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Shani Davis ‘not completely healed’ from Sochi, still eyes record

Shani Davis

US Shani Davis competes during the 1000 meters event of the Speed Skating Essent ISU World Cup Final in Heerenveen, March 14, 2014. The event runs from 14 to 16 March. AFP PHOTO / ANP / BAS CZERWINSKI (Photo credit should read BAS CZERWINSKI/AFP/Getty Images)

AFP/Getty Images

Shani Davis said he may never be fully healed from his Sochi Olympic disappointment, but the speed skater is starting fresh with the possibility of the 2018 Olympics on the horizon, targeting a record this season.

Davis, who won gold and silver medals in 2006 and 2010, finished no higher than eighth in three individual races at the Sochi Olympics.

Nobody from the U.S. speed skating team won medals, with suits and pre-Olympic training methods among the sources of blame from skaters and coaches.

Davis made no excuses, saying after his last individual race at Adler Arena that he just “didn’t have it.”

“It was a very difficult process to go through during and after the Olympics, not being able to meet the goals I set for myself that I worked so hard for in the years and months leading up,” Davis said in a Q&A on his website published Wednesday. “It was really hard trying to move forward at first and not let what happened in Sochi bring me down or possibly even halt my skating career. Of course I’m not completely healed and may never be, but I do believe going through the hardship of not being successful in Sochi ultimately strengthens me in all areas of life and it certainly makes me have a deeper appreciation for the success I had in the past.”

Davis isn’t committing to a run to the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics yet.

“Hopefully there will still be fuel left in the tank so we can finish our skating legacy as strong as possible,” he said in the Q&A.

What’s more pertinent is the upcoming World Cup season, beginning in November in Japan. Davis, 32, has 58 career World Cup race wins, which is nine behind the record held by retired Canadian Jeremy Wotherspoon.

“My goals are simple,” said Davis, who won five races last season and three the year before. “I just want to have fun skating and competing and try to chip away at the all-time record for World Cup victories.”

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