• Kyodo


Speedskater Tomomi Okazaki outpaced the field in the women’s 1,000 meters en route to capturing her first victory at the single-distance championships on Sunday.

Okazaki clocked 1 minute, 17.57 seconds to finish ahead of Aki Tonoike, who timed 1:18.11 in second, and Maki Tabata who came third in 1:18.22 at the M-Wave ice arena in Nagano.

In other action, Yusuke Imai, who won his first 1,500 crown in five years a day earlier, blew away the competition to win the 1,000 in 1:10.31 for a new meet record. Takahiro Ushiyama placed second in 1:11.01 while third place went to Takaharu Nakajima in 1:11.09.

Eriko Ishino won the women’s 3,000 in 4:10.12 in a race that had to be timed with a stopwatch after the official tournament clock failed to operate properly. Kesato Miyazaki claimed top honors in the men’s 3,000, which was newly introduced at this meet, in 3:51.63.

The single-distance championships serve as qualifiers for the first half of the upcoming World Cup season.

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