Wust gives Dutch another speedskating gold
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SOCHI, Russia — Ireen Wust gave the Netherlands its second straight gold medal at the Olympic speedskating oval by winning the women's 3,000 meters Sunday.
Skating in the next-to-last pairing, Wust turned in a time of 4 minutes, 0.34 seconds to knock off defending Olympic champion Martina Sablikova of the Czech Republic.
Sablikova settled for the silver in 4:01.95, clapping for her rival after Wust crossed the line.
The bronze went to Olga Graf, who gave Russia its first medal of the Winter Games in 4:03.47 and sent the crowd at Adler Arena into a frenzy.
Six-time Olympian Claudia Pechstein was looking to win her 10th Olympic medal, but the 41-year-old German faded badly over the final laps and didn't even make the podium. She was fourth in 4:05.26.
The king and queen of the Netherlands were again in the crowd, just as they were the day before when Sven Kramer took gold in the first speedskating event of the games, the men's 5,000. The royal couple saw another winning performance by their speedskating-mad nation.
The Dutch have now won 29 Olympic golds, pulling even with the United States for the most victories in the sport.
Jilleanne Rookard of Woodhaven, Mich., who skated in a pairing with Graf, was the highest-finishing American. She took 10th out of 28 skaters in 4:10.02.
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