Record-breaking Dutch speed skater Ireen Wüst has won solo gold medals at five Olympics in a row ©Getty Images

Ireen Wüst of The Netherlands become the first Winter Olympian to win gold at five consecutive Games with victory in the women's 1,500 metres speed skating race here in Beijing.

Her time of 1min 53.28sec was also a new Olympic record.

Miho Takagi of Japan clocked 1:53.72 for silver. 

Bronze went to another Dutch skater, Antoinette de Jong, in 1:54.82.

It was Wüst's sixth gold and 12th Olympic medals in all which makes her the most successful Dutch Olympic competitor of all time.

"I feel like I'm in a dream, a fantastic film," Wüst told Dutch broadcaster NOS.

"It gradually descends into what I've done, it’s quite unique."

When Wüst posted her winning time, there were still three pairs to go.

She faced an anxious few moments, especially when Takagi went off fast in the final heat, but in the end the Japanese skater finished 0.44sec behind.

"It's one of the best 1,500m races she ever skated, and again she does it when it really counts," Dutch coach Gerard Van Velde said.

"That’s a gift, and that’s why she’s the greatest Olympian in The Netherlands," he added.

At 35 years and 311 days old, Wüst became the oldest champion at the distance.

Wüst is also the first athlete to win individual gold medals at five different Olympic Games.

Wüst won this race at Vancouver 2010 and Pyeongchang 2018, plus the 3,000m at Turin 2006 and Sochi 2014.

"She's fit, throughout the week she just skated very well," Van Velder added.

American Brittany Bowe also paid tribute to her rival.

"Words can’t describe her class, I mean, she’s the greatest of all time as her performance shows," Bowe said.

"I’m honoured to have competed against her for so many years and even more so to call her a friend."