Joey Cheek

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William Joseph Cheek (born June 22, 1979, in Greensboro, North Carolina) is an American speed skater and former inline speed skater. He specializes in the short and middle distances.


Cheek's breakthrough was in the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, where he won the bronze medal in the 1,000 meters and just missed the podium in the 1,500 meters by 0.08 seconds.

In 2003 he won a bronze medal at the World Single Distance Championships in Berlin in the 1,000- and 1,500-meter events. Both distances at that tournament were won by Dutch speed skater Erben Wennemars. In 2005, Cheek made the podium for the first time in the World Sprint Championships, again behind Wennemars.

On January 22, 2006, in Heerenveen, Cheek became world sprint champion. On aggregate he beat Dmitry Dorofeyev of Russia and Jan Bos of the Netherlands.

At the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy, Cheek won the men's 500-meter event in dominating style, recording a two-run total time of 1:09.76. That time was 0.65 seconds faster than runner-up Dorofeyev, and Cheek was the only competitor to break the 35-second mark in the competition, doing so in both of his runs (34.82 and 34.94). Cheek's time in the first 500-meter race is an unofficial world record for the fastest 500 meters ever at an ice rink at sea level. He went on to win silver in the 1,000-meter race, finishing just behind teammate Shani Davis.

He was elected by his teammates to carry the US flag into the closing ceremonies. Near...
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