The Speed Skating Season came to a climax in the Heerenveen Hub this weekend with the ISU World Speed Skaitng Championships 2021. Check out a selection of some of the best pictures captured.
Nils van der Poel did what many thought to be impossible in modern Speed Skating on Sunday: breaking a world record on a sea-level rink. The 24-year-old Swede clocked 12 minutes, 32.95 seconds to win the world title in the 10,000m, an event he labeled ‘the soul of Speed Skating’. In the preceding 1500m, Thomas Krol (NED) got up again with a gold medal, having been disqualified for two false starts in Saturday’s 1000m.
Ragne Wiklund (NOR) made Speed Skating history on the final day of the ISU World Speed Skating Championships in Heerenveen with a surprise win in the Ladies’ 1500m. The 20-year-old from Oslo became only the second Norwegian female world champion in Speed Skating history, and the first since 1938. In the concluding 5000m, Irene Schouten (NED) took gold to make amends for a disappointing third place in Saturday’s Mass Start.
Kai Verbij cashed in on his steeply rising performance curve in the Heerenveen bubble, winning his career-second 1000m World title on Saturday. The Dutchman, and Pavel Kulizhnikov (RSU) and Laurent Dubreuil (CAN), who grabbed silver and bronze respectively, took full advantage of Verbij’s compatriot Thomas Krol’s disqualification for two false starts. Joey Mantia (USA) celebrated his third Mass Start world title, leaving Arjan Stroetinga (NED) and Bart Swings (BEL) behind with a powerful sprint in the final lap.
The USA’s Brittany Bowe collected the third 1000m world title of her career, beating defending champion Jutta Leerdam (NED) in a head-to-head battle in Heerenveen on Saturday. Marijke Groenewoud (NED) surprised the pack – and herself – when she crossed the line first to become the youngest-ever Ladies’ Mass Start champion at the ISU World Single Distance Championships.
Laurent Dubreuil became the second Canadian after three-time winner Jeremy Wotherspoon to win the Men’s 500m at the ISU World Speed Skating Championships in Heerenveen on Friday, and with a big smile described his success as “pretty close to the perfect race”. He beat silver medalist Pavel Kulizhnikov (RSU), and Dai Dai N'tab (NED), who took bronze. In the men’s Team Pursuit, the Netherlands won their eighth consecutive World title, despite the absence of the injured Sven Kramer.
Femke Kok (NED) won all four 500m World Cup races in January but there are no guarantees when it comes to the World title. Angelina Golikova (RSU), second to Kok in each of those races, finally beat her nemesis when it mattered most to win her maiden gold at the ISU World Speed Skating Championships in Heerenveen on Friday. Kok had to settle for silver this time, as Olga Fatkulina (RSU) took bronze. In the Ladies’ Team Pursuit, the Netherlands beat Canada.
Nils van der Poel (SWE) won the first title for Sweden in the history of the ISU World Single Distance Championships on Thursday. The 24-year-old endurance specialist upset major favorite Patrick Roest (NED), who had to settle for silver, while Sergey Trofimov (RSU) came away with bronze.
“The nerves cost me ten years of my life but I would give anything for this,” said Antoinette de Jong (NED) after winning her career first individual World title on home ice at Thialf on Thursday. Winning in three minutes, 58.47 seconds, the 25-year-old edged out six-time champion Martina Sáblíková (CZE) by 0.10 seconds in the Ladies’ 3000m, kicking off the 21st ISU World Single Distance Championships in Heerenveen. Irene Schouten (NED) took bronze in 3:59.75.
Two-time Olympic Short Track Speed Skating medalist Martina Valcepina has seen a lot in her career but to train and compete in a COVID-19-safe bubble is a new challenge.
“It’s great to win World Cups, but the goal is to win worlds in a couple of weeks.” Brittany Bowe made no secrets of her ambitions after her prolific ISU World Cup Speed Skating campaign in January. Her statement reflects the feeling of most Speed Skaters who are gearing up for the climax of the season. A total of fourteen titles is at stake in four days of Speed Skating at the ISU World Speed Skating Championships in snow-covered Heerenveen on February 11-14.
Don’t miss any of the action from the season’s thrilling races from the Heerenveen Speed Skating Hub, which will be streamed live to all fans on the ISU Skating YouTube page. Make sure you subscribe to the channel to receive live stream notifications. Some geo-restrictions will apply on YouTube, but if you find yourself unable to watch the stream, check out one of the channels below to get access.
The Swedish Figure Skating Association and the International Skating Union (ISU) are proud to announce that the official song for the 2021 World Figure Skating Championships will be performed by international artists Måns Zelmerlöw and Polina Gagarina. The single will be released on February 19, 2021.
She makes it look easy, but it’s years of hard work paying off. Femke Kok came, saw and conquered four 500m gold medals straight from her first A division start in the ISU World Cup Speed Skating this season. “As a kid I never won anything,” she smiles subdued. Growing up in Drachten near Heerenveen, with parents who both practiced Speed Skating themselves, Kok was raised on the famous Thialf ice rink.
The Netherlands’ Short Track Speed Skaters brought their teammate Lara van Ruijven, who tragically passed away last year, with them on the ice as competition resumed at the ISU European Short Track Speed Skating Championships in Gdansk, Poland.