|Date||10 February 1984 — 09:15-11:00|
|Location||Pista za brzo klizanje Zetra, Sarajevo|
|Participants||42 from 20 countries|
|Olympic Record||38.03 / Eric Heiden USA / 15 February 1980|
The event favorite was considered to be Soviet skater Sergey Fokichev, who in a recent international meet at Davos, had become the first skater under 37 seconds at any rink besides Medeo . The world record holder was Pavel Pegov, who set the mark of 36.57 at Medeo in 1983, but he was competing only in the 1,000 in Sarajevo. The 1983 World Sprints had been won by Japan’s Akira Kuroiwa, but he was also only in the 1,000. In the opening pair American Nick Thometz posted 38.56, but he was bested by his pairmate, Fokichev, who finished in 38.19. In that pair, Japan’s Yoshihiro Kitazawa, a complete unknown, finished in 38.30 to move into second place ahead of Thometz. The sixth pair had American Dan Jansen and the 1981 World Sprints champion, Frode Rønning of Norway, and they were considered threats, although Jansen was still young. Jansen narrowly finished ahead of his teammate, Thometz, posting 38.55, but Rønning was disappointing with 38.58. The next pair had Canada’s Gaétan Boucher, who had been second at the 1982 World Sprints. When he finished in 38.39 the medals were decided. There were 14 pairs yet to race, but as the sun warmed the ice, only the early starters could contend. Fokichev was the gold medalist, but had been a complete unknown outside the Soviet Union until recently, having never competed internationally prior to the 1983-84 season. He would turn out to be a fairly good sprinter, winning both 500s at the 1984 and 1987 World Sprints, and posting two World Cup victories over 500 metres.
One unusual competitor in the event was Errol Fraser of the British Virgin Islands. Born in New York, Fraser had dual citizenship and had competed in a few international races training for the Winter Olympics. He was the first Olympian from the British Virgin Islands or any Caribbean nation, and was the first black Olympic speed skater.
|18||10O||Kai Arne Engelstad||NOR||39.28||10.42|
|24||14I||Hans van Helden||FRA||39.71||10.68|