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Speed Skating at the 2006 Torino Winter Games:

Women's 500 metres

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Events:
Phases:

Host City: Torino, Italy
Venue(s): Lingotto Oval, Torino
Date Started: February 14, 2006
Date Finished: February 14, 2006
Format: Two runs, total time determined placement.

Gold: RUS Svetlana Boyarkina-Zhurova
Silver: CHN Wang Manli
Bronze: CHN Ren Hui

Summary

The top contenders for the women’s sprint were Wang Manli and Svetlana Boyarkina-Zhurova. At the past editions of the World Championships, Wang had placed 2nd (2003), and 1st (2004, 2005), and she had won four World Cup races in the Olympic season. By contrast, Zhurova’s best years had been long before, winning the 500 m world title back in 1996 (and placing second in 1999). However, she had made a strong comeback in the 2005/2006 season, winning her first World Cup races in years, and unexpectedly winning the 2006 World Sprint Championships ahead of Wang. Other medal contenders were 16-year-old Lee Sang-Hwa of South Korea, and Jenny Wolf of Germany.

Known for her fast openers, Wolf started against Zhurova in the first heat, with the fastest 100 m of the pack (10.39), but Zhurova’s lap was much stronger, to finish in 38.23. Her time remained unmatched in the remaining pairs, with Wang coming closest at 38.31. Next were Tomomi Okazaki, the 1998 bronze medalist from Japan, and Ren Hui (China), who had been in silver medal position at the 2005 Worlds, before falling in the second run. In 6th and 7th, Wolf and Lee appeared out of contention already.

The final pairs of the second run started with Ren against Wolf. With a sound lap, the Chinese neared the time of Zhurova from the first run, with 38.27. This left Okazaki with a hard target for the bronze medal, and she just failed to get it, missing out by 0.05 seconds. The final pair was between the two leaders, Wang and Zhurova. Nearly equal at the bell, Zhurova edged away in the final straight to 38.34. That time was not enough to win the second heat, but good enough for a long awaited gold medal, ahead of the two Chinese sprinters, Wang and Ren.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal T
1 Svetlana Boyarkina-Zhurova 34 Russia RUS Gold 76.57
2 Wang Manli 32 China CHN Silver 76.78
3 Ren Hui 22 China CHN Bronze 76.87
4 Tomomi Okazaki 34 Japan JPN 76.92
5 Lee Sang-Hwa 16 South Korea KOR 77.04
6 Jenny Wolf 27 Germany GER 77.25
7 Wang Beixing 20 China CHN 77.27
8 Sayuri Osuga 25 Japan JPN 77.39
9 Sayuri Yoshii 21 Japan JPN 77.43
10 Chiara Simionato 30 Italy ITA 77.68
11 Jennifer Rodriguez 29 United States USA 77.70
12 Annette Gerritsen 20 Netherlands NED 78.09
13 Xing Aihua 28 China CHN 78.35
14 Sanne van der Star 19 Netherlands NED 78.59
15 Yukari Watanabe 24 Japan JPN 78.65
16 Shannon Rempel 21 Canada CAN 78.85
17 Amy Sannes 29 United States USA 78.89
18 Choi Seung-Yong 26 South Korea KOR 79.02
19 Judith Hesse 23 Germany GER 79.03
20 Kim Yu-Rim 16 South Korea KOR 79.25
21 Kerry Simpson 24 Canada CAN 79.34
22 Krisy Myers 27 Canada CAN 79.43
23 Elli Ochowicz 22 United States USA 79.48
24 Pamela Zoellner 29 Germany GER 79.56
25 Lee Bo-Ra 19 South Korea KOR 79.73
26 Kim Weger 25 Canada CAN 79.99
27 Svetlana Radkevich 26 Belarus BLR 80.36
28 Chris Witty 30 United States USA 80.69
29 Yuliya Nemaya 28 Russia RUS 112.39
AC Marianne Timmer 31 Netherlands NED DQ