U.S. Sprint Teams Capture A Pair Of World Cup Bronze Medals In Heerenveen
by Paul D. Bowker
McKenzie Browne, Erin Jackson and Kimi Goetz captured the first U.S. women’s medals of the season Saturday, finishing third behind the Netherlands and Canada in the Women’s Team Sprint. They posted a time of 1 minute, 27.72 seconds, trailing runner-up Canada by just .27 seconds. In doing so, they set a new American Record in the event by 2.75 seconds.
And on Sunday, the team of Austin Kleba, Cooper McLeod and Jordan Stolz finished third in the Men’s Team Sprint with a time of 1:19.90. The Americans edged Norway by .01 seconds for the final podium spot and finished .35 seconds behind winner China. The Netherlands was second.
The two podium finishes pushed the U.S. medal count to five after two World Cup stops. Stolz, a 2022 Olympian who last week became the youngest man to win an individual World Cup race, has won three medals in two weekends.
Although the U.S. won a pair of medals in the Team Sprints, the event is not on the Olympic program.
After winning Gold medals in the Men’s 1500m and 500m last week in Stavanger, Norway, Stolz nearly added another podium in the 500m in Heerenveen. He finished fourth, placing just .01 seconds behind Bronze medalist Merijn Scheperkamp of the Netherlands. Stolz finished ninth in the 1500m, less than a second behind winner Connor Howe of Canada, and was disqualified in the 1000m after crashing.
Jackson came close to capturing her first individual medal of the season in the Women’s 500m, the event she won at the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022. She finished fourth in 37.53 seconds, missing a podium by just .02 seconds while improving her placing by four spots from last week’s season opener and improving her time by nearly a second, "[I'm] making progress" remarked Jackson.
Goetz had a pair of top-10 finishes, placing seventh in the Women’s 1,000m with a time of 1:15.14 and eighth in the 500m in 37.84 seconds. She was 11th in the 1500m.
Mia Manganello-Kilburg, a two-time Olympian, was in contention for a podium finish in the Women’s Mass Start for the second consecutive week. She placed sixth with a time of 8:49.50. Manganello-Kilburg was fifth last week. She was also third in the 3000m B Final.
Ethan Cepuran, a 2022 Olympian, finished third in one of the Men’s Mass Start Semifinals and then was 12th in the Final. He finished second in the 5000m B Final.
McLeod had a second-place finish in the Men’s 1000m B Final.
The next event on the long-track calendar is the ISU Four Continents Speed Skating Championships, Dec. 2-4 in Quebec. The World Cup resumes Dec 9-11 in Calgary, Alberta.