After a bronze medal in Friday’s 1000m and a silver in Saturday’s 500m, Nao Kodaira (JPN) completed the medal set with gold in Sunday’s 500m at the ISU World Cup Speed Skating in Stavanger, Norway. Coming second after three victories, Erin Jackson (USA) retained the lead in the 500m World Cup classification. Miho Takagi (JPN) strengthened her lead in the 1500m World Cup with a back-to-back win following her success in Poland last week.
Gold medalist Nao Kodaira (JPN) © International Skating Union (ISU)
Opener makes the difference
Kodaira had already predicted her 500m victory after Saturday’s silver medal. The Olympic Champion skated 0.08s faster than she did the day before, stopping the clock at 37.52 seconds.
“Today my opener was better, that’s the reason I won,” Kodaira analyzed after her race. She skated the first 100m on Saturday in 10.54s, compared with 10.42s on Sunday.
While Kodaira enjoyed a better opener, Jackson struggled with her start in her two 500m races in Stavanger, whereas she had been fast with 10.3 openers in Poland.
“I've been struggling with my starts all season,” the US sprinter said. “In Poland, I was actually like, ‘Oh, this is really good’. But the start today is more like how it's been going.”
Jackson opened in 10.47s on Sunday, and finished in 37.67 to take silver.
Despite her shaky starts, Jackson was satisfied reflecting on the first two ISU World Cup Speed Skating weekends and looked forward to getting back home to gear up for the next World Cup in Salt Lake City, December 3-5.
“I feel like I'm in a good spot, setting up for the season,” she said.
“(At home I’ll be) recharging and getting ready to have some good races on home ice. Probably hanging out with my pets and my dad. (I’ve got) two cats and a dog.
Angelina Golikova (RUS) finished third in 37.71s. She had struggled a bit with her inner-lane start.
“For ladies it’s better to start in the outer lane because you can control your opponent,” she said.
“When you start in the inner lane you must focus only on yourself. Today I did well but I think I lost some speed in the last 100m. I focused so much on the start and the change-up. That last 100m is the final step (to work on).”
Miho Takagi (JPN) © International Skating Union (ISU)
Takagi makes it three gold medals for Japan
In the Women’s 1500m, Miho Takagi (JPN) wrapped up the World Cup weekend in the Sørmarka Arena by taking Japan’s third gold medal of the day. Before Kodaira won the Women’s 500m, Tatsuya Shinhama (JPN) had already seized gold in the Men’s 500m.
Ayano Sato (JPN) completed the Japanese party, taking her career-first World Cup medal in a classic distance with bronze in the Women’s 1500m.
Takagi skated a well-paced 1500m, stopping the clock at 1 minute, 55.67 seconds. Following her victory, the 27-year-old was satisfied but very tired.
“Today, it was so hard because I did already two races on Friday.” Apart from finishing second in the 1000m, the 2018 World Allround Champion had also come fourth in Friday’s B Division 5000m.
Takagi’s ability to excel in so many different distances might leave some wondering what her target will be for the 2022 Olympic Games in Beijing.
“That’s a difficult question,” Takagi said. “(To skate) the long distances is also good for the other distances. I don’t target medals in the 5000m, but I also want to do Allround Championships.”
Ireen Wust (NED) © International Skating Union (ISU)
Ireen Wüst (NED) finished the 1500m in second place, in 1:56.25, struggling to maintain pace in the final lap.
“I’m satisfied,” the Olympic Champion said. “But that final lap is a bit of a bummer. I was on course pretty well but then I just got up a little too much.
“Usually (the final lap) is one of my strengths. Today I just had trouble making pace and then it’s hard to stay low in that final lap.
“At first I was a little disappointed because I think a win would have been possible today, but I’m happy with silver. Miho (Takagi) is strong, last week already. She makes pace a little easier and that leaves her with a bit more left in the tank for the final lap.
“I’m still searching for that easy pace, but there’s an upward trend and I’m looking forward to Salt Lake City in two weeks.
“After Salt Lake City I’ll head for the sun in the south of Spain (for a training camp). That’s what I’ve always done, especially in an Olympic season, so why change?”
Team Sprint Women
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings Team Sprint Women
Team Sprint Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings Team Sprint Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 3000m Women
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 5000m Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 500m Women
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 1000m Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 1500m Women
Mass Start Final Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings Mass Start Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 500m Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 1000m Women
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 1500m Men
Mass Start Women
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings Mass Start Women
The event entry quotas for the individual distances will be determined by the Special Olympic Qualification Classification (SOQC) based on results from the different ISU World Cup Speed Skating Competitions and the full details are available in ISU Communication 2405.
For full entry lists and further information regarding the ISU World Cup Speed Skating Series please visit: isu.org/speed-skating. Results are here and you can follow the discussion on social media by using #SpeedSkating.
Where to Watch
Viewers will be able to watch either via their national broadcaster / channel and for countries where there are no broadcasters, the ISU will offer a live stream on the Skating ISU YouTube Channel. You will find the full list in the Where to Watch news here.
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Highlights, clips, interviews, behind the scenes:
YouTube: ISU Skating
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For further information on ISU Speed Skating visit https://www.isu.org/speed-skating
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Series 2021/22:
About ISU World Cup Speed Skating Series
The ISU World Cup Speed Skating is a Series of international Speed Skating competitions which takes place annually. The Series started in 1984 and usually consists of six or seven Events including the ISU World Cup Speed Skating Final. However during the Olympic season the Series consists of five Events.
Skaters can earn points at each competition, and the Skater who has the most points on a given distance at the end of the Series is the World Cup winner of that distance. The World Cup Competitions held from November to December serve as qualifying events for entry quotas at the ISU European, World Single Distances, World Sprint and World Allround Speed Skating Championships and during the Olympic season they are Olympic Qualifying Events. A number of World Cup titles are awarded every season; For Men: 500m, 1000m, 1500m, combined 5000m / 10,000m, Mass Start, Team Pursuit and Team Sprint. For Women 500m, 1000m, 1500m, the combined 3000m / 5000m, Mass Start, Team Pursuit and Team Sprint. For further information please visit isu.org/WorldCupSpeedSkating.