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Russia’s Ivan Skobrev, Norway’s speed skaters skipping 10,000m

Sochi Olympics Speedskating Men

Russia’s Ivan Skobrev trains wearing a ripped suit at the Adler Arena Skating Center during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)

Matt Dunham

The ranks are thinning in the men’s 10,000m competition, the final individual men’s speed skating event of the 2014 Olympics.

Russia’s Ivan Skobrev (pictured) and all three Norwegian competitors (Havard Bokko, Sverre Lund Pedersen and Simen Spieler Nilsen) have bowed out, according to the Associated Press.

There’s no explanation from the Russian side while a spokesman from Norway emphasized that they want to focus on the team pursuit. That could very well be part of the justification for Russia, too.

One might also surmise that the Dutch dominance of the event at Sochi might have something to do with it, too.

Follow James O’Brien @cyclelikesedins