Canadian Ted-Jan Bloemen captures gold for men’s speed skating final

Published On February 15, 2018 | By Allana Johnson | 2018 Olympics

Dutch-born Canadian Ted-Jan Bloemen won the gold medal for men’s 10,000 metre speed skating at the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics.

Bloemen won the medal with a historic run by finishing the race in 12 minutes with 33.77 seconds, which set a new Olympic record for fastest race. This is Canada’s first ever gold medal at this event.

Bloemen spoke to the media shortly after his gold medal victory.

“I always felt from deep inside that I was able to do something special on the ice, but I was never able to show it,” he said. “I found that different way and got way more than I ever would hoped.”

This was a drama-filled final race as the Dutch-Canadian was going against Dutch athlete Jorrit Bergsma for the gold medal.

Bergsma previously won gold in Sochi 2014, and completed his final run at PyeongChang to set an Olympic record. Bergsma’s historic record was short-lived, as Bloeman’s final run beat Bergsma’s time by 2.21 seconds.

Prior to his gold medal victory, Bloemen won a silver medal in the men’s 5,000 metre speed skating this past weekend.

Director of Sport Development at Speed Skating Canada , Janice Dawson, was ecstatic about the victory.

“I wasn’t surprised since he had an amazing World Cup run, and was great at other circuits,” she said. “It’s a huge accomplishment for him and his family.”

Before the Medals

Bloemen, born in Leiderdorp, Netherlands, began his speed skating at a young age and competed in many World Junior tournaments representing the Netherlands. His best skating season occured in 2009/10, when he won the National Championship, which qualifed him for numerous international tournaments.

After that season his performance worsened, losing him a contact extension. His father, who was born in New Brunswick, encouraged him to come to Calgary to rejuvenate his fading career in a new country.

In 2014, Bloemen got his Canadian citizenship and was a part of the Canadian national team. The following year he won silver at the 2015 World Single Distance Speed Skating Championships.

Switching from the Dutch orange to donning the Canadian red and white appears to have worked. Bloemen would later set a world record time at an ISU World Cup event, beating the previous world record by 5 seconds.

After intensely training with coach Bart Schouten for several years, he was ready for PyeongChang.

Now, Canada can appreciate his father’s wise decision to push his son to come to Calgary. That choice has now lead Bloemen to a gold and silver medal on the world’s largest biggest podium.

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