Shani Davis flipped back his hood, put his hands on his knees and coasted around the practice lane at Adler Arena, staring straight down at the ice.
There would be no third gold medal in the 1,000 meters.
No medal of any color.
It was a stunning defeat for one of the greatest speedskaters ever.
"I have to live with this for the rest of my life," Davis said.
His shot at Olympic history ended Wednesday when Stefan Groothuis won gold for the Netherlands in the 1,000, dashing the American's hopes of becoming the first male speedskater to capture the same event at three consecutive Olympics.
After Davis completed the first full lap of the 2½-lap race, it was clear his reign was over. He crossed the line more than seventh-tenths of a second behind Groothuis' winning time of 1 minute, 8.39 seconds.
"I just had a misfortunate race," said Davis, who wound up eighth and gave Groothuis a congratulatory pat on the back after the final pair was done.
Groothuis earned the fourth gold medal in five speedskating events for the Dutch at these Winter Games. At 32, he became the oldest gold medalist ever in the 1,000, sparking another orange-clad celebration on the infield.
"This is so unreal," he said. "I thought Shani was going to better me."
For good measure, 500 champion Michel Mulder took the bronze, giving the Netherlands 10 out of a possible 15 medals overall through the first five events -- a dominating performance that sets it up to crush the record for most speedskating medals by a country at a single Olympics. East Germany captured 13 at the 1988 Calgary Games, but there are seven events left in Sochi.
Canada's Denny Morrison took the silver in 1:08.43. Mulder was third in 1:08.74.
Davis has a shot at redemption in the 1,500. He earned silver in that event at the last two Olympics and would love nothing more than to make it a gold after what happened Wednesday.
"Now I have to figure out how to prepare myself the best I can for that 1,500 race," he said. "Since one door closed, hopefully another one opens and I'm able to step in there."
Pairs figure skating: Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov won gold as Russia took the top two spots to reclaim its dominance in the sport.
Ksenia Stolbova and Fedor Klimov had a near-flawless free skate to move up from third after the short program and capture silver in front of the ecstatic home fans.
"I think tonight all of the country will celebrate this beautiful victory," Trankov said.
Four-time world champions Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy of Germany had to settle for bronze for the second straight Olympics.
Russia or the Soviet Union had won gold in 12 straight Olympics in the event before the streak ended four years ago.
The United States' Marissa Castelli and Simon Shnapir finished ninth.
Nordic combined: Eric Frenzel of Germany led after ski jumping and then powered home on the cross-country course to win the gold medal in the Nordic combined individual normal hill.
Akito Watabe of Japan took the silver, and Magnus Krog of Norway earned the bronze.
Billy Demong, the defending gold medalist on the large hill, was the leading American, finishing 24th.
Luge doubles: Germany won its third straight gold medal in luge as Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt captured the doubles competition.
Andreas and Wolfgang Linger of Austria, who were trying to become the first doubles team to win gold three times in a row, took silver. Latvia's Andris Sics and his brother, Juris, won the bronze. The U.S. duo of Jayson Terdiman and Christian Niccum finished 11th.
Men's hockey: Erik Karlsson scored two goals in Sweden's 4-2 victory over the Czech Republic, and Simon Moser scored with 7.9 seconds left in Switzerland's 1-0 victory over Latvia in the opening games of men's hockey.
Women's curling: Canada got a third straight win, beating Britain 9-6. The United States lost its fourth straight, 7-4 to China, and likely will need to win all five of its remaining round-robin games to stand a chance of reaching the semifinals.