Dutch speed skater Sven Kramer was presented with the Oscar Mathisen Award, also known as the Speed Skating Oscar, at the ISU World Cup in Stavanger on Saturday.
The 31-year-old received the prize for his outstanding 10,000m performance at last season’s World Championships, which doubled up as the official test event for the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games.
On the sea-level Olympic track of Gangneung, in the Republic of Korea, Kramer won the 10,000m title in 12 minutes, 38.89 seconds, only two-and-a-half seconds short of Ted-Jan Bloemen’s Salt Lake City world record. Kramer’s time was a personal best and a Dutch national record, which in his case is the same thing.
“I’m very happy with this award,” Kramer said.
“That 10,000m was my most important race last season and it was very good. To get this recognition is very satisfying.”
The Oscar Mathisen Award was introduced by Oslo Skøiteklub (Oslo Skating Club, OSK) to commemorate the legendary Norwegian speed skater Oscar Mathisen (1888–1954).
Norwegian Knut Johannesen was the first to win the award in 1959. Kramer had already won the trophy in 2007, and becomes the third Dutch skater to win the award more than once after Kees Verkerk (1966, 1967) and Ard Schenk (1970, 1971, 1972).