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Dutch skater Kjeld Nuis sets Olympic record to win gold in men's 1500m

Dutch skater Kjeld Nuis sets Olympic record to win gold in men's 1500m
Posted at 3:57 AM, Feb 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-08 10:38:20-05

Dutch skater Kjeld Nuis set the Olympic record and won the gold medal in the men's 1500m speed skating event on Tuesday.

Thomas Krol, also of the Netherlands, earned the silver medal in his Olympic debut. South Korea's Kim Min-Seok took third place to grab the bronze medal for the second straight Winter Olympics. 

Krol set the Olympic record in the 10th pairing at 1:43.55, but his teammate eclipsed him with a time of 1:43.21 in the 11th pairing. Krol had a better pace through the first 1100m of the race, but Nuis' final lap was 0.42 seconds faster. 

"For three minutes I really thought it would be enough," Krol said in a press conference. "I skated an Olympic record and that was confirmation that I skated a good race today."

Nuis now owns both the world and Olympic records in the men's 1500m. Derek Parra of the United States held the Olympic mark for 20 years after winning gold in 2002.

Kjeld Nuis Netherlands speed skater
Speed skater Kjeld Nuis of the Netherlands set an Olympic record in the men's 1500m to win the gold medal at the 2022 Winter Olympic Games.
(Imagn)

For the second Winter Olympics in a row, two Dutch skaters captured the gold and silver medals in the men's 1500m. Nuis also won the event in 2018, and the 32-year-old is now a three-time Olympic gold medalist. 

“My path since the last Olympics was pretty solid," Nuis said in a press conference. "A lot of World Cup wins, two world titles. I have come far but it was the European (Championships) that gave me confidence.”

Three Dutch athletes have won gold in the first four speed skating events. Irene Schouten and Ireen Wuest were victors in the women's 5000m and 1500m, respectively. 

SEE MORE: Irene Schouten wins speed skating gold in women's 3000m

Joey Mantia of the United States finished in sixth place with a time of 1:45.26. His first 300m was 0.07 seconds behind Nuis' pace, but he suffered a major drop-off during his first full 400m lap. 

"I haven't really felt surefooted on my skates in a while," Mantia said. "I didn't feel comfortable in the race. Even if I'd had a perfect race I don't know if I would have gone as fast as (Nuis) ... It is what it is, but I'm pretty devastated."

His American teammate, Emery Lehmannearly reached a top-10 result. The 25-year-old finished in 11th at 1:45.78.

Utah native Casey Dawson arrived at the Olympics on Monday after clearing COVID-19 protocols. He raced in the seventh pairing and finished in 28th place of 29 skaters. Still, to fly from Salt Lake City to Beijing and compete on the world's biggest stage less than 24 hours later is an accomplishment in of itself. 

"That was quite the journey to get her in the first place," Dawson said in a press conference. "Not my best race, but I couldn't be happier to be skating in the Olympics."

Dawson competed with Latvian skater Haralds Silovs' blades because his bags were lost in transit. 

SEE MORE: Ireen Wuest sets Olympic record to win sixth-career gold

What's next?

There is no speed skating event on Wednesday, but the action returns Thursday with the Women's 5000m. That is the longest women's race of the Olympics. 

The event begins at 7 a.m. ET. See NBCOlympics.com for the full schedule. 

Editor's note: Re-live the event as it unfolded in real time with our live blog updates below.

Event live blog

Final results

15th pairing: Canada's Connor Howe finishes in fifth place, so Nuis wins his second straight gold medal in the men's 1500m. 

13th pairing: American Joey Mantia finished with a 1:45.26. That is fifth thus far, so the American will not end the now-three-Olympic podium drought in this distance. 

11th pairingKjeld Nuis, the defending Olympic gold medalist, sets the Olympic record at 1:43.21. Krol's reign lasted all but five minutes. The two Dutch skaters are in prime position to stand atop the podium. Nuis was behind Krol's pace through the first 1100m, but he had a strong finish. His last lap was 28.44. 

10th pairing: Dutch skater Thomas Krol blows away the rest of the field. The reigning world champion in the 1500m sets the Olympic record at 1:43.55, beating American Derek Parra's mark. This is the 29-year-old's first Olympic games. 

Ninth pairing: Lehman starts from the inside and hits 1:45.78. That is the third-fastest time of the day. He finished behind the ROC's Sergey Trofimov, who hit the fastest time through nine pairs at 1:45.32. The two pushed each other in the most exciting race thus far. 

American Emery Lehman is set to perform out of the break. He finished second in the 1500m at U.S. Olympic Trials behind Mantia.

After eight pairings, Bosker leads for the Netherlands. There will be a short break to work on the ice. The event format is set for the top seeds to skate last, and there are many contenders in the final 14 athletes. 

Seventh pairing: Casey Dawson is the first American to skate. He arrived in Beijing on Monday after clearing COVID-19 protocols. In his Olympic debut, the 21-year-old skated a 1:49.45, which is 13th out of 13 skaters so far. Dawson missed his 5000m individual race last week. He will get back on the ice in the team pursuit for the U.S. 

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Bosker remains in the lead after six pairs. He has the only sub-28-second final lap in the event so far. 

Fourth pairingMarcel Bosker, the first Dutch skater to race in this event, takes first at 1:45.42. 

Third pairing: Ruslan Zakharov of the ROC grabs the top spot with a time of 1:46.46. 

Second pairing: Canada's Antoine Gelinas-Beaulieu grabs the top spot with a 1:48.00 race. 

First athlete: Peter Michael of New Zealand, the only athlete skating by himself, set the time to beat at 1:48.68. 

Mantia will skate in the 13th pairing.

Defending Olympic gold medalist Kjeld Nuis of the Netherlands is in the 11th pairing.