Dutch Winter Olympics team nets 17 medals; Schouten takes third gold, Kramer retires
Dutch long track speed skater Irene Schouten achieved her third Olympic title in Beijing after winning gold in the mass start. Her win means the Netherlands will likely close out the Winter Games with eight gold medals for the third time in a row. The Netherlands won 17 medals overall, according to the Olympic Medal Table.
The five other Dutch gold medals were won by skaters Ireen Wüst (1500 meters), Kjeld Nuis (1500 meters) and Thomas Krol (1000 meters), short track athlete Suzanne Schulting (1000 meters) and the women's short track relay team (Schulting, Yara van Kerkhof, Selma Poutsma and Xandra Velzeboer).
Thanks to the gold medal won in the mass start, Schouten is now 15th in the ranking of best Dutch Olympians ever. After her teammate, Marijke Groenewoud, fell, Schouten was left alone to complete the mass start. "I had to do it all myself. But that's why I deserved to win, I think," she told NOS.
The Winter Games also saw long track speed skater Sven Kramer end his career after coming in last place at the final of the men's mass start. He will officially say goodbye to the public during the World Cup final in Heerenveen on March 12.
"It's been a long ride, with a lot of ups and downs,” Kramer said. “I'm super proud of my career. There's a time to arrive and there's a time to leave.”
Schouten will carry the Dutch flag during the Closing Ceremony.
Reporting by ANP.