Updated: Monday, 17 February 2014 02:03 | By Agence France-Presse

Dutch 1-2-3-4 in women's 1,500m speed skating

Dutch athlete Jorien ter Mors smashed the Olympic record to take women's 1,500m gold on Sunday as the Netherlands swept the top four places, tightening their iron grip on the speed skating competition.


Dutch 1-2-3-4 in women's 1,500m speed skating

Netherlands' Jorien ter Mors crosses the finish line in the Women's Speed Skating 1500 m at the Adler Arena during the Sochi Winter Olympics on February 16, 2014 - by Jung Yeon-Je

The Netherlands have turned Sochi's Adler Arena orange, winning 16 of 24 medals on offer and taking five golds out of eight, leaving their rivals in the shade.

Ter Mors -- racing in the ninth pair -- went almost 4.5sec quicker than then race leader Olga Fatkulina of Russia, setting a mark of 1min 53.51sec that not even her Dutch rivals could match.

Defending champion Ireen Wust, who has already won the 3,000m and taken silver in the 1,000m, came second, 0.58sec off the winning time while Lotte van Beek (1:54.54) took bronze.

With nine pairs still to go, ter Mors -- also competing in short track in Sochi -- faced a long, anxious wait as her rivals chased down her time.

When the last racers crossed the line the champion, also competing in the short track at the Sochi Games, raised her arms in triumph and could not hold back her emotions.

"I'm not used to these kind of situations. In short track you immediately know if you have won. Now I had to wait and it was very nerve-wracking," said the gold medallist.

"I never expected to win gold here, but I had a very good race. Technically it was good. I kept pace, I skated in a compact position, it was just about keeping skating. At the finish line I looked up and I was first."

Marrit Leenstra finished fourth to underline the Netherlands' complete dominance.

"I tried to be satisfied because Jorien was just the best today," said Wust.

"My race was 90 percent and I needed 100 percent to win the gold," added the silver medallist, who equalled the Dutch record of six Olympic Winter Games medals held by Rintje Ritsma.

It is the first time a country has taken the top four places at an Olympic Winter Games since East Germany did it in men's luge at the 1972 Games.

The Netherlands' tally of 16 medals in speed skating is a new record for any country in any sport at a single Winter Games. Austria won 14 in alpine skiing in Turin in 2006.

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