WEST ALLIS, Wis. - Nancy Swider-Peltz Jr. won her first all-around national title and Chad Hedrick won the men’s all-around on Sunday at the U.S. Long Track Speedskating National Championships at the Pettit National Ice Center.
Swider-Peltz Jr. won the 5,000 meters in 7 minutes, 23.39 seconds and took second in the 1,500 in 2:03.77 to add to her results Saturday, a victory in the 3,000 and eighth-place finish in the 500.
Maria Lamb of Park City, Utah, was second in the 5,000 in 7:28.27 and Heather Richardson of West Jordan, Utah, won the 1,500 in 2:03.40.
Swider-Peltz Jr., a 21-year-old from Wheaton, Ill., said her legs were burning Saturday, but she fought through it. That new mental toughness carried successfully into Sunday’s events.
“This is why I go through those hard times to have this feeling of success,” she said. “It was a year that I was finally confident in doing all four races.”
Hedrick came off a strong performance Saturday when he edged rival Shani Davis in the 5,000 after Davis had beaten him earlier in the 500.
In the 1,500, Hedrick again nipped Davis, ranked fourth in the World Cup standings at the distance. Hedrick won in 1:46.52 and Davis was second in 1:47.20. Hedrick said he would take a relaxed approach in the 10,000. He did, but still finished second in 13:44.35.
“I wouldn’t say I did the best I could do, but I did a lot better technically, and came away with the win,” Hedrick said. “It’s the first win in the 1,500 I’ve had in quite a long time. It’s good to taste it again.”
Based upon their performances, Swider-Peltz Jr. and Hedrick should make the U.S. World Cup team that will be announced Tuesday.
Trevor Marsicano of Ballston Spa, N.Y., started and finished strong to win the 10,000 in 13:41.01.
“I’m in good company right now. I’ve got Chad and Shani,” the 19-year-old said of the two Olympians. “I’ll push them. They’ll pull me.”
Hedrick agreed with Marsicano’s assessment then went a bit further, predicting that he, Davis and Marsicano would be a formidable combination in team pursuit.
The skaters again had to contend with slow ice on the second day of the four-day meet, where skaters are chasing U.S. titles and spots on the U.S. World Cup team.
Davis, of Chicago, skipped the 10,000 and was not included in the all-around standings.