KEARNS, Utah – Japan’s Tomonori Kawata dashed to victory in the inaugural World Cup 100-meter speed skating event on Friday while Olympic double medalist Hiroyasu Shimizu took third.
Kawata outpaced the field in the men’s race at the Utah Olympic Oval crossing in 9.44 seconds in the event, which is the shortest distance ever introduced at a World Cup after 500 meters.
“I’m happy. This will help me get ready for the 500 meters, so I give myself a passing grade. I still don’t think of the 100 as one of the main events in the sport yet,” Kawata said.
Shimizu, who owns the world record in the 500, clocked a time of 9.51 for third behind Canadian Mark Nielsen (9.45).
Russia’s Svetlana Zhurova won the women’s 100 in 10.31.
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