Heerenveen day 1: mass start semi-finals ~ Passion/Patin/Vitesse - Passion/Speed/Skating


14 décembre 2018

Heerenveen day 1: mass start semi-finals

The fourth World cup of the season in long track speed skating started with the mass start semifinals today in Heerenveen, Netherlands.

By Jackob Savard
Photo: Jaap Hop (JH Sportfotografie)

Only the individual distances will be raced this weekend in Heerenveen for World cup #4 of the season. On day 1, mass start semifinals were the only races on the program.

Schouten and Blondin will enter the final as favorites
Crowd favorite and olympic medalist on the distance Irene Schouten won the first ladies’ semifinal sending a message to her rivals that she is the women to beat in Heerenveen. As for other skaters who qualified through the first heat, we found current World cup leader on the distance Bo Reum Kim and Pyeongchang 2018 4th place finisher in the mass start Saskia Alusalu from Estonia.

Former mass start world champion from Canada Ivanie Blondin won the second semifinal finishing just ahead of Olympic champion Nana Takagi from Japan and current World cup runner-up Francesca Lollobrigida from Italia.

Peter Michael dominates his heat
New Zealand’s long distance skater Peter Michael dominated the first semifinal finishing seven seconds before his closest rival and mass start winner in Obihiro, Andrea Giovannini. Mass start classification leader Cheonho Um, former world champion Joey Mantia and Dutch favorite Simon Schouten also got through this first semifinal. It was a tougher race for Olivier Jean from Canada who finished 10th.

Seventeen-year-old Korean skater Jaewon Chung won the second semifinal in front of Bart Swings and Daniel Niero. Niero who is an inline speed skating champion and an ice marathon skater will skate his first mass start A final in a World cup tomorrow. Chris Huizinga, Jordan Belchos, Ryosuke Tsuchiya, Zbigniew Bródka and Livio Wenger are the other skaters who qualified.

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