Valcepina, Knegt win at European short track speed skating

BY AP • January 13, 2018

DRESDEN, Germany (AP) Martina Valcepina defeated Italian teammate Ariana Fontana twice at the European short track championships to win her first major speed skating titles on Saturday.

Valcepina won the women's 1,500 meters when Fontana crashed out in the final laps, then claimed the 500 when she beat the six-time overall European Champion in the final.

''I wasn't expecting to win at all, so I'm really happy,'' Valcepina said.

Sofia Prosvirnova of Russia finished third in the 500, while Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands won the B final.

Sjinkie Knegt edged Russia's Victor An in a photo finish to win the men's 500, his second title of the day after the 1,500.

''I was very pleased to just beat Victor to the line, because I know it's an event he is targeting at the Olympics,'' Knegt said.

The Dutch skater defeated Russia's Semen Elistratov to win the 1,500, where Israel's Vladislav Bykanov finished third, followed by another Russian, Denis Ayrapetyan.

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