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Speed Skating at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games:

Men's 500 metres

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Host City: Vancouver, Canada
Venue(s): Richmond Olympic Oval, Richmond
Date Started: February 15, 2010
Date Finished: February 15, 2010
Format: Two runs, total time determined placement.

Gold: KOR Mo Tae-Beom
Silver: JPN Keiichiro Nagashima
Bronze: JPN Joji Kato


Of all the speed skating events at the 2010 Games, this distance was the only one without a clear favorite. [Lee Gang-Seok], [Lee Gyu-Hyeok] (both South Korea), [Tucker Fredricks] (United States), [Keiichiro Nagashima], [Joji Kato] (both Japan) and [Mika Poutala] (Finland) had all won a World Cup race during the season, with Nagashima and Lee Gang-Seok also winning a 500 m at the World Sprint Championships. Then there was also the home-town favorite, [Jeremy Wotherspoon]. Long a dominant force in the 500 m, Wotherspoon had missed the 2008-09 season after breaking his arm in a fall. Lacking only an Olympic gold medal in his prize cabinet, Wotherspoon was hoping to fill that void in Vancouver.

The race had trouble getting underway. Halfway through the first run, the two ice resurfacing machines broke down. The spare machine then damaged the ice. Many coaches and team leaders then pressed for a postponement, but the referees eventually decided to continue the race under pressure from the ISU president, Ottavio Cinquanta. With one machine repaired, the event was continued after an hour and a half delay. It was Mika Poutala, known for his pre-start antics, who had clocked the best time, 34.863. He was closely trailed by the surprising [Mo Tae-Beom] of South Korea and Kato. But several others were not far off the medal pace, the with the entire top ten less than three tenths off the leader's pace.

But the positions would shift quite a bit in second race. Keiichiro Nagashima of Japan moved up from sixth to silver medal position with 34.876, the best time of the second run. He was then topped in overall time by Mo, who was marginally faster than his own first run. The last race was then between Kato and Poutala. The leading Finn seemingly succumbed to the pressure, and only recorded the 11th best time and dropped out of the medals. Kato, a former world record holder, only had to beat Mo's time by 0.014, but instead failed to break the 35-second barrier. Although Kato held on to third place, this gave the gold to Mo Tae-Beom, who had never before had won an international competition, and was considered more of a middle distance expert. In addition, it was the first ever gold medal for South Korea in Olympic speed skating.

View a Phase of this EventFinal StandingsRace 1Race 2

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal T
1 Mo Tae-Beom 20 South Korea KOR Gold 69.829
2 Keiichiro Nagashima 27 Japan JPN Silver 69.984
3 Joji Kato 25 Japan JPN Bronze 70.013
4 Lee Gang-Seok 24 South Korea KOR 70.041
5 Mika Poutala 26 Finland FIN 70.044
6 Jan Smeekens 23 Netherlands NED 70.211
7 Yu Fengtong 25 China CHN 70.236
8 Jamie Gregg 24 Canada CAN 70.268
9 Jeremy Wotherspoon 33 Canada CAN 70.282
10 Zhang Zhongqi 27 China CHN 70.288
11 Ronald Mulder 23 Netherlands NED 70.301
12 Tucker Fredricks 25 United States USA 70.356
13 Yuya Oikawa 29 Japan JPN 70.428
14 Dmitry Lobkov 29 Russia RUS 70.468
15 Lee Gyu-Hyeok 31 South Korea KOR 70.489
16 Mike Ireland 36 Canada CAN 70.639
17 Akio Ohta 25 Japan JPN 70.662
18 Nico Ihle 24 Germany GER 71.071
19 Mun Jun 27 South Korea KOR 71.192
20 Simon Kuipers 27 Netherlands NED 71.331
21 Kyle Parrott 24 Canada CAN 71.344
22 Maciej Ustynowicz 26 Poland POL 71.349
23 Samuel Schwarz 26 Germany GER 71.510
24 Ermanno Ioriatti 34 Italy ITA 71.799
25 Wang Nan 22 China CHN 71.843
26 Nick Pearson 30 United States USA 71.928
27 Tuomas Nieminen 28 Finland FIN 71.987
28 Liu Fangyi 27 China CHN 72.240
29 Jan Bos 34 Netherlands NED 72.260
30 Markus Puolakka 24 Finland FIN 72.356
31 Konrad Niedźwiedzki 25 Poland POL 72.362
32 Aleksandr Lebedev 22 Russia RUS 72.420
33 Pekka Koskela 27 Finland FIN 72.478
34 Roman Krech 20 Kazakhstan KAZ 72.531
35 Timofey Skopin 20 Russia RUS 72.947
36 Yevgeny Lalenkov 28 Russia RUS 73.034
37 Mitch Whitmore 20 United States USA 73.048
38 Maciej Biega 21 Poland POL 74.576
AC Shani Davis 27 United States USA DNF