Speedskater Momoka Horikawa surprised the field — and herself — by winning the women's mass start at a World Cup meet for the first time in her career on Sunday.

Also in the finale of the 2022-23 World Cup tour in the Polish city of Tomaszow Mazowiecki, Miho Takagi came in third in the women's 1,000 meters, leaving her atop the season standings for the distance.

Takagi, a winner of four medals at last year's Beijing Olympics, including gold in the 1,000, had already claimed her second consecutive season title in the 1,500 meters.

The 19-year-old Horikawa followed her coach's advice to mark Canada's Valerie Maltais, whose background in short track speedskating has made her a strong mass start competitor.

Horikawa managed to beat Maltais after the two broke away from the field and skated neck-and-neck in the second half of the 16-lap race.

"I never thought I could win," Horikawa said. "I tried to win the race, but this is a surprise."

In the 1,000, Jutta Leerdam of the Netherlands won with a time of 1 minute, 14.94 seconds, 0.60 ahead of American runnerup Kimi Goetz and 0.73 in front of Takagi.

It was Leerdam's fifth win in as many races she entered, but she missed the second-to-last race and finished the tour with 300 points, one point below Takagi, who raced in all six, with five podium finishes.

"I wanted to wrap up the tour with a win, though," Takagi said. "I had been missing the mark with my skating until now, but this race felt like a starting point in being able to transfer more power into the ice."

The international speed skating season will culminate with the world championships beginning March 2 in Heerenveen, Netherlands.