Three Ocala speed skaters qualify for U.S. roster
Three speed skaters from Ocala qualified for a spot on the U.S. team for this year’s long track World Cup season. Joey Mantia, Brittany Bowe and Paige Schwartzburg were among the 17 athletes named to the roster Monday following the U.S. Speedskating Long Track Fall World Cup Qualifier in Kearns, Utah.
Mantia, a 2004 Vanguard graduate, finished first in the 1,500-meter men’s qualifying run with a personal-best time of 1:43.71 in front of Olympic champion Shani Davis. Mantia also had a personal-best time time of 1:08.10 in the 1,000 meters where he placed second behind Davis and finished third in the 500 meters.
On the women’s side, Bowe turned in the most dominating performance.
The 2006 Trinity Catholic product had first-place finishes in both the 500- and 1,500-meter qualifying races. Bowe skated the 500 meters in 37.60, nearly three-tenths of a second short of her personal-best time of 37.32. She skated the 1,500 meters in 1.53.29, just below her personal-best time of 1:52.45.
Schwartzburg, who went to Forest High School, placed third in the 1,500 meters behind Bowe and Heather Richardson-Bergsma with a personal-best time of 1:58.96. She finished fourth in the 500 meters with a time of 39.13 and skated the 1,000 meters in a time of 1:16.76, both personal best times as well.
The season’s first World Cup meet is in Calgary on Nov. 13-15, followed by a World Cup event on home ice at the Utah Olympic Oval on Nov. 20-22.