NewsKristen Santos-GriswoldCorinne Stoddard

Santos-Griswold Wins Pair Golds, Plus Overall Silver, In Dramatic World Cup Final

by Paul D. Bowker

Kristen Santos-Griswold and Corinne Stoddard finished first and third in both the Women’s 1500m and 1000m, and they also combined with Julie Letai and Una Willhoite to capture a Bronze medal in the Women’s 3000m Relay, as the Short Track World Cup season came to its conclusion this weekend in Gdansk, Poland.

Santos-Griswold took one last charge at the World Cup Overall Title, setting up a showdown on the final day for the title. She ultimately fell just 31 points shy of Crystal Globe winner Kim Gilli of South Korea after scoring more than double the points that Kim did in Gdansk.

Santos-Griswold defeated Kim in Sunday’s 1000m final, finishing off a World Cup season in which she captured 11 individual medals and seven relay medals. She won the World Cup 1000m title and finished third in the 1500m standings.

With her win in the 1500m, Santos-Griswold became the first female U.S. short track speed skater to win in all three distances in a World Cup circuit, the only other U.S. skater who accomplished this being Apolo Ohno.

I was really excited that I had a Gold in every distance, which was my ultimate goal. This sets me up with more confidence for World Championships.” Santos-Griswold said. “It’s my best season so far in skating so I’m very excited about it. This season I had a much different mindset, which helped me a bit.”

Santos-Griswold and Stoddard locked in for strong runs in the 1000m and 1500m. Santos-Griswold, who won two races for the second time this season in World Cup competition, won both races with times of 1:32.944 and 2:22.820, respectively.

Santos-Griswold blasted through the final two laps of the 1500m, defeating Olympic Gold medalist Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands by nearly a full second. The two embraced following the race.

Stoddard, who captured two individual Bronze medals at a World Cup event for the first time, finished just .038 seconds behind Schulting in the 1500m and .141 seconds behind Kim in the 1000m. Her Bronze in the 1500m was hard one, after she got caught in the back during the race and made her move in the last three laps.

I wasn’t planning on being in the back, but a lot happened during the race that placed me back there.” Stoddard said. “In the last three laps I realized I still had a lot more speed than the people that were in front of me. So, I just started passing as many people as I could. But I was really happy with still being able to get Bronze with being in the back with three laps to go.”


Stoddard’s breakout season included six individual medals, seven relay medals and a fifth-place finish in the overall World Cup standings. The U.S. was the only country with two skaters in the top five. Stoddard also ranked third in the 1000m standings.

I feel good about the season that I had. I improved a lot from last year and I actually surprised myself with how many times I got medals or was almost in medal position.” Stoddard said. “I’m just training hard for the next two weeks and doing the same stuff I’ve been doing for World Championships.

Stoddard, Santos-Griswold, Letai and Willhoite finished third in the Women’s Relay with a time of 4:24.213, trailing World Cup season Champion Netherlands and South Korea. The U.S. finished fourth in the season standings. The competition marked the World Cup medal debut for Willhoite.

Letai made the B Final in both 500m races, finishing seventh and eighth, while Andrew Heo made the B Final in both Men’s 500m races, finishing eighth both times.

Letai, Stoddard, Wesley Park and Daniel Yoon teamed up in the Mixed Relay and took third in the B Final for seventh overall.

The U.S. now goes into preparation for the ISU World Short Track Speed Skating Championships, which will be held March 15-17 in Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Paul D. Bowker has been writing about Olympic and Paralympic sports since 1996, when he was an assistant bureau chief in Atlanta. He is a freelance contributor to on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.