Following the European legs of the 2021/22 ISU World Cup Speed Skating season in Tomaszów Mazowiecki (POL) and Stavanger (NOR), the series moves to the fast North American high-altitude ice at the Utah and Calgary Olympic Ovals. US skater Joey Mantia is relishing the prospect of this weekend’s third leg in Salt Lake City. “That's where I really want to shine,” he said after taking 1500m silver in Stavanger.
Joey Mantia of the USA © International Skating Union (ISU)
Busy schedule for Mantia
Currently lying third in the 1500m World Cup ranking, Mantia has displayed excellent early-season form despite a big training block between the first two World Cups.
“I took the week really hard for training and took the opportunity, as I was only skating the 1500m this weekend, to train really hard on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday,” he said after the second World Cup.
Mantia spoke of his plan to lower the intensity of his training ahead of the World Cup on home ice in Utah, where he must manage a busy schedule which includes his participation in the 1500m, the Mass Start semi-finals and final on a single day.
“It's a lot of skating for me in Salt Lake. I have two Mass Starts, the 1500m and the Team Pursuit, so that's a lot of racing. We'll see how it goes,” he said.
In Poland, Mantia had been struggling with his corners in the Mass Start, when his boot touched the ice at high speeds. In the run-up to the Salt Lake City World Cup, he’s expected to experiment with adjusting the rocker of his blade.
“I feel like I'm probably more fit than I've ever been. At this point, it's just tidying up a couple technical things, and that's the difference between winning or not winning,” he said.
Short- and long-distance battles
The Men’s 500m promises to be at least as exciting as the 1500m and the Mass Start. Laurent Dubreuil (CAN) leads the ranking, closely followed by Japan’s Tatsuya Shinhama, who sits only two points behind.
The long-distance World Cup is not as close as the 500m, but no less thrilling. Nils van der Poel (SWE) leads after winning the 5000m in Poland and the 10,000m in Stavanger.
Ted-Jan Bloemen (CAN) described that performance in Norway by Van der Poel as “one of the best I’ve ever seen” but believes he can beat his Swedish rival, especially on fast ice such as that in Salt Lake City and Calgary.
“I think he’s right,” Van der Poel said. “My strength as a speed skater is good corners, and I'm physically fit.
“The straightaways, when the ice is good… (Dutch opponent Jorrit) Bergsma, for example, he does really good straightaways. I think he benefits from the better glide. The Canadians benefit from the better glide (too). They always train under better conditions.”
Mantia’s fellow Floridians raring to go in Women’s field
Jackson kicked of the series with her maiden World Cup podium, winning the first 500m of the season in Poland. She went on to win the next two 500m races too. Nao Kodaira (JPN) won the fourth 500m race and sits 18 points behind Jackson in the World Cup ranking.
Irene Schouten (NED) © International Skating Union (ISU)
Irene Schouten (NED) leads both the long distance and the Mass Start World Cup rankings. The indomitable Dutch endurance specialist is the only racer in the Women’s field able to skate a negative split in the 5000m, increasing pace and reducing her lap times towards the end of the race.
Schouten’s only weak point in the classic distances is her second full lap, in which she has difficulties reaching top speed. On the fast Salt Lake City ice, some of Schouten’s rivals may be able to take advantage. When they pick up pace earlier, it’s easier to keep gliding on a fast high-altitude track than it was in sea-level Tomaszów Mazowiecki and Stavanger.
The Salt Lake City World Cup features a full program, including a Men’s and Women’s 500m, a Women’s 3000m, and a Men’s 5000m on Friday. The second 500m for Women will be on Saturday, followed by the Men’s 1500m, the Women’s 1000m, the Men’s Mass Start and the Women’s Team Pursuit. Sunday’s program is similar to Saturday’s, with the Men skating the events the Women raced on Saturday, and vice versa.
World Cup 3 starts tomorrow! Make sure to check the time schedules so you won't miss a thing from Salt Lake City 🇺🇸— ISU Speed Skating (@ISU_Speed) December 2, 2021
Find out where to watch 📺 ➡ https://t.co/gxd7abIQ39#SpeedSkating pic.twitter.com/11Ul7p4RXt
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 500m Women
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 1000m Women
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 1500m Women
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 3000m Women
Mass Start Women
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings Mass Start Women
Team Pursuit Women
ISU World Cup Team Pursuit Women Standings Team Pursuit Women
Team Sprint Women
ISU World Cup Team Sprint Women Standings Team Sprint Women
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 500m Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 1000m Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 1500m Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings 5000m Men
Mass Start Men
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Standings Mass Start Men
Team Pursuit Men
ISU World Cup Team Pursuit Women Standings Team Pursuit Men
Team Sprint Men
ISU World Cup Team Sprint Women Standings Team Sprint Men
The event entry quotas for the individual distances will be determined by the Special Olympic Qualification Classification (SOQC) based on results from the different ISU World Cup Speed Skating Competitions and the full details are available in ISU Communication 2405.
For full entry lists and further information regarding the ISU World Cup Speed Skating Series please visit: isu.org/speed-skating. Results are here and you can follow the discussion on social media by using #SpeedSkating.
Where to Watch
Viewers will be able to watch either via their national broadcaster / channel and for countries where there are no broadcasters, the ISU will offer a live stream on the Skating ISU YouTube Channel. You will find the full list in the Where to Watch news here.
Subscribe to the ISU Newsletter to receive the latest information and the “Where to Watch” news. You can also subscribe to the Skating ISU YouTube Channel to receive notifications when live streams start or new videos are published.
Highlights, clips, interviews, behind the scenes:
YouTube: ISU Skating
Follow the conversation with #SpeedSkating.
For further information on ISU Speed Skating visit https://www.isu.org/speed-skating
ISU World Cup Speed Skating Series 2021/22:
About ISU World Cup Speed Skating Series
The ISU World Cup Speed Skating is a Series of international Speed Skating competitions which takes place annually. The Series started in 1984 and usually consists of six or seven Events including the ISU World Cup Speed Skating Final. However during the Olympic season the Series consists of five Events.
Skaters can earn points at each competition, and the Skater who has the most points on a given distance at the end of the Series is the World Cup winner of that distance. The World Cup Competitions held from November to December serve as qualifying events for entry quotas at the ISU European, World Single Distances, World Sprint and World Allround Speed Skating Championships and during the Olympic season they are Olympic Qualifying Events. A number of World Cup titles are awarded every season; For Men: 500m, 1000m, 1500m, combined 5000m / 10,000m, Mass Start, Team Pursuit and Team Sprint. For Women 500m, 1000m, 1500m, the combined 3000m / 5000m, Mass Start, Team Pursuit and Team Sprint. For further information please visit isu.org/WorldCupSpeedSkating.