Skater loses gold at world allround championships with stunning fall

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AMSTERDAM (AP) — In a stunning finish to the world allround speed skating championships, Dutchman Patrick Roest won the title Sunday after Sverre Lunde Pedersen of Norway fell in the closing 10,000m race as he was on track for a convincing overall victory.

Video is here.

Roest was some eight seconds behind Pedersen ahead of the 10,000m and, thanks to Pedersen’s fall around 6500m, finished the grueling finale more than 15 seconds faster than the Norwegian.

Pedersen picked himself up off the ice at the temporary, outdoor oval at Amsterdam’s 1928 Olympic Stadium and still managed to come back to beat nine-time allround champion Sven Kramer in their head-to-head battle to finish second overall.

But he lost so much time that a title that was his for the taking slipped through his fingers and went to Roest.

Afterward, Pedersen sat at the side of the oval with his head in his hands as Kramer gave him a consoling pat on the back.

“I am almost never falling,” Pedersen said. “I don’t know what to say.

“What can I say? It’s a pity for all of us that something like this happens. But that’s how it is.”

In a changing of the guard, Pedersen’s fall handed the allround title to Roest, Kramer’s 22-year-old teammate and training partner.

“I can’t believe it,” Roest said. “Of course it’s a shame that Sverre fell. You wouldn’t wish that on him. But it’s very cool to be world champion allround.”

Dutchman Marcel Bosker took third place in the overall standings. Kramer finished fourth after skating 14:05.70 in the 10,000m, his slowest time in that event by more than 20 seconds in more than a decade on the top senior international level.

“I did not feel well physically this weekend,” Kramer said, according to the International Skating Union.

Kramer was going for his record-extending 10th straight world allround title (not counting the editions he missed in 2011 and 2014).

On Saturday, Miho Takagi became the first Japanese woman to win a world allround title after beating defending champion Ireen Wust in a thrilling 1500m.

The 1500m win was partial revenge for Takagi, who was relegated to silver by Wust over the same distance at the Pyeongchang Olympics.

“I am very, very happy,” Takagi said. “I am proud.”

The world title capped a great season for Takagi, who won an Olympic gold medal in the team pursuit when Japan beat the Netherlands in the final.

“She has shown all season that she’s really good,” Wust said. “She has more speed than me.”

Wust won the closing 5000m to finish second overall, falling just short in her chase for a seventh allround title. Countrywoman Annouk van der Weijden ended third.

The championships are a test of skaters’ all-around prowess, with races over 500m, 1500m, 3000m and 5000m for women and 500m, 1500m, 5000m and 10,000m for men. They have been held officially since 1893.

They also were a test of how they coped with warm and rainy conditions that left puddles all over the oval at a championships being staged outdoors for the first time since 2001.

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Another Dutch speed skater won’t defend Olympic title

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The Netherlands won six of the 10 individual speed skating events in Sochi. Half of those gold medalists won’t defend their titles in PyeongChang.

Jorien ter Mors, who won the 1500m in Sochi and at the 2016 Worlds, was fifth in that event at the Dutch Olympic Trials on Friday.

Ter Mors, who doubles in short track, made the Olympic team earlier this week by winning the 1000m, but she won’t be skating the 1500m in February.

Ireen WuestLotte van Beek and Marrit Leenstra took the Olympic 1500m spots on Friday.

Wuest, van Beek and Leenstra finished second, third and fourth in the Sochi Olympic 1500m behind Ter Mors in an extraordinary display of Dutch skating dominance.

For PyeongChang, a nation can’t enter more than three skaters per individual event.

Other Dutch gold medalists from Sochi who won’t defend their Olympic titles are Stefan Groothuis, the 1000m champ who retired last year, and Michel Mulder, who was sixth in the 500m at trials.

The Dutch Olympic team should still be strong. It won eight of 14 events at last season’s world championships at the PyeongChang Olympic venue.

American Heather Bergsma edged Wuest in the 1500m at worlds by .11, but Japan’s Miho Takagi won all four World Cup 1500m races this fall.

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Dutch speed skater won’t defend Olympic title after trials miss

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Dutch speed skater Michel Mulder was best in the world at 500m in Sochi by one hundredth of a second. Four years later, he’s sixth-best in his own country.

That means Mulder won’t defend his Olympic title in PyeongChang.

The Netherlands’ Olympic Speed Skating Trials swallowed a Sochi medalist for the second time in as many days Wednesday.

Mulder joined Jorrit Bergsma, who missed the team in the 5000m on the opening day in Heerenveen on Tuesday. Bergsma took bronze in a Dutch 5000m sweep in Sochi but was fourth at trials.

Both could still make the team — Mulder in the 1000m and Bergsma in the 10,000m. Bergsma won the Sochi Olympic 10,000m but has struggled this season. As has Mulder.

Mulder, 31, led a Dutch 500m sweep in Sochi, edging Jan Smeekens by .01 with twin brother Ronald Mulder taking bronze.

Ronald Mulder won the trials 500m in 34.49, followed by world sprint champion Kai Verbij and Smeekens, the reigning world 500m champion.

Ronald Mulder, the current World Cup 500m leader, and Verbij are virtually guaranteed Olympic spots, while Smeekens will likely also get in.

Michel Mulder hasn’t made a World Cup podium in more than three years. In summer 2016, he ruptured an ankle ligament while attempting a high jump in a Dutch TV special ahead of the Rio Olympics.

Threats to another Dutch 500m sweep in PyeongChang are Russians Pavel Kulizhnikov and Ruslan Murashov, who own the two fastest 500m times ever.

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MORE: Broadcast schedule for all U.S. Olympic Trials