Friday 14 May 2021

Poor ice growth on Tuesday night, 11-city race in doubt

Reports of poor ice growth in Friesland on Tuesday evening dominate the news websites on Wednesday, but Elfstedentocht skating fever continues apace.

There are reports that police leave in Friesland has been cancelled and public transport companies have begun looking at the logistics of moving tens of thousand of people who want to watch the event.
The 22 Elfstedentocht ice department heads are due to meet again on Wednesday to discuss the likelihood of the 200 km race taking place, but with the thaw expected to set in on Sunday, it is touch and go whether of not the event will happen.
The last race around the 11 cities of Friesland took place during the big freeze of 1997.
On Monday, the ice masters said a further week of heavy frost would be necessary to give the green light. This is because tens of thousands of people are expected to flock to the frozen lakes and canals of Friesland to watch the event.
Meanwhile, an increasing number of official routes are being opened up to skating fanatics round the country.
In Amsterdam, on Saturday, the ‘legendary’ Keizersgracht short track race will take place, the Telegraaf reports.
And the Dutch national natural ice marathon championships are also taking place on the Grote Rietplas in Emmen. The men’s event, which starts at 13.30 hours involves completing 100 km round a six km course. The women and veterans must complete 70 km.

Skating links
A list of approved, safe skating routes
Photo: Novum/Boudewijn Benting

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