• Kyodo

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Japan advanced from the women’s speedskating team pursuit quarterfinals on Saturday in Olympic record time as it began its gold medal defense at the Beijing Games.

The three-woman team of Ayano Sato, Miho Takagi and her older sister Nana Takagi set a blistering time of 2 minutes, 53.61 seconds at the National Speed Skating Oval, cutting 0.28 second off the trio’s record at the Pyeonchang Games four years ago.

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