The Torch

U.S. Speed Skater Joey Mantia Sixth in 1500m as Netherlands' Kjeld Nuis Sets Olympic Record

Nuis topped the record set by the United States' Derek Parra in 2002

NBCUniversal Media, LLC

It was a disappointing finish for the United States in the 1500m men's speed skating event in more ways than one.

Joey Mantia, the world's top-ranked skater in the event and the United States' best chance at its first gold medal of the 2022 Winter Olympics, finished sixth with a time of 1:45.26 on Tuesday.



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An Olympic record held by the United States for 20 years was also broken not once but twice. The Netherlands' Kjeld Nuis won a second straight gold medal after finishing with a time of 1:43.21, breaking the record set just minutes prior by his teammate Thomas Krol. Krol clocked in at 1:43.55, which topped the previous record of 1:43.95 set by the United States' Derek Parra in 2002, to win silver.

That put pressure on gold-medal hopeful Mantia, who entered first in the 1500m World Cup standings and in January set a track record of 1:44.01 U.S. Olympic Speed Skating Trials.

The 36-year-old from Ocala, Fla., making his third Olympic appearance, was unable to keep pace with the record times set by the Netherlands, failing to reach the podium.

Kim Min-seok of South Korea took bronze for the second straight Games, finishing with a time of 1:44.24. Norway's Peder Kongshaug (1:44.39) and Canada's Connor Howe (1.44:86) also finished ahead of Mantia.

The sixth-place finish was Mantia's top Olympic result in the 1500m after coming in 22nd in the event at the 2014 Sochi Games and eighth at the 2018 PyeongChang Games.

Team USA's Emery Lehman, a 25-year-old making his third Olympic appearance, clocked in at 1:45.78 to finish 11th.

Casey Dawson, a 21-year-old who tested positive for COVID-19 about three weeks ago, wasn't cleared to begin traveling to Beijing until Sunday morning. He arrived in the Olympic village on Monday night, missing the 5000m event, and made his Olympic debut in the 1500m. He finished with a time of 1:49.45 to finish 28th in the field of 29 skaters.

The speed skating medal drought continued for the United States, which hasn't won an individual long track medal, men's or women's, since the 2010 Vancouver Games.

Kuis captured his third gold medal, becoming the first Olympian to win two straight in the men's 1500m since 1994.

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