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Heather Bergsma Goes 6-For-6, Winning At 4 Distances, At Long Track Speedskating World Cup Qualifiers

By Gary R. Blockus | Oct. 15, 2017, 6:52 p.m. (ET)

Heather Bergsma competes in the women's mass start at the Long Track World Cup Qualifiers on Oct. 15, 2017 in Kearns, Utah.


Four-time world champion Heather Bergsma continued to impress at US Speedskating’s 2017 Long Track World Cup Qualifiers at the Utah Olympic Oval in Kearns, Utah on Sunday, earning her fifth and sixth victories of the week by capturing the 1,000-meter, in which she set a world’s-best time for the season, and the mass start.

Mass start world champion Joey Mantia won his third and fourth races of the qualifiers, closing out the event with the men’s 1,000 and mass start victories.

Bergsma, a 2010 and 2014 Olympian, finished the 1,000 in 1:13.91, just three hundredths of a second ahead of 2014 Olympian and fellow four-time world champion Brittany Bowe’s 1:13.94, which marked Bowe’s fastest time since her world record 1:12.18 in November 2015. Sugar Todd, another 2014 Olympian, was third in 1:17.25.

Bergsma, 28, also won both her 500-meter races on Friday, the first mass start race on Wednesday, and the 1,500 on Saturday.

Mia Manganello who won the women’s 3,000 on Friday, was second to Bergsma in the mass start, followed by Corinne Stoddard.

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Mantia won Sunday’s mass start, which makes its Olympic debut in 2018, to go along with his win in the mass start #1 on Wednesday. Jeffrey Swider-Peltz finished second in the mass start, and Chase Reichmann third. Mantia added the men’s 1,000-meter title on Sunday, and won the 1,500 on Saturday.

Mantia captured the men’s 1,000 in the final heat of the event, going head-to-head with world-record holder Shani Davis, who ended up fourth. Mantia skated to a 1:08.00, beating fellow Olympians Jonathan Garcia (1:08.27) and Brian Hansen (1:08.86).

Skaters were vying for spots on the U.S. world cup team this fall, which will race in Heerenveen, Netherlands; Stavanger, Norway; Calgary; and Salt Lake City. Those stops will also determine the country quota spots for the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018.

Gary R. Blockus is a journalist from Allentown, Pennsylvania who has covered multiple Olympic Games. He is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.

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