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Japan bags 3 women's gold out of 4 on offer at ISU Speed Skating World Cup in Calgary

2020-02-09 05:41:32 GMT2020-02-09 13:41:32(Beijing Time) 

TORONTO, Feb. 8 (Xinhua) -- Japan flexed its muscles in the women's events at the two-day ISU Speed Skating World Cup with Kodaira Nao bagging her second gold in Calgary while Tagaki Miho triumphed in the 1,500m event in a track-record time on Saturday.

Kodaira, fresh from a 1,000m victory on Friday, was the fastest from the beginning to the end to claim the 500m win in 36.658 seconds pairing with Angelina Golikova of Russia, who was the runner-up 0.12 seconds behind the Japanese Olympic champion. Vanessa Herzog of Austria took home the bronze.

"It was a good race," Kodaira told ISU offical website. "Every stroke was good. Only the second corner was not exactly what it should have been, but I'm ready for next week [World Single Distance Championships]."

A familiar story happened in the 1,500m race as world record holder Tagaki was victorious, slicing 1.26 seconds off Brittany Bowe's track record to win the title while Ivanie Blondin skated to a personal best of 1:51.767 for silver. PyeongChang 2018 champion Ireen Wust of the Netherlands finished in third place.

"[Takagi] was outstanding today," the Dutch World Cup leader said. "She is the lady to beat and I'm really curious to see how she handles that pressure [at the World Championships]."

In the men's competitions, Pavel Kulizhnikov added another gold to Russia's two on Friday in the 1,000m race, beating Kjeld Nuis's track record with a time of 1:06.497. The Dutchman and previous record holder finished third in 1:07.019, only 0.002 second behind compatriot Thomas Krol.

China's Ning Zhongyan, who won a silver in the 1,500m on Friday, narrowly missed the podium by 0.03 seconds with a PB of 1:07.055.

The 5,000m event, Patrick Roest won the Netherlands' first gold in Calgary in 6:07.404, edging world record holder Ted-Jan Bloemen of Canada by 0.02 seconds. Another home hopeful Graeme Fish, paired with Roest, was third in 6:10.583.

The World Single Distance Championships will be held in Salt Lake City, United States from February 13 to 16.

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