Dresden Day 3: Russia and Canada in gold / Schulting still flawless on 1000m ~ Passion/Patin/Vitesse - Passion/Speed/Skating


4 février 2019

Dresden Day 3: Russia and Canada in gold / Schulting still flawless on 1000m

Yesterday was the last day of competition at EnergieVerbund Arena in Dresden, Germany and we were served our portion of action.

By Caroline Truchon
Photos by SchaatsFoto's

Valcepina in control on 500m
In the women's 500m, Martina Valcepina had a great start to take the lead and keep it until the end to win the gold medal. Lara van Ruijven from the Netherlands and Natalia Maliszewska from Poland followed in 2nd and 3rd place. The positions remained unchanged throughout the race. Only Kim Boutin and Elise Christie traded 4th and 5th place. Boutin started 5th on the starting line after being advanced to the main final by the referee following a fall in the semifinals. It's good to see Elise Christie back in the final legs of the World cup season, after good performances at the European championships.

In the men's 500m, we had a semifinal with six skaters, resulting in three falls and a penalty. Hwang Dae Heon of Korea and Ren Ziwei of China came out unscathed to qualify for the A final. It was Hwang who led the whole race in the final to finally be overtaken by his teammate Lim Hyo Jun at the finish line. Cédrik Blais of Canada took 3rd place with three laps to go and won the bronze medal, unable to find an opening to pass the two Korean leaders.

Schulting unbeatable on 1000m
In the women's 1000m, Saturday's winner Sofia Prosvirnova was unfortunately the victim of a fall in the quarterfinal yesterday. Cynthia Mascitto was impressive once again Sunday, passing both Chinese skaters Zhang Chutong and Zang Yize by the outside during the final lap of her quarterfinal. We must underline the performance of Kristen Santos from the USA who finished second in her quarterfinal behind Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands and ahead of Shim Suk Hee of Korea and Courtney Sarault of Canada, on her path to the A final. During the final, Suzanne Schulting took the lead with seven laps to go and kept it until the end to win the gold medal. Kim Ji Yoo of Korea and Zhang Chutong of China finished 2nd and 3rd, respectively. Schulting won every 1000m she participated in this season.

In the men's 1000m, the skaters were aggressive from the start, which caused the fall of Charles Hamelin after two laps. Shaolin Sandor Liu of Hungary took the lead, but almost fell with two laps to go, which sent him to 4th place. Park Ji Won of Korea then took the opportunity to pass from 4th place to 1st by passing Vladislav Bykanov of Israel and Sebastien Lepape from France, who finished 2nd and 3rd.

A lot of action in the relay events
In the mixed relay, we had a good fight between Korea and Russia until the finish line. The Koreans thought they had the win, but they were penalized for an action against the Russians at the end of the last corner. Hungary finished 2nd and Great Britain 3rd.

In the A final of the women's relay, the Dutch led a good part of the race. The Russians took the lead with six laps to go with a superb passing by Emina Malagich. The Dutch fell in the next lap and the Canadians were penalized on this action for pushing with the arm. The Koreans finally overtook Russia in the last corner to take the lead, but they were also penalized for "Blocking by infield skater" on Canada with 3 ½ laps to go. The Russians finished first followed by the Dutch. Only a gold and silver medal were awarded in this final.

In the B final, there was a lot of action! The French fell after only four laps to finally get back on with fifteen laps to go. With six laps to go, a fall by a Polish skater was caused by a French skater, who was penalized on the sequence based on the "Blocking by infield skater" rule. The Kazakh finished first followed by the Americans. Poland finished third.

In the men's relay, Canada controlled practically the entire race. They definitely had a different strategy than the other teams. With thirty-one laps to go, we were able to witness a shift in the exchanges. The Hungarians fell with sixteen laps to go. Later in the race, the Chinese tried to overtake the Canadians, without success, which led to a mess during the exchange in the next corner. China was penalized on this action for "Lane changes during exchange causing contact / obstruction". This allowed the Japanese to come back in the race and take second place behind Canada. Hungary finished third.

The B final was rather calm. Italy took the lead in the last corner over France to slip away with the win. France finished second, Kazakhstan third and the Netherlands fourth. All points are important with only one World cup to go in order to qualify their team for the World Championships.

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