RICHMOND, British Columbia, Feb. 20 (UPI) -- Mark Tuitert of the Netherlands upset American world record holder Shani Davis Saturday to capture the Olympic 1,500-meter speed skating race.
Tuitert has been a competitive skater on the World Cup circuit the past three seasons, but was not expected to be up for the challenge at the Olympics. Davis, gold medalist earlier in the Vancouver Games in the 1,000-meter race, won silver over 1,500 meters four years ago and was the decided favorite Saturday.
Tuitert, however, put down a time of 1:45.57 in the 17th pairing and watched it stand up while the final four skaters came up short.
Davis was in the final pairing and he skated well in the middle portion of his race, briefly posting quicker intermediate times. He was unable to sustain the speed, however, and finished in 1:46.10 for the silver medal.
Havard Bokko of Norway, who skated in the same pairing with Tuitert, finished third in 1:46.13.
Tae-Bum Mo of South Korea, winner at the 500-meter distance and second to Davis over 1,000 meters, finished fifth. American Chad Hedrick, bronze medal winner at 1,000, was sixth.
The only men's speed skating race remaining in the Olympics is the grueling 10,000-meter competition, which will be held Tuesday. Sven Kramer of the Netherlands, the 5,000-meter gold medal winner, will be favored to capture that event.