Long live allround ~ Passion/Patin/Vitesse - Passion/Speed/Skating


22 avril 2019

Long live allround

The International Skating Union recently shared their championships schedule for the next few seasons and many speed skating fans, skaters and personalities have shared their opinion about the fact that the Allround speed skating championships won’t be a yearly event anymore. Here's the calendar:

We, at Passion/Speed/Skating think that the Allround world championships needs to remain a yearly event and that not doing so would be a bad thing for the sport of long track speed skating. To give you a more complete overview of our position, we teamed up with active members of the speed skating community and the #LongLiveAllround movement.

Jackob Savard, writer at Passion/Speed/Skating
The Allround world championships being my favorite event of the year and 10k being the distance I prefer to watch, I am obviously disappointed to see these two aspects of speed skating slowly being sent to oblivion by the ISU. Allround championships have been held every year since 1893 without any intermission except for the two World Wars. Thinking that there won’t be any in 2021, and that they’ll most likely skip other seasons after that makes me sad, but the number one thing that I found problematic is that, instead of working on improving the Allround championships to make them more appealing, the ISU just facilitates its death.

Maria Dalton, writer at Passion/Speed/Skating
I myself am very disappointed, along with many other fans with the changes to Allround. While the ISU should realistically take into account the opinion of spectators and fans, what is particularly concerning is the fact that they continue to annoy the disdain expressed by numerous skaters. Sven Kramer recently discussed how he may attempt to put together a commercial allround at Thialf - something that many skaters (according to him) are supportive of. I’m worried that the ISU has become out of touch with the athletes and fans themselves and seeks to improve the “convenience” of the international skating calendar, for me I just don’t understand how you can ignore the greats of the sport telling you this is a terrible idea, especially given the longstanding nature of the competition.

Julia Helgasson (@JuliaHelgasson)
I come from Estonia, a country where speed skating is not as deeply established as in the Netherlands or Norway however, it does not mean that this magnificent sport plays absolutely no role in Estonia. I could of course talk about how important allround is globally and refer to traditions as well as its structural and technical importance for the survival of real speed skating as we all know it – but I’d rather prove my points by bringing the example of Estonia. Particularly, I’d like to discuss why almost no one risks to take up allround in Estonia. In order to stay afloat in the sea of incredibly strong professionals from such allround nations as the Netherlands, Estonia must have something to offer in return, something credible, be that technique, specific skating style, strategy or experience. Assuming that the skaters are supposed to gain their training experience from the skaters of other countries, let us remember the amount of time the longest distances for men and ladies in a course of one season before allround championships is raced: two times per year. The lack of continuous rivalry and anticipation of another round kills the urge to get better at the said distances in the skaters preventing them from practicing long distances more which subsequently kills potential allrounders in their core. That being said, ISU does not make the situation any better by eliminating the annual nature of allround championships. With the lack of persistence comes the lack of necessity to train for allround. In this case, actually, ISU doesn’t even need to eliminate allround by any new changes in their communications: at this pace, the skaters themselves will be left unmotivated and unwilling to become allrounders. As a result, allround will simply die out, fade away, cease to exist. At this point, ISU will only have to put a fine point at the end of this “natural” process that they have launched. And they will not be the ones to blame.

SkatingSource (@SkatingSource)
Generally I would love for the Allround championships to remain an annual competition, mainly based on the tradition of the championships and fan/community support. I think it’s important for ISU to listen to the skaters and the fans, but also continue to make innovations in the sport (which is a tricky balancing act). Since the allround change was announced, most people (including athletes) I have talked to have been upset, which is usually a bad sign.

Update Skate (@Update_Skate)
I think my main point is something I'd call the "ISU trap". It's applicable to both the 10km and allround. In short, the ISU decides to organize less and less of both of the events, with less and less skaters being able to compete. Then they conclude: "few skaters are interested in these events anymore, let's organize them even less. It's a vicious circle, to be honest. The ISU should be supporting the roots of their sport and not lose the majority of their current fanbase in order to attract a few new fans. Apart from the world championships, speed skating doesn't have classical events. Which means, if you reduce the amount of World Championships even more, speed skating will become one of the many sports that people watch 1x in 4 years: namely during the Olympics. Allround should be supported, not destroyed by the ISU. The allround events should be something every skater wants to participate in. And currently, there are many skaters who could, but just don't do it, like Denis Yuskov, Peter Michael, the Koreans, etc. The ISU should look into WHY they don't participate and make sure everyone wants to participate next time, rather than concluding that allrounding is not popular anymore.

We think our message needs to be heard all across the speed skating world in order to make a difference and you can help us spread this message.

Please consider sharing this article to as much people as you can and make sure you follow our Facebook page, our Instagram account and our Twitter account for further development on the topic.

What is your opinion? Feel free to message us or to use #LongLiveAllround on twitter to make your opinion heard.

Long Live Allround!

0 commentaires:

Publier un commentaire