| Event type

10,000 metres, Men

Date22 February 2002 — 12:00
LocationUtah Olympic Oval, Kearns, Utah
Participants16 from 10 countries
Olympic Record 13:15.33 WR / Gianni Romme NED / 17 February 1998
StarterFranco CeschiITA
RefereeKnut LudahlNOR

Dutch skaters were highly favored in this event. Having swept the medals at the 1998 Olympics, they had finished 1-2 at all World Championships since. Three of them had won the world title: 1998 Olympic Champion Gianni Romme (1998, 2000), 1998 silver medalist Bob de Jong (1999) and Carl Verheijen (2001). Reigning World Champion Verheijen had not made the Dutch team, however, but with Jochem Uytdehaage, winner of the Olympic 5,000 m, he had a decent replacement. The best non-Dutch prospect was Frank Dittrich. The German had been bronze medallist at the World Championships 1998-2000 and had won the only World Cup competition at the distance earlier that season, when none of the Dutch skaters even made the podium.

Defending champion Romme had only narrowly qualified at the Dutch trials, suffering from illness at the time. The first of the favorites to skate in Salt Lake City, he set out to break his world record of 13:03.40, which he had set in late 2000. Still not in his 1998 form, he set out fast, as usual, but faded sooner than expected. His 13:10.03 was still one of the fastest ever 10,000 m recorded. Having won two Olympic medals already, much was expected from Jochem Uytdehaage. The Dutchman set out for a very tight schedule, recording lap times between 30.64 and 31.48. Not only did this result in a new world record, his time of 12:58.92 also made him the first man to beat 13 minutes in the 10,000 m.

With these results, the first two places seemed secure, and the bronze was to be decided in the very last pair. Frank Dittrich, known for his fast final laps, was paired with Lasse Sætre of Norway, known for his ability to )die and resurrect) during a race. The two remained close at first, with Sætre pulling away around the half-way point. While the German’s final sprint did not come, Sætre skated to a new personal best and a bronze medal.

14IJochem UytdehaageNED12:58.92WRGold
22IGianni RommeNED13:10.03ORSilver
38OLasse SætreNOR13:16.92Bronze
45IKeiji ShirahataJPN13:20.40
57OJens BodenGER13:23.43
61IDmitry ShepelRUS13:23.83
71ORoberto SighelITA13:26.19
87IKjell StorelidNOR13:27.24
93OBart VeldkampBEL13:27.48
108IFrank DittrichGER13:28.73
116IToshihiko ItokawaJPN13:31.96
123IJason HedstrandUSA13:32.99
134ODerek ParraUSA13:33.44
145OPaweł ZygmuntPOL13:35.50
156OBob de JongNED13:48.93
162ODustin MolickiCAN13:54.49