KEARNS — Brittany Bowe made it a perfect sweep.
The Florida native who now calls West Jordan home skated to a personal record in the 1,500-meter race at the U.S. long track single distance speedskating championships Sunday inside the Utah Olympic Oval. She finished in 1:53.98, a little more than two seconds faster than second-place finisher Heather Richardson, who crossed the line in 1:55.19. Jilleanne Rookard was third with a time of 1:58.32.
“I kept the same mentality throughout the weekend, but of course there are things here and there I need to work on,” Bowe said. “One of the things I’m trying to focus on is improving my opener times, which is obviously more important in the 500 meter and the 1,000 meter, but I think just improving on that will improve each of my races.”
Bowe was thrilled to finish every race with a victory.
“It’s been a very exciting weekend,” she said. “I really just went into the weekend to prep myself for Calgary in about two weeks. I skated some really fast times, some personal bests, and it was a great start to the season.”
Two-time Olympian Shani Davis won the men’s race to make it two golds in two days. He skated the distance in 1:44.12, while Joey Mantia finished second with a personal best of 1:44.21. Brian Hansen was third, finishing in 1:44.21.
Davis said he’s feeling good heading into the World Cup season, knowing he can get faster.
“I’m just happy that I feel like I’m on the right path, and I’m really happy with my effort,” said Davis, who holds the world record for both the 1,000- and 1,500-meter races, incidentally both set at the Kearns ice rink. “The level of competition is really rising in America again, so it’s only going to push us to become stronger and better, and I’m looking forward to down the road and seeing where we are later in the year.”
Richardson, who swept these races last season, said she’s on track with her training.
“I just want to have improvement each race, so hopefully each World Cup gets better,” Richardson said.
The World Cup season begins Nov. 8-10 in Calgary, and the competition will be broadcast live on IceNetwork.com.
The teams for the U.S. were named following Sunday’s team pursuit. The teams are as follows:
500m: Mitch Whitmore, Tucker Fredricks, Brian Hansen, Jonathan Garcia, Joey Mantia, Brittany Bowe, Heather Richardson, Lauren Cholewinski, Sugar Todd, Elli Ochowicz.
1,000m: Shani Davis, Brian Hansen, Joey Mantia, Trevor Marsicano, Mitch Whitmore, Brittany Bowe, Heather Richardson, Sugar Todd, Jilleanne Rookard, Rebekah Bradford-Plat.
1,500m: Shani Davis, Joey Mantia, Brian Hansen, Trevor Marsicano, Joanthan Kuck, Brittany Bowe, Heather Richardson, Jilleanne Rookard, Kelly Gunther.
3,000m: Jilleanne Rookard, Petra Acker, Anna Ringsred, Maria Lamb.
5,000m: Jonathan Kuck, Emery Lehman, Joey Mantia, Patrick Meek, Jilleanne Rookard, Petra Acker, Anna Ringsred, Maria Lamb.
1,0000m: Jonathan Kuck, Emery Lehman, Joey Mantia, Patrick Meek.
*Theresa Cliff-Ryan has been offered a 3,000m start position for the ladies