Six-time overall European Champion Ariana Fontana is hotly tipped to be the overall star of the ISU European Short Track Speed Skating 2018 in Dresden, but the first medal of the weekend went to a teammate.
Martina Valcepina has impressed this season, taking bronze over 500m at the Audi ISU World Cup events in Dordrecht and Seoul, and she added to her reputation with a fine skate at the EnergieVerbund Arena on Saturday.
Fontana had been leading the race and looking comfortable, but a collision with Ekaterina Konstantinova (RUS) put the pair out of the race.
“I am so happy,” said Valcepina after the race. “This is my first win like this. I didn’t see the crash. I am very sorry for Ariana, because she was doing well, but I am so happy to do well.”
Sofia Prosvirnova (RUS) won the B Final.