Speed skating champions crowned at Roseville OVAL


submitted photo • Roseville’s Emily Bos leads the pack during a U.S. Long Track Age Group National Championships race at the Roseville OVAL Feb. 10.

The Roseville OVAL hosted the U.S. Long Track Age Group National Championships Feb. 10 and 11. More than 100 speed skaters from all over the country came together to race various distances in pack-style races to determine national champions in age classes from 7 to 70 and older.  

All ages competed in five distances over the two days of racing, with most groups racing 10 times over the two-day event, due to competing in semi-final and then finals races. The youngest skaters competed in distances between 200 and 600 meters, with distances increasing as athletes got older. 

Athletes from 15-49 raced five distances ranging from 500 to 3000 meters. A point system based on race finish rankings determines national champions. 

In the senior men group for ages 9-29, Steven Hartman of Falcon Heights won four of five distances to take the gold medal. Andrew Turner, his Midway Speedskating Club teammate — Midway trains at the OVAL — finished in second place overall, and Kelin Dunfee came in third. 

In the Junior A Men category, which includes 17- and 18-year-olds, Midway skater Patrick Miller of North St. Paul won the overall championship, winning every race, except the 3000 meters, where he came in second. Miller also broke a national outdoor record in the 1000 meters, with his time of 1:25.068, beating the old record held by Mac Blumel by .232 seconds. Adam Rosenthal of St. Paul came in third in every race, to take the bronze medal. 

In the Junior A Ladies category, Twin Cities Speedskating’s Ilsa Shobe and Sydney Holmes of Green Bay traded first and second place in each race, with Holmes coming out on top to take the gold medal and Shobe taking silver. 

Other local highlights

In the Junior B Ladies event, Midway Speedskating’s Madeline Lange took the silver medal, finishing second in the 1000-meter, 800-meter and 3000-meter races, and fourth in the 1500 meter and fifth in the 500 meter. Her second-place rankings in the longer races were enough to keep her point total ahead of the third place finisher.

In the Junior D Ladies category for 11- and 12-year-olds, Emily Bos of Roseville came in sixth and Teagan Wetteland of Roseville and Ella Cagle of Chaska tied for eighth place. 

In the Junior E age category for 7-10 years, Max Weber of Little Canada came in seventh. For the Junior E ladies, Lauren Li of North Oaks came in fifth.

Some 11 outdoor national records were broken over the weekend, with seven of those records being broken by four local skaters. Greg Oly broke records for 60- to 69-year-old men in four of the five distances he skated. Patrick Miller, in the Jr. A age group, broke the record for the 1000 meters and Gary Groen beat the national record for the 800 meters in the 70+ age group. 

 


— submitted by Cindy Johnson

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