Dutch champion speed skater Sven Kramer has pulled out of all competition while he focuses on recovery from a back injury.
Kramer, 32, dropped out of the team pursuit and the 5,000 metres at the World Cup event in Obihiro this weekend and has now returned to the Netherlands to work on his recovery.
‘He is not happy about it, but he is in too much pain,’ coach Sicco Janmaat told reporters on Sunday evening.
Kramer said in a press statement that he hopes to be free of the complaint by the end of the year. ‘Taking part in races will not help that process,’ he said. ‘I am now going to focus on the Dutch distance championships at the end of December.’
— Team Jumbo Schaatsen (@TeamJumbo_ice) November 18, 2018
NOS analyst and former skating champion Erben Wennemars said Kramer must take the time to get fully fit. ‘He has had back problems for years, and they keep coming back,’ Wennemars said. ‘He must now allow his body to recover.’
Kramer, the current 5,000 metre Olympic champion, has nine world allround titles to his name but lost that title last year.
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