Despite the freezing temperatures, at least seven nights of temperatures around -10 Celsius would be needed to make sure the ice was thick enough for the classic Elfstedentocht skating race, experts told the Telegraaf on Friday.
`At the moment the ice layer is around 5cm and that is not enough. In addition, it did not freeze on December 31,´ said Jan Oostenbrug of the Friesland skating association. Regulations state the ice must be 15cm thick throughout the route.
The Elfstedentocht is a 200km race around the 11 cities of Friesland which was last held in 1997. As well as professionals, some 15,000 amateur skaters take part.
Meanwhile, the body of a 58-year-old man who disappeared after going skating in Friesland earlier this week has been found by friends under the ice.
And four skaters have been pulled to safety by a local using a windsurf board after they sank through the ice on the Loosdrecht lakes.
According to the KNMI weather bureau, the freezing temperatures at night are set to continue well into next week.
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