The Olympic frustrations of High Point native Heather Richardson Bergsma continued Saturday with an 11th-place finish in the women's 500 meter event in Pyeongchang.
Kodaira's blistering time of 36.94 seconds bettered the previous mark rival Lee Sang-Hwa, who was second here, set in Sochi four years ago.
Kodaira, coming off a silver-medal 1,000m performance, took the title in an Olympic-record 36.94 seconds with Lee second in 37.33sec, just 0.01sec ahead of third-place Karolina Erbanova of the Czech Republic. Host country favorite Sang-Hwa Lee of Korea took home the silver medal finishing.39 behind Kodaira. Chinese Yu Jing finished ninth at 37.81 seconds.
Kodaira was widely expected to win the 1,000 gold, having set the world record in December at a World Cup race in Salt Lake City, but she made no mistake in her favored 500.
PyeongChang was her fourth and possibly her last Olympics, and Lee was aiming for a third straight gold in front of her home crowd.
"I was under big pressure, but I fought through it", Kodaira said.
Lee asked Kodaira if she would participate in the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing and the victor responded that she would only do so if Lee participated as well. "I had to work extra hard to prove myself to the world once again".
In its special Olympic pages, the Dong-A Ilbo newspaper used remarks exchanged between the gold and silver medalists as its headline for one story.
"She is a friend I can respect both as a person and as an athlete", Kodaira said.
Netherlands speedskater Jorien Ter Mors won gold in Wednesday's 1,000 meter race after setting a new Olympic record with a time of 1:13.56.
"No one would have blamed her if she retired after Vancouver or Sochi", said Lim Ji-eun, a 31-year-old office worker in Seoul.
Lee congratulated Kodaira for being such a good sport.
Jackson was in the first pairing of the women's competition. Of course I can't forget about her.
"I am here speaking calmly now, but when I saw I had gone under 37 seconds on this lowland rink, especially on this Olympic stage, I was over the moon", Kodaira said.
"She is my friend".
"I actually won the gold medal but I wanted to tell her about it in person, and it is such a shame that I am not able to do that".