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Team Jumbo-Visma has concluded the speed skating season on a high note. The team of coach Jac Orie managed to win nine medals at the final tournament of the season, the ISU World Single Distance Championships. Antoinette de Jong (3,000m), Kai Verbij (1,000m) and Thomas Krol (1,500m) became world champion at Thialf, Heerenveen. In the Team Pursuit, the Dutch men and ladies both seized gold.
Krol put the icing on the cake on the final day of the tournament on Sunday. The 28-year-old speed skater of Team Jumbo-Visma won the men's 1,500-meter race with a time of 1:43.75 to secure his second world title of his career. His teammate Patrick Roest took bronze (1:45.49), while reign world champion Kjeld Nuis had to settle for silver (1:44.11).
By doing so, Krol also took revenge for his disqualification during the men's 1,000-meter race on Saturday. He was disqualified due to two false starts. A couple of minutes later, teammate Kai Verbij clinched his second world title in the 1,000m after becoming world champion at the Max Aicher Arena in Inzell in 2019. The tournament Krol won his first ever world title as well.
"This is the best revenge you can take," Krol said after his race on Sunday. "It is a relief as well. It was a tough weekend, mentally, in many aspects. Yesterday was a nightmare from which I wanted to wake up as quickly as possible. I can only blame myself for the two false starts in the 1000m, but regardless of that result I knew that I would have another super chance today."
"I am really happy and proud I was able to win today. To skate in the final pairing of the World Championships is not easy. You know all the previous times and that can distract you. But I prepared well for that and if you win it, it is most beautiful in the final pairing, because you know you have got it straight away. This is a great end to my season. I got my world title back. That's amazing!"
On the final day of the tournament, Carlijn Achtereekte also managed to win a medal. The 31-year-old speed skater, who is reign Olympic champion in the 3,000m, took bronze in the ladies' 5,000-meter race with a time of 6:52.22. She ended up behind Natalia Voronina (6:50.99) and winner Irene Schouten (6:48.53).
"My goal was to win here today. I am happy to win a medal, but for me, it is the wrong color," Achtereekte said. "It was a messy season and I wish I would have achieved more. At the ISU World Single Distance Championships you want to be at your best. I skated a good race today, but I lost way too much time in my last four laps. That is why I was not able to win."
"Today is the anniversary of my parents' wedding day and my mother not being with us anymore… I wanted to make her proud and I think I managed to do it. However, partly... I would rather have had that top spot on the podium."
Earlier in the tournament, De Jong clinched her maiden world title by winning the ladies' 3,000-meter race on Thursday. The 25-year-old speed skater of Team Jumbo-Visma also managed to take gold in the Team Pursuit along with Ireen Wüst and Irene Schouten: 2:55.79. In the men's Team Pursuit, Team Jumbo-Visma speed skaters Roest and Marcel Bosker seized gold along with the 19-year-old Beau Snellink (3:41.42)
Roest was the only speed skater of Team Jumbo-Visma, who took home a silver medal. The three-time world champion allround finished second in the men's 5,000-meter race on Thursday (6:10.05). Nils van der Poel won the gold medal in 6:08.39. On Sunday, the speed skater from Sweden showed great form by winning the men's 10,000-meter race in a world record time of 12:32.95. Roest had to settle for seventh place: 13:09.42.
Besides Achtereekte (5,000m) and Roest (1,500m), Dai Dai N'tab won a bronze medal as well. The 26-year-old sprinter ended up in third place in the men's 500-meter race on Friday. He set a time of 34.62, finishing behind Russian speed skater Pavel Kulizhnikov (34.54) and winner Laurent Dubreuil (Canada): 34.39.
Antoinette de Jong: 3,000m
Kai Verbij: 1,000m
Thomas Krol: 1,500m
Patrick Roest: 5,000m (m)
Carlijn Achtereekte: 5,000m (l)
Dai Dai N'tab: 500m
De Jong (with Ireen Wüst and Irene Schouten)
Roest and Marcel Bosker (with Beau Snellink)