Brittany Bowe skates to an overall Bronze medal at the World Sprint Championships

Feb. 24, 2019, 12:01 p.m. (ET)

Brittany Bowe (Ocala, Fla.) got some speed skating hardware for her birthday as the 2019 World Sprint Championships concluded in Heerenveen, Netherlands. The two-time Olympian turned 31 on Sunday, as she finished third place overall at the event.

For the Sprint Championships, all athletes skated two 500m races and two 1000m races. The times for those distances are converted to points using the samalog system, and the skater with the lowest total from all four races wins the championship.

In Saturday’s races, Bowe won gold in the first 1000m with a time of 1:14.60. She holds the track record in the 1000m at the Thialf Ice Arena (1:13.24) where earlier in the day she finished fifth in her first 500m event (37.89).  

Bowe’s second day of races got her two silver medals; 500m (37.67) and 1000m (1:14.64). Her total time for all events (150.18) earned her a third place medal for the overall event.  

"Having the opportunity to race in front of a sold-out crowd in Thialf was incredible," Bowe said. "After a scary crash on the bike last weekend, I'm grateful I even got to hear the gun go off and race. I'm extremely proud of winning a bronze medal and sharing the podium with two of the best ladies in the world."

Kimi Goetz (Flemington, N.J.) made her debut appearance at the sprint championships, after switching from short track skating last fall. Her first 500m landed her in 15th (38.49) and in her first 1000m, she finished in 19th (1:17.14). During the second day of racing, Kimi finished 16th in her 500m (38.81) and 16th in her 1000m (1:16.85) to come in 17th overall (154.295).

“I think that each time I go to the starting line, I’m improving my race execution and track patterns,” Goetz said. “I still have a ton to learn but getting four more races at this level is a great opportunity for me. I have two more competitions left for the season [World Cup Finals mass start and the Calgary Finale], so I’m trying to take advantage of every race opportunity I have.”

This was also the first sprint championships for Brianna Bocox (Cheyenne, Wyo.). Bocox’s first 500m time was 39.47 and she finished her 1000m with a time of 1:18.37. In her second 500m, she crossed the line at 39.67 and the 1000m at 1:19.24. Her combined time of 157.945 earned her 22nd overall.

“It was an extremely amazing opportunity to compete at my first World Sprint Championships in Thialf,” Bocox said. “The crowd and venue is one of a kind!

For the ladies, Japanese skaters Nao Kodaira and Miho Takagi took the overall first and second spots with a combined time of 149.665 and 150.050 respectively. Kodaira is the current world record holder in the 1000m (1:12.09)

Two-time Olympian Joey Mantia (Ocala, Fla.), raced the first day of the championship event but decided not to compete the second day due to an ongoing back problem.

“I’ve had some issues with my back this season, on and off, starting in September,” Mantia said. “After getting on the ice for warm-up today, I wasn’t confident that I could race today and not make it worse. So I decided to rest and hopefully be ready for the world cup final in a couple of weeks.”

Pavel Kulizhnikov (RUS) won the overall Men’s title (137.390), followed by Japan’s Tatsuya Shinhama (137.805) and Dutch skater Kjeld Nuis (1:37.86).

Both Mantia and Bowe won World Single Distance Championships Titles two weeks ago in Inzell, Germany. Mantia is the world champion for the Mass Start and Bowe is the 1000m world champion.

Long Track skaters will race in the World Cup Finals at the Utah Olympic Oval, Mar. 9-10. Bowe has won 12 world cup medals and Mantia has won a silver world cup medal this season.

Complete Results 

Additional Quotes:

"International competition is tough," said Brianna Bocox. "As an athlete, you need to make sure you're at the top of your game at all times, especially being away from home for weeks on end. My experience here was both exciting and humbling. I know that I have work to do. I learned a ton this weekend, mentally and physically. I'm ready to come home and I'm hungry to continue growing as an athlete."

"This has been an excellent season for Brittany, even with the World Cup Final still to come in two weeks," said US Speedskating Head Coach Ryan Shimabukuro. "We hit our targets and overcame some serious obstacles this week to win the overall bronze medal. it's been a grueling trip and I'm very proud of all of our skaters."


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