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Women hope to end U.S. medal drought in speedskating

Heather Richardson and Brittany Bowe, ranked first and second in the world, respectively, are the best options for the Americans and will race in the 1,500 meters Sunday.

February 15, 2014|By Jared S. Hopkins
  • Speedskater Heather Richardson is ranked No. 1 in the world at 1,500 meters and will get a chance to earn America's first medal at the Sochi Olympics on Sunday.
Speedskater Heather Richardson is ranked No. 1 in the world at 1,500 meters… (ANDREJ ISAKOVIC / AFP/Getty…)

SOCHI, Russia — Ranked 1-2 in the world, Heather Richardson and Brittany Bowe are the United States' best two options to get the U.S. speedskating team on the board and take the pressure off an ongoing medal drought.

On Sunday, the former in-line skaters race in the 1,500 meters. After swapping a new Under Armour suit for an old one, the male counterparts on the team went 0-4 in Saturday's 1,500.

Richardson and Bowe have struggled in Sochi as well.

FRAMEWORK: Best images from Sochi

Richardson, 24, finished eighth in the 500 and seventh in the 1,000. Bowe, 25, was 13th in the 500 and eighth in the 1,000.

Still, they're not likely to be counted out. Bowe medaled twice this World Cup season in the 1,500, including one win. Richardson took a bronze.

How exactly skaters are shaking off the distraction of the suit swap remains a mystery. An official for the federation whisked them away from the media zone after a morning training session.

jshopkins@tribune.com

Twitter: @jaredshopkins

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