China's Ning Zhongyan finished 5th in the men's 1500 meters to come second overall in the season at the ISU Speed Skating World Cup Finals in Heerenveen in the Netherlands.
It was the best ever performance by a Chinese male skater.
Earlier, Ning had 186 points and was 24 ahead of second-placed Keel Nuis before the final and in first place overall. The 20-year-old was assigned in group 5 with another Dutch skater Marcel Bosker.
A general view at Ice Rink Thialf in Heerenveen, Netherlands, March 8, 2020. /VCG
Ning made a strong start in the first lap of the final race, completing it in 23.70 seconds, and then finished another two in 25.93 and 26.87.
But he failed to keep the pace in the final lap, recording a time of 29.19 seconds for a total time of 1 minute 45.693 seconds to finish fifth.
Dutch world record holder Nuis had a great performance overall on home soil with a time of 1 minute 43 seconds to claim a sixth World Cup title.
(L) Ning Zhongyan of China poses on the podium during the ISU World Cup Speed Skating Final at Ice Rink Thialf in Heerenveen, Netherlands, March 8, 2020. /VCG
But Ning's runner-up finish is still the best for a Chinese male skater at the distance. Another Dutch skater Thomas Krol came third.
(Cover: Ning Zhongyan. /VCG)
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