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Team Jumbo-Visma clinches ten medals at second and final World Cup

Team Jumbo-Visma clinches ten medals at second and final World Cup

Team Jumbo-Visma had another successful weekend at the ISU World Cup. The team clinched ten medals at the final tournament ahead of the ISU World Single Distance Championships. Nine times a speed skater of the team of coach Jac Orie managed to win an individual medal this weekend, after Antoinette de Jong had won silver in the ladies' Team Pursuit on Friday.

Team Jumbo-Visma speed skaters Kai Verbij (1,000m), Thomas Krol (1,500m) and Patrick Roest (5,000m) seized gold at Thialf, Heerenveen. Just like last week, Roest succeeded to win the men's 5,000-meter race on Sunday. The three-time world champion allround set the second fastest time ever at Thialf: 6:05.95, after smashing his own track record last week: 6:05.14.

With his time, the 25-year-old speed skater finished way ahead of Nils van der Poel (Sweden), who won silver in 6:08.39. Sergey Trofimov (Russia) won the bronze medal (6:10.86). Team Jumbo-Visma speed skater Sven Kramer, who managed to win silver last week, ended up in fourth place (6:11.21) and Marcel Bosker finished ninth: 6:14.29.

"It was simply just another good race today", Roest said afterwards. "This is a very good preparation for the ISU World Single Distance Championships. I am happy I was able to win the men's 5,000-meter race twice this very short World Cup season. When I saw Van der Poels' time, I just really wanted to skate faster than him. Fortunately, I made it happen. I am pleased with today's outcome, but I still think I can skate faster than this."

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Verbij beats teammate Krol and takes gold with personal best at Thialf

Verbij left all of last weekend's troubles behind by winning the men's 1,000-meter race in 1:07.35, the second-fastest time behind Pavel Kulizhnikov's track record. Last Sunday, Verbij had come second behind Krol, after crashing in Saturday's 500m. This time he beat his teammate in the final pairing: 1:07.35 versus 1:07.58. Hein Otterspeer (1:08,37) and Dai Dai N'tab (1:08,43) finished fourth and fifth.

"To be honest, I did not see this personal best at Thialf coming", Verbij said after his race. "I am really happy to skate another good 1,000-meter race. Thomas has been the guy to beat this year, so I am happy I was able to do it today. He still skated a very fast time, but this time I was just a little bit better."

"I am gutted", Krol said. "It was a good battle and today he beat me fair and square, I have to be honest. Hats off to Kai. I skated a good race, and that is what hurts the most: to skate a good race and still get beaten. I hope to be at my best at the World Single Distance Championships. That is all that matters."

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Otterspeer and De Jong seize silver on final day

Team Jumbo-Visma speed skaters Otterspeer and De Jong seized silver at the third and final day of the second World Cup at Thialf, Heerenveen. The Dutch sprint champion finished second in the men's second 500-meter race with a personal best at Thialf: 34.59 (was 34.65), finishing just behind winner Ronald Mulder (34.55). N'tab, who won a bronze medal in the first 500-meter race on Saturday, finished sixth in 34.68.

"It is anyone's game really", Otterspeer said. "But it is good to be on the international podium again, because I have been so close already. My speed is good, but I made little mistakes in my previous races, so when my opener is good and I add a smooth full-lap, I know I can skate 34.5. That's what I did today."

After finishing second in the ladies' 1,500-meter race on Saturday, De Jong managed to win another silver medal on Sunday. In the ladies' 3,000-meter race, she finished behind Natalia Voronina: 3:58.90. The Russian speed skater beat the track record, set by Irene Schouten last week (3:57.15), to take gold: 3:56.85. Team Jumbo-Visma speed skater Joy Beune ended up in fifth place (4:00.75) after winning bronze last week.

"The level and the depth in the field is superb. If you compare my race to competitions in Heerenveen over the past years, you'd always win with 3:59. Ireen (Wüst) skated 3:58 twice, but that is a long time ago. Maybe I broke that barrier skating 3:57 a month ago. After that you had Irene Schouten, and now a 3:56. The competition is merciless. It is a beautiful rivalry."

"I am in the middle of a training period now, and I know that I cannot expect too much. Jac (Orie) was very proud of me today. I am at 75-80 percent now and I hope to be able to lift it to a hundred in two weeks' time", De Jong said.

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Medals Team Jumbo-Visma (World Cup 2)

9 individual medals:
3x gold:
Kai Verbij: 1,000m
Thomas Krol: 1,500m
Patrick Roest: 5,000m

4x silver:
Hein Otterspeer: 500m (2)
Krol: 1,000m
Antoinette de Jong: 1,500m, 3,000m

2x bronze:
Dai Dai N'tab: 500m (1)
Roest: 1,500m

Team Pursuit:
1x silver:
De Jong (with Ireen Wüst and Irene Schouten)

Pictures: Stephan Tellier

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