Saturday 06 March 2021

Dutch skaters win all four titles at European allround and sprint championships

Jutta Leerdam on her way to the title. Photo: Vincent Jannick ANP

Dutch speed skaters took eight of the 12 medals at this weekend’s European speed skating championships at the Thialf stadium in Heerenveen, including all four golds and three of the silvers.

Antoinette de Jonge won gold in the women’s allround event, which involves races over 500m, 1,500m, 3km and 5km, and Irene Schouten took the silver.

World title holder Patrick Roest won the men’s allround competition with Marcel Bosker in silver position. The men’s event has races of 500m, 1,500m, 5km and 10km.

In the sprint event, Jutta Leerdam took gold while debutant Femke Kok just missed out on the silver medal to take bronze. Thomas Krol won the men’s sprint title and Hein Otterspeer the silver.

The European sprint and allround events are the first international skating tournaments of the season and all the skaters had to provide a negative coronavirus test before being allowed to take part.

The International Skating Union decided last year to stage all the events in Heerenveen to form a bubble for skaters and officials in the international competitions.

Next on the calendar are the two World Cup events and the World distance championships which take place on the final two weekends in January and second weekend in February.

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