Kim Joon-Ho (KOR) powered to the first-ever men's gold medal at the ISU Four Continents Championships in a 500m track record at the Pettit National Ice Center in Milwaukee on Friday and went on to add a Team Sprint gold together with compatriots Cha Min Kyu and Kim Jin-Su. In the 5000m Vitaliy Schigolev and Dmitry Morozov handed Kazakhstan gold and silver ahead of local hero Emery Lehman (USA).
Kim Min Sun (KOR) was crowned the first ever Four Continents Champion, when she won the Ladies' 500m to kick off the inaugural ISU Four Continents Championships in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on Friday. Home favorite Mia Kilburg-Manganello (USA) had the Star Spangled Banner played in her honor for the first time in senior competition after winning the Ladies' 3000m and Canada’s ladies concluded the day by taking gold in the Team Sprint.
Milwaukee, Wisconsin USA, will host the inaugural ISU Four Continents Speed Skating Championships from January 31 to February 2. While the european speed skaters have had their annual continental championships since 1893, skaters from the other four continents have not had a similar opportunity to fight for a prize until this day. Canada, Japan, the Republic of Korea, China and the host nation mostly field their most talented youngsters in the new competition.
Speed Skating took place on the beautiful frozen Lake of St. Moritz. The scenery was breath-taking to say the least. At an altitude of 1’822m it represented nothing short of a challenge for the athletes.
Some extraordinary performances were witnessed at the ISU European Speed Skating Championships. Relive them here with the highlights.
Some extraordinary moments were captured at the ISU European Speed Skating Championships this weekend. Have a look at our selection of best pictures from the event.
Bart Swings (BEL) broke the mold in the final event of the ISU European Speed Skating Championships in Heerenveen. Before the men's Mass Start all 13 titles had gone to the Netherlands or Russia, but in the final event Swings won an historic first international speed skating title for Belgium. Earlier on Sunday, the Netherlands had taken Team Pursuit gold and Pavel Kulizhnikov (RUS) had retained his European 1000m title with a spectacular track record.
The Dutch ladies recorded a clean sweep of gold medals at the ISU European Championships in Heerenveen on Sunday. Antoinette de Jong, Ireen Wüst and Melissa Wijfje started the final day retaining the Team Pursuit title for the Netherlands. Jutta Leerdam added the 1000m gold with her first major international title, and Irene Schouten wrapped up the day seizing mass start gold, with Wijfje bringing home the bronze in the same event to put a cherry on top of the orange cake.
Pavel Kulizhnikov (RUS) and Patrick Roest (NED) both lived up to expectations, winning the 500m and the 5000m events on the second day of the ISU European Speed Skating Championships on Saturday. All six medals in the men's competition went to Russia and the Netherlands, with the visitors taking one gold and two bronze and the home squad one gold and two silvers.
Olga Fatkulina (RUS) won her first major individual international title since picking up 500m gold at the 2013 World Championships on the second day of the ISU European Speed Skating Championships in Heerenveen. The 29-year-old Russian beat defending champion Vanessa Herzog (AUT) in the Ladies' 500m. Esmee Visser (NED) successfully defended her title in the 3000m.
Thomas Krol (NED) completed his 1500m sweep on the opening day of the ISU European Speed Skating Championships in Heervereen (NED), adding the European title to the national and World titles he already had under his belt. Russia won the men's team pursuit with bronze medallists Switzerland writing speed skating history by seizing the first medal for their country at any European speed skating championships.
Ireen Wüst (NED) added a title she did not have yet to her impressive list of honour at the opening event of the ISU European Speed Skating Championships on Friday in Heervereen (NED). The reigning Olympic Champion left Russians Yevgenia Lalenkova and Yekaterina Shikhova behind to win the ladies' 1500m. Angelina Golikova, Olga Fatkulina and Daria Kachanova (RUS) made amends for their compatriots, winning the ladies Team Sprint.
After having been home to the ISU European Allround Speed Skating Championships fifteen times in history, Heerenveen (NED) will host the ISU European Speed Skating Championships in single distances format for the first time this weekend. A total of fourteen titles will be up for grabs in three days of exciting competition in the Dutch Speed Skating Mekka.
Junior medals are no guarantee for future success in Speed Skating, but some of the previous Youth Olympic Champions went on to win major titles in the senior category as well. Min-Seok Kim (KOR) is the only Speed Skater to this date to have won both Youth Olympic and senior Olympic silverware since the inaugural Winter Youth Olympic Games in 2012.