been the biggest honour I could ever ask for, and something that I have never taken for granted," Schussler said on her website.

"I could not be more proud to be Canadian, and that was never more true than at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics. The energy and support of the crowd that I felt in my first Olympic race, the 1,000 metres, is perhaps my favourite moment of my entire career."

Schussler represented Canada at three Olympic Games. In Vancouver in 2010, she took fifth place in the team pursuit event, 25th in the 1,000 metres and 35th in the 1,500. In Sochi in 2014, she was fifth in the pursuit, 19th in the 3,000 metres, 26th in the 1,500 and 30th in the 1,000.

She was also an alternate for the 500-metre and pursuit events at the 2006 Turin Games.

Schussler was part of team pursuit squads that won gold at the 2009 and 2011 world single distance long-track championships and silver in 2008 and 2012. She was also part of nine pursuit World Cup gold medals, to go with five silver and a bronze.

Individually, she won one World Cup silver and five bronze medals in the 1,500, along with a bronze in the 3,000. Her final medal was a bronze in the 1,500 last November in Astana, Kazakhstan.

Schussler is part of the Canadian trio that set the women's pursuit record time of two minutes 55.79 seconds at Calgary's Olympic Oval on Dec. 6, 2009.

"The devotion and passion she brought to the sport helped to promote speed skating and values promoted by our sport not only on the ice, but also outside the rink," Speed Skating Canada president Jim Allison said in a release.

"Congratulations Brittany and good luck for your next steps."

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