Posts Tagged ‘shani davis’


Summary: U.S. Long Track Olympic trials concluded on Sunday evening.  For some skaters, making trials was the victory lap, for others making the team was the goal, and a few have their eyes on the podium.  After six days of racing, the team for South Korea has been set.  The Men’s team is filled with familiar faces and many inliners.  The Women’s team stole the headlines with inliner Erin Jackson making the team after only skating ice for four months.  Jackson’s inline teammate Brittany Bowe also made the team.  Cyclist Mia Manganello (formerly of the Twin Cities) will compete in two events, and just missed adding a third event.  Trials were filled with drama and great stories.  Old timers like K.C. Boutiette nearly pulled it off.  Theron Sands dream of skating at trials came true.  For others, there is the agony of defeat.  Four years spent at the rink, the gym, and in the car going to both went unfulfilled.  The only solace may be that it is better to have tried and not succeeded, than to have not been courageous enough to try and have to wonder “what if”.  Read through the summaries of each days events for links to stories on skaters journeys to trials.

Men’s team

  • Shani Davis: 1,000 meters; 1,500 meters
  • Brian Hansen: 1,500 meters, mass start
  • Joey Mantia: 1,000 meters; 1,500 meters; mass start
  • Mitchell Whitmore: 500 meters; 1,000 meters
  • Jonathan Garcia: 500 meters
  • Kimani Griffin: 500 meters
  • Another skater could be added to the men’s team as a team pursuit specialist. Emery Lehman’s name has been mentioned for that position.

Women’s team

  • Carlijn Schoutens: 3,000 meters; 5,000 meters
  • Heather Bergsma: 500 meters; 1,000 meters; 1,500 meters; mass start
  • Brittany Bowe: 500 meters; 1,000 meters; 1,500 meters
  • Erin Jackson: 500 meters
  • Mia Manganello: 1,500 meters; mass start
  • Jerica Tandiman: 1,000 meters

Full Story:

U.S. Long Track Speedskating Olympic Trials are underway at the Pettit Center in Milwaukee.  It has been 20 years since the Pettit last hosted trials, which are typically in Salt Lake.  The decision to head to Wisconsin was due to its elevation being similar to that of South Korea’s Gangneung Oval.  Recall the U.S. Team’s disastrous performance in Sochi was attributed, in part, to training at high elevation but racing at low elevation.

Races are broadcast live during certain time slots on NBC Sports Network (click here for the schedule).  Coverage is also being live streamed: click here. Results will be posted below as the week progresses.

Inliners, local ice speedskaters, and other notable participants meeting entry qualifying times and competing at trials include: Steven Hartman, Jeffrey Swider-Peltz, Justin Stelly, Joey Mantia, 47 year old 1994 Olympian K.C. Boutiette, Kyle Ronchak, 53 year old Theron Sands (Bob Fenn’s final star pupil), Shani Davis trying to make his 5th team, Mitch Whitmore, Briana Kramer, Ali Thunstrom, Rebekah Bradford Plath (wife of former MN inliner Eric Plath), Blair Cuikshank (the 17 year old daughter of Bonnie Blair and Dave Cruikshank), Brittany Bowe (recovering from post-concussion syndrome, vestibular dysfunction and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome), former Olympians Sugar Todd, Maria Lamb, and Kelly Gunther  (click here for the full participation list).

Skaters are competing for 8 positions for women and 8 positions for men.  If a skater qualifies in multiple distances the U.S. team would consist of fewer skaters. The U.S. has earned starting spots in 10 of the 14 events competed in at the Olympics.

  • Three women will represent the U.S. in the 500m, 1000m, and 1500m, one women in 3k, one in the 5k, and two in the mass start.
  • Three men will represent the U.S. in the 500m, 1000m, 1500m, plus two in the mass starts.  U.S. Men did not obtain qualifying spots for the 5k or the 10k.   U.S. Men will compete in the team pursuit, but the women did not qualify.


The first day of Olympic qualifying quickly illustrated the ice in Milwaukee is dramatically slower than the ice in Salt Lake or Calgary.  Emery Lehman skated a 6:18 5k in Calgary a few weeks ago, and was the top American today with a 6:28.  Other skater’s performance show similar differences.  Almost no one skated a season or personal best, despite spending four years training to peak this month.  In a sport where races are decided by fractions of a second, a 10 second drop off on slower sea level ice is noteworthy, but not entirely unexpected.

Women’s 3000m

The Dutch team, the best ice speedskating team in the world, held its Olympic trials just after Christmas.  Ireen Wurst, the most recognizable of the Dutch women, finished second at last month’s Dutch Olympic Trials with a time of 4:03.  Slow ice or not, the 10 second difference between Wurst and the top U.S. female is unnerving.  Carlijn Schouten’s 4:14, the top American, would have been good enough for 12th place among Dutch women.  Carlijn Schoutens was born and raised in the Netherlands, but obtained U.S. citizenship in 2014 in hopes of making it to the Olympics.

Mia Manganello is well known to Twin Cities athletes, perhaps by her former name of Mia Loquai.  Mia stepped away from ice years ago after the 2010 Olympic go round and became a star cyclists. The U.S. only qualified one spot in the Women’s 3k, so Mia may or may not get to compete.

1 Carlijn Schoutens LN4 USAUSA 4.14,02
2 Mia Manganello LSA USAUSA 4.15,73
3 Petra Acker LSA USAUSA 4.18,84
4 Nancy Swider-Peltz (1987) L30 USAUSA 4.26,35
5 Erin Bartlett LSA USAUSA 4.26,56
6 Maria Lamb L30 USAUSA 4.27,01 SB
7 Rebecca Simmons LSA USAUSA 4.35,00
8 Briana Kramer LSA USAUSA 4.37,20
9 Hannah Bosman LN1 USAUSA 4.42,61
10 Jacquelyn Bernico LN3 USAUSA 4.51,83

Men’s 5000m

24 year old Ian Quinn was only four seconds slower than his personal best.  Quinn won gold and silver in the past two American Cup 5k races.  Emery Lehman’s success surprises no one as he has been an up and coming skater since a disappointing 2014 Olympic performance.  Jeffery Swider-Peltz is a familiar name to local inliners as he was on our podiums all summer in 2016 (finishing just three points behind Kelin Dunfee in the Minnesota Inline Grand Prix).  KC Boutiette’s fourth place finish is nothing short of amazing after taking a decade away from racing and making a comeback at the age of 47.  Recall, however, that the U.S. Team did not qualify a skater to compete in the 5k at the Olympics.  Lehman may get to compete if a) countries that qualified a skater do not send skaters to the Olympics, or b) Russian skater bans could bump them from the roster of skaters.

Lehman’s 6:28 would have placed 14th in Dutch trials, right behind former Olympian Erik Jan Kooiman (World Record holder in the hour long skate – skaters try to get as many laps as possible in an hour – he put in 109.)   Sven Kramer, the best known Dutch skater, is returning to the Olympics with a qualifying time of 6:16, which was only good enough for second place on his team.

1 Emery Lehman MN3 USAUSA 6.27,90
2 Ian Quinn MSA USAUSA 6.32,95
3 Jeffrey Swider-Peltz MSA USAUSA 6.34,18 PR SB
4 KC Boutiette M45 USAUSA 6.47,02
5 Edwin Park MSA USAUSA 6.48,13
6 Chase Reichmann M30 USAUSA 6.52,02 SB
7 Justin Stelly M30 USAUSA 6.53,37
8 Casey Dawson MB2 USAUSA 6.56,41
9 Steven Hartman MN4 USAUSA 7.01,47
10 Theron Sands M50 USAUSA 7.05,17
11 Ethan Cepuran MA1 USAUSA 7.09,53
12 Conor McDermott-Mostowy MA2 USAUSA 7.13,09
13 Alex Zamojski MN3 USAUSA 7.26,52



Inliner Brittany Bowe leads the way in the 1k in just under 1:15.  Her personal best is 1:12.  Great to see that she has been able to overcome the aftereffects of the concussion and POTS.  Read about her condition and recovery here.   Heather Bergsma (Richardson) is a former Olympian and the reigning World Record holder in the 500 and the 1500m, but she makes the team in the 1000m (and probably will make it in the other events too).   After a second place finish in the 3k, Mia Manganello qualified in third in the 1000m.

Heartbreak for another skater with a Twin Cities connection, Rebekah Bradford.  She is among the nicest people you will meet at a speedskating event and is hard not to root for.  She finished a full second behind Mia.  Ali Thunstrom finished 14th, but was just fractions of a second off her personal best, when nearly everyone else was multiple seconds off their pace.

Heather Bergsma’s (Richardson) time looks pretty impressive compared to the Dutch Women’s Olympic qualifying times of 1:15:38 to 1:16:29.

Women’s 1000m:

1 Heather Bergsma LSA USAUSA 1.14,82
2 Brittany Bowe L30 USAUSA 1.15,52
3 Mia Manganello LSA USAUSA 1.18,23
4 Jerica Tandiman LN4 USAUSA 1.18,59
5 Kelly Gunther (1987) L30 USAUSA 1.19,34
6 Rebekah Bradford L35 USAUSA 1.19,36
7 Sugar Todd LSA USAUSA 1.19,41
8 Erin Bartlett LSA USAUSA 1.19,71
9 Bri Bocox LN2 USAUSA 1.20,19
10 Paige Schwartzburg LSA USAUSA 1.20,21
11 Franchesca Pasquarella LN1 USAUSA 1.20,59
12 Erin Jackson LSA USAUSA 1.21,73
13 Chrysta Rands LN2 USAUSA 1.22,71
14 Allie Thunstrom L30 USAUSA 1.22,86
15 Hannah Bosman LN1 USAUSA 1.23,05 SB
16 Briana Kramer LSA USAUSA 1.23,92
17 Sara Rehklau LN3 USAUSA 1.24,17
18 Esther Munoz LN1 USAUSA 1.24,20 SB
19 Jamie Nielson LA2 USAUSA 1.24,57
20 Rebecca Simmons LSA USAUSA 1.24,74
21 Mariah Richardson LSA USAUSA 1.25,69
22 Jacquelyn Bernico LN3 USAUSA 1.26,78


Men’s 1000m:

The 1000m is 2 1/2 laps around the track at all out sprint pace.  All of the top finishers are former Olympians.  Shani Davis is one of the U.S.’s most decorated skaters.  Joey Mantia, a name very well known to inliners in the Twin Cities beat him by a tenth of a second.  Both skaters were about two seconds off their best races.  Mitch Whitmore will be headed to his third Olympics, but his prior two experiences were in the 500m event.

Local skater Steven Hartman posted an impressive 12th place finish, with fellow local skater Kyle Ronchak in 14th.

The Dutch team skated times of 1:07, and 1:08 at their trials last month.  It is difficult to compare performances from different ice surfaces and elevations, but it looks like the U.S. team should be very competitive in the 1000m.

1 Joey Mantia M30 USAUSA 1.09,14
2 Shani Davis M35 USAUSA 1.09,22
3 Mitchell Whitmore MSA USAUSA 1.09,30
4 Jonathan Garcia M30 USAUSA 1.09,59
5 Kimani Griffin MSA USAUSA 1.09,63
6 Brian Hansen MSA USAUSA 1.09,74
7 Emery Lehman MN3 USAUSA 1.10,90 PR SB
8 Trevor Marsicano MSA USAUSA 1.11,45
9 Edwin Park MSA USAUSA 1.11,85
10 Austin Kleba MA1 USAUSA 1.12,20
11 William Gebauer MA2 USAUSA 1.12,62
12 Steven Hartman MN4 USAUSA 1.12,74
13 Brett Perry MSA USAUSA 1.12,77
14 Kyle Ronchak MN4 USAUSA 1.12,81
15 Casey Dawson MB2 USAUSA 1.13,34
16 Tyler Cain MN3 USAUSA 1.13,89
17 Conor McDermott-Mostowy MA2 USAUSA 1.14,46
18 Cooper McLeod MB1 USAUSA 1.14,98
19 Andrew Turner MN4 USAUSA 1.15,37
20 Ethan Cepuran MA1 USAUSA 1.15,58
21 Nathan Miller MN3 USAUSA 1.15,82
22 Patrick Miller MA2 USAUSA 1.16,27 PR SB
23 Levi Sinak M30 USAUSA 1.16,40 SB
24 Alex Zamojski MN3 USAUSA 1.16,63 SB
25 Steve Smykal MN4 USAUSA 1.16,90
26 John Sullivan MN4 USAUSA 1.16,99
27 Kevin Geminder M35 USAUSA 1.17,00 SB
28 William Valentine MB2 USAUSA 1.18,63
29 Evan Flaherty MA2 USAUSA 1.19,37
30 Kyle Essex MSA USAUSA 1.19,79



Only one women will represent the U.S. in the 5000m, and by a wide margin it will be Carlijn Schoutens, the Dutch transplant.     Had she skated that time in Dutch trials she would have finished 11th, second from last.  She skated the distance 6 seconds faster a couple of months ago in Salt Lake.  The top Dutch skaters posted times of 6:56.41, 6:56.60, and 6:57.

Women’s 5k:

1 Carlijn Schoutens LN4 USAUSA 7.12,25
2 Petra Acker LSA USAUSA 7.26,48
3 Maria Lamb L30 USAUSA 7.31,09
4 Rebecca Simmons LSA USAUSA 7.51,96

Men’s 10k:

The U.S. did not qualify for an Olympic position in the 10k.  Since an Olympic birth was not on the line, only a couple of skaters elected to skate the distance.   In the absence of Bob Fenn,  Roseville’s Midway Speedskating coach Andrey Zhuikov coached Theron through the grueling 10k.   Reichmann looked much more comfortable in the later stages of the race, but Theron hung in there.  Theron skated a Calgary 10k in 13:57 in March.  The Netherlands Sven Kramer qualified for the Dutch team with a time of 12:54.  Recall Kramer lost a second gold medal when he neglected to change lanes on lap 8 of the 25 lap race in the last Olympics.

1 Chase Reichmann M30 USAUSA 14.25,97 SB
2 Theron Sands M50 USAUSA 14.35,37


Skaters raced two 500m heats, starting once in each lane.  Qualifying is based on the fastest time, rather than the combined time.

Women’s 500’s:

Erin Jackson is the story of the day.  She is an inliner who started ice only FOUR months ago and is headed to the Olympics.  Read more on her journey and race day here.  Just a couple of weeks ago she had yet to break 40 seconds and now she is headed to the Olympics.  She also makes history as the first black woman to make the long track team.  Brittany Bowe and Jackson were teammates on the inline circuit and both are headed to South Korea.


1 Brittany Bowe L30 USAUSA 37,95
2 Heather Bergsma LSA USAUSA 38,24
3 Erin Jackson LSA USAUSA 39,22 PR SB
4 Sugar Todd LSA USAUSA 39,27
5 Jerica Tandiman LN4 USAUSA 39,84
6 Rebekah Bradford L35 USAUSA 39,91
7 Bri Bocox LN2 USAUSA 39,98
8 Allie Thunstrom L30 USAUSA 40,27
9 Kelly Gunther (1987) L30 USAUSA 40,31
10 Franchesca Pasquarella LN1 USAUSA 40,38
11 Paige Schwartzburg LSA USAUSA 40,53
12 Chrysta Rands LN2 USAUSA 41,21
13 Jamie Nielson LA2 USAUSA 41,80
14 Esther Munoz LN1 USAUSA 41,89
15 Mariah Richardson LSA USAUSA 42,03
16 Blair Cruikshank LB2 USAUSA 42,21
17 Hannah Bosman LN1 USAUSA 42,25 SB
18 Briana Kramer LSA USAUSA 42,83
19 Jacquelyn Bernico LN3 USAUSA 44,57


1 Brittany Bowe L30 USAUSA 38,18
2 Heather Bergsma LSA USAUSA 38,42
3 Erin Jackson LSA USAUSA 39,04 PR SB
4 Sugar Todd LSA USAUSA 39,38
5 Jerica Tandiman LN4 USAUSA 39,42
6 Rebekah Bradford L35 USAUSA 39,71
7 Paige Schwartzburg LSA USAUSA 40,19
8 Allie Thunstrom L30 USAUSA 40,28
9 Bri Bocox LN2 USAUSA 40,41
10 Franchesca Pasquarella LN1 USAUSA 40,42
11 Kelly Gunther (1987) L30 USAUSA 40,45
12 Chrysta Rands LN2 USAUSA 40,99
13 Esther Munoz LN1 USAUSA 41,92
14 Mariah Richardson LSA USAUSA 42,04
15 Blair Cruikshank LB2 USAUSA 42,21
16 Jamie Nielson LA2 USAUSA 42,26
17 Hannah Bosman LN1 USAUSA 42,59
18 Jacquelyn Bernico LN3 USAUSA 44,31

Men’s 500’s:

Dutch skater Michel Mulder won gold in 2014 and his brother took bronze.  This year his brother won trials and Michel placed fourth, just off the team.  Ronald Mulder won with a 34.49.  Think of anything under 35 seconds the way you would think of anything under 9.8 in the 100m dash.  Mitch Whitmore posted a 35.03 on slow Milwaukee ice and won by a 1/2 second.

Kimani Griffin finished second and is another former inliner.


1 Mitchell Whitmore MSA USAUSA 35,03
2 Kimani Griffin MSA USAUSA 35,46
3 Jonathan Garcia M30 USAUSA 35,54
4 Brett Perry MSA USAUSA 36,28
5 Austin Kleba MA1 USAUSA 36,37
6 Kyle Ronchak MN4 USAUSA 36,72
7 Xander Mark MSA USAUSA 36,81
8 Tyler Cain MN3 USAUSA 36,92 SB
9 Edwin Park MSA USAUSA 37,05
10 William Gebauer MA2 USAUSA 37,27
11 Steven Hartman MN4 USAUSA 37,52
12 Andrew Turner MN4 USAUSA 37,59
13 Cooper McLeod MB1 USAUSA 37,87
14 Nathan Miller MN3 USAUSA 37,95
15 Fletcher Codd MA1 USAUSA 38,01 SB
16 Conor McDermott-Mostowy MA2 USAUSA 38,06 PR SB
17 Casey Dawson MB2 USAUSA 38,16
18 Levi Sinak M30 USAUSA 38,21
19 Ian Ansel MSA USAUSA 38,53 PR SB
20 Evan Flaherty MA2 USAUSA 38,61
21 Steve Smykal MN4 USAUSA 38,67
22 Patrick Miller MA2 USAUSA 38,71 PR SB
23 Nick Turro MSA USAUSA 38,73
24 Ethan Cepuran MA1 USAUSA 38,74
25 Kevin Geminder M35 USAUSA 38,78 SB
26 Jon Aquino MB2 USAUSA 39,13
27 John Sullivan MN4 USAUSA 39,30
28 William Valentine MB2 USAUSA 39,57


1 Mitchell Whitmore MSA USAUSA 35,12
2 Jonathan Garcia M30 USAUSA 35,22
3 Kimani Griffin MSA USAUSA 35,26
4 Austin Kleba MA1 USAUSA 36,44
5 Xander Mark MSA USAUSA 36,63
6 Brett Perry MSA USAUSA 36,65
7 Edwin Park MSA USAUSA 36,68
8 Tyler Cain MN3 USAUSA 36,74 PR SB
9 Kyle Ronchak MN4 USAUSA 36,81
10 William Gebauer MA2 USAUSA 37,28
11 Fletcher Codd MA1 USAUSA 37,59 PR SB
12 Andrew Turner MN4 USAUSA 37,67
13 Cooper McLeod MB1 USAUSA 37,85
14 Nathan Miller MN3 USAUSA 37,93
15 Levi Sinak M30 USAUSA 38,21
16 Steve Smykal MN4 USAUSA 38,27 SB
17 Ian Ansel MSA USAUSA 38,70
18 Evan Flaherty MA2 USAUSA 38,72
19 Patrick Miller MA2 USAUSA 38,78
20 John Sullivan MN4 USAUSA 38,93
21 Nick Turro MSA USAUSA 38,97
22 Jon Aquino MB2 USAUSA 39,16
23 Kevin Geminder M35 USAUSA 39,18
DQ William Valentine MB2 USAUSA



Brittany Bowe posted a 1:55.9 to win the Women’s 1500m.  Heather Bergsma and Mia Mananello also broke the two minute threshold and will represent the U.S. in South Korea.

Women’s 1500m:

1 Brittany Bowe L30 USAUSA 1.55,92
2 Heather Bergsma LSA USAUSA 1.56,12
3 Mia Manganello LSA USAUSA 1.59,28
4 Carlijn Schoutens LN4 USAUSA 2.00,82
5 Kelly Gunther (1987) L30 USAUSA 2.02,95
6 Erin Bartlett LSA USAUSA 2.02,99
7 Franchesca Pasquarella LN1 USAUSA 2.03,12
8 Paige Schwartzburg LSA USAUSA 2.03,66
9 Petra Acker LSA USAUSA 2.04,45
10 Bri Bocox LN2 USAUSA 2.06,07
11 Nancy Swider-Peltz (1987) L30 USAUSA 2.06,15 SB
12 Rebekah Bradford L35 USAUSA 2.06,83
13 Briana Kramer LSA USAUSA 2.07,70
14 Rebecca Simmons LSA USAUSA 2.08,35
15 Hannah Bosman LN1 USAUSA 2.09,03 SB
16 Chrysta Rands LN2 USAUSA 2.10,06
17 Sara Rehklau LN3 USAUSA 2.10,13
18 Jennifer Kirsch L35 USAUSA 2.11,76
19 Jamie Nielson LA2 USAUSA 2.12,40
20 Esther Munoz LN1 USAUSA 2.13,06
21 Jacquelyn Bernico LN3 USAUSA 2.13,32
22 Mariah Richardson LSA USAUSA 2.16,41
23 Samantha Snyder LA2 USAUSA 2.17,13

Men’s 1500m:

Mantia and Davis finish on the podium again, as they did in the 1000m where they were first and second.   Emery Lehman came up 2 tenths of a second short.  Roseville’s Steven Hartman had a good race to finish 8th with a time that is similar to best Salt Lake skates this year.

1 Joey Mantia M30 USAUSA 1.46,30
2 Brian Hansen MSA USAUSA 1.46,64
3 Shani Davis M35 USAUSA 1.47,15
4 Emery Lehman MN3 USAUSA 1.47,37
5 Jeffrey Swider-Peltz MSA USAUSA 1.49,38
6 Edwin Park MSA USAUSA 1.50,17
7 Justin Stelly M30 USAUSA 1.50,43
8 Steven Hartman MN4 USAUSA 1.50,64
9 Ian Quinn MSA USAUSA 1.51,47
10 Trevor Marsicano MSA USAUSA 1.51,66
11 Casey Dawson MB2 USAUSA 1.52,81
12 Kyle Ronchak MN4 USAUSA 1.52,92
13 William Gebauer MA2 USAUSA 1.53,19
14 Conor McDermott-Mostowy MA2 USAUSA 1.53,32
15 Fletcher Codd MA1 USAUSA 1.54,07 SB
16 Austin Kleba MA1 USAUSA 1.54,21
17 Tyler Cain MN3 USAUSA 1.54,90
18 Nathan Miller MN3 USAUSA 1.56,77
19 Alex Zamojski MN3 USAUSA 1.57,41
20 John Sullivan MN4 USAUSA 1.59,15
21 Cooper McLeod MB1 USAUSA 2.00,48
22 Ethan Cepuran MA1 USAUSA 2.02,27



U.S. Men and Women each qualified to send two skaters in the mass start.

Women’s Mass Start:

Maria Lamb, who has had a disappointing Trials experience smoked the field in the Mass Start and was followed across the line (eventually) by Bergsma and Manganella (who both make the team in mass start).    The field decided not to chase Lamb when she broke.  Erin Bartlett made a move in the final lap, but could not hold off Bergsma and Manganella.  The Mass Start Olympic Team positions were based on three races, today was the final of the three races.  Lamb does not make the Olympic team because she did not have enough points in the first two races, but ended up third in total mass start points.

Men’s Mass Start:

Brian Hansen won the men’s event. Swidler-Peltz and Ian Quinn followed.  The Olympic positions for Mass Start go to Brian Hansen and Joey Mantia.