Mid-season bulletin in long track: The Netherlands ~ Passion/Patin/Vitesse - Passion/Speed/Skating


31 janvier 2019

Mid-season bulletin in long track: The Netherlands

While immense success at the World cups by the Dutch national team shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, so far this season the Dutch skaters were met with stiff competition from the strong Japanese team. The Netherlands has so far captured 39 medals – 8 in the team events, and 31 in individual races.

By Maria Dalton
Photo by Schaats Foto’s

Over the course of the first half of the season the Dutch team showed their strength across all distances, with strong performances by young skaters Patrick Roest and Esmee Visser in the distance races, and Kjeld Nuis in the sprints. With podium sweeps in the 1000m and 1500m, the team will look to continue their strong performances at the European Championships and over the course of the rest of the season. The ever-strong Dutch squad has found consistent success in the team events, as well as the Mass Start – lead by strong performances from Simon and Irene Schouten.

Nuis on top in the sprint distances
Kjeld Nuis has continued to find success in 1000m and 1500m through the first half of the season. The double Olympic gold medalist from Pyeongchang, has found himself on the podium at each of the World cup event he has competed in so far this season. Nuis currently sits in 3rd position in the 1500m, and in 2nd in the 1000m in the ISU World cup standings. Other skaters to make note of are Jan Smeekens, Kai Verbij and Thomas Krol, who have all found themselves on the podium over the course of the first half of the season. Smeekens and Verbij have each captured a single individual medal this season, while Krol has been nearly as consistent as Nuis – bringing home several medals in the 1000m/1500m.

Roest, Visser shine in the long distances
Patrick Roest has had a stellar season so far, from setting new track records at Thialf during the Dutch trials to his dominance in the long-distance races. Roest has captured 6 individual medals so far this season – he has been on the podium in every 1500m and 5000m race he has completed. The 2018 Allround champion looks to be in fine form as we head into the second half of the season and will be one to watch when the Allround championships descend on Calgary in March. Other skaters to make note of are Marcel Bosker and the legendary Sven Kramer who have also found success this season.

On the women’s side, Esmee Visser has been excellent so far this season, and she currently sits second overall in the distance races in the ISU rankings. She has faced stiff competition from veteran Martina Sablikova and Isabelle Weidemann, and we may be seeing the birth of a rivalry between the young skater and Canadian Isabelle Weidemann. Antoinette de Jong and Ireen Wust have also found success in the first half of the season, capturing one individual medal each and helping guide the team pursuit squad to multiple podium finishes.

Honorable mention to Sven Kramer, Antoinette de Jong and Kai Verbij for their titles at the European championships.

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