Dutch ladies collect silver medal in Team Pursuit

Dutch ladies collect silver medal in Team Pursuit

Team Jumbo-Visma speed skater Antoinette de Jong won a silver medal in the ladies’ Team Pursuit at the ISU World Single Distances Championships on Friday. Along with Ireen Wüst and Melissa Wijfje, she finished behind Japan.

De Jong, Wüst and Wijfje set a new national record at the Utah Olympic Oval, crossing the line in 2:52.65. The Dutch ladies beat the record by almost three seconds. At the 2018 Winter Olympics, Wüst, Wijfje and Marrit Leenstra had set a time of 2:55.48.

Nana Takagi, Ayano Sato and Miho Takagi (Japan) retained their world title in Salt Lake City. They shaved 0.11 seconds off their own 2017 world record, clocking a time of 2:50.76 to win gold ahead of the Netherlands and Canada (Ivanie Blondin, Valerie Maltais and Isabelle Weidemann): 2:53.62.

"For now, we can be happy with this outcome", De Jong said after the race. "However, we all know we can do a lot better than this. We should be able to beat Japan. Our final laps were not as good as the beginning. That is a shame. It is too bad we do not win gold, but we can be proud of our national record."

Roest has to settle for eighth place in men’s 10,000-meter race

A day after his disqualification in the men's 5,000-meter race, Patrick Roest had to settle for eighth place at 10,000 meters. The two-time world champion allround set a time of 13:03.90 on Friday. Graeme Fish (Canada) seized gold in a new world record. The 22-year-old speed skater beat the former record – set by Ted-Jan Bloemen (Canada) - by almost 2.5 seconds: 12:33,86 versus 12:36.30.

Bloemen, who had won the 5,000-meter race on Thursday, ended up in second place, crossing the line in 12:45.01, while Patrick Beckert (Germany) took bronze in a personal-best time of 12:47.93. Kazakhstan's Dmitry Morozov, Nicola Tumolero of Italy and Aleksandr Rumyantsev (Russia) started fast, but were simply not able to complete the 25 laps in the Utah Olympic Oval.

"I tried", a disappointed Roest said after his race. "At the beginning of the race, I already realized it was not going to happen today. My legs are not as good as during the first part of the season. That really sucks. I knew today's race was going to be tough, but I still wanted to give everything I could. Unfortunately, I was not good enough today."

Smeekens finishes twelfth

Team Jumbo-Visma skater Jan Smeekens finished twelfth in the men's 500-meter race on Friday. The former world champion set a time of 34.45. Pavel Kulizhnikov (Russia) took gold in 33.72, defeating his teammate and reigning champion Ruslan Murashov, who became only the third skater ever to beak the 34-second barrier, stopping the clock at 33.99.

"I am really happy with my start and the first corner", Smeekens said. "At the World Single Distances Championships, it is all or nothing. With that mindset I entered the final corner. Unfortunately, it did not go as well as I hoped it would. A time of 34.45 is not bad, but I did not come to Salt Lake City to get this result."

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