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Team Jumbo-Visma has concluded the speed skating season on a high note. The team of coach Jac Orie completed a clean sweep in the men's 1,500-meter race with Kjeld Nuis winning a gold medal, Thomas Krol taking silver and Patrick Roest ending up in third place.
Multiple Olympic champion Nuis finished his rollercoaster season by beating his teammate Krol in the 1,500-meter race to take home the World Cup title. He crossed the line in a new track record of 1:43.00, beating the 2015 track record set by Denis Yuskov (Russia) by 0.36 seconds (1:43.36).
Krol, who had won the 1,000-meter World Cup title on Saturday, also beat Yuskov's old record. He ended up in second place with a time of 1:43.30. Reign world allround champion Roest completed the clean sweep for Team Jumbo-Visma, finishing third in 1:44.00, beating his personal best at Thialf by 0.12 seconds.
"I never thought I would be able to beat Yuskov's track record today", Nuis admitted after his race. "When I saw Roest skating a time of 1:44.00, I was like: I really need to do my best. My race went really well and it was a nice battle with Thomas. I have never skated a better 1,500-meter race than this one. This result came from the bottom of my heart."
"With this World Cup title, I put the icing on the cake. It feels really good to be the best at this distance once again, so I am going into the summer with a really nice feeling. Unfortunately, I was not able to skate a time of 1:42 today, but I have to be happy with this outcome."
Krol was disappointed after his second place in the 1,500-meter race. "I skated better than yesterday. This was one of my best 1,500-meter races of my career and my fastest ever at Thialf. I am satisfied with my race, but of course I wish I would have won here today. Much respect for Kjeld. He skated so fast and deserved the win today."
Roest was happy with his bronze medal. "It is always nice when you are able to improve yourself. Especially at Thialf, since we have already skated here a lot. I know there is still a huge gap between me and Kjeld, but I need to be satisfied with my time. It was a good race and I am happy I am able to finish off the season on a high note."
Earlier on Sunday, Antoinette de Jong finished fifth in the ladies' 1,500-meter race. The 24-year-old speed skater of Team Jumbo-Visma set a time of 1:54.80. Ireen Wüst succeeded to win in a new track record of 1:53.10 (was 1:53.30).
Foto's: Stephan Tellier