|Date||20 February 2010 — 16:15|
|Location||Richmond Olympic Oval, Richmond|
|Participants||37 from 14 countries|
|Olympic Record||1:43.95 WR / Derek Parra USA / 19 February 2002|
American Shani Davis was the man to beat in this event, especially after his 1,000 m victory. A silver medallist in 1,500 m four years earlier, Davis had since won the 2007 and 2009 world titles, as well as the 1,500 m World Cup of 2008 and 2009. In March 2009, he had become the first man to break 1:42 in the event, subsequently lowering the world record to 1:41.04 early in the 2009/2010 season. Coming into the Olympic race, the only “blemish” on his record was the loss to fellow American Chad Hedrick in the Calgary World Cup earlier in the season.
The first skater to approach the track record, set by Davis at the 2009 World Championships, was Ivan Skobrev, bronze medallist in the 5,000 m. In his breakthrough season, the Russian outpaced home favorite Denny Morrison to cross the line after 1:46.42. But that mark didn’t even survive the next pair, which featured Mark Tuitert and Håvard Bøkko. Several years back, Tuitert had won two 1,500 m World Cup titles (2004/2005) and the 2004 European Championship, but he had struggled since. Bøkko had been the most consistent performer behind Davis on the World Circuit, taking 2nd place in the first two races. The duel was a fast race, with both Tuitert and Bøkko both going well under Skobrev’s splits. The two took the leading positions, Tuitert with 1:45.57, Bøkko with 1:46.13.
In the final pair, Davis took off with a pace just slightly off Tuitert’s. But Davis, usually known for his faster closing laps, now lost ground to the Dutchman in the final 800 m. He was even close to losing his 0.6-second lead over Bøkko in the last lap, but held on take to the silver medal by just 0.03.
|Pos||Pair||Competitor||NOC||Time||300 m||700 m||1100 m|
|8||12O||Mikael Flygind Larsen||NOR||1:46.77||23.82||49.97||1:17.56|
|20||7O||Christoffer Fagerli Rukke||NOR||1:48.62||23.95||50.45||1:18.38|
|29||3O||Fredrik van der Horst||NOR||1:49.58||24.61||52.16||1:20.45|