N’tab won the first moto on Saturday with a time of 34.55. With that he took his fourth World Cup victory. He achieved his last victory in the World Cup circuit almost four years ago. Velema finished eleventh on Saturday in 34.89. The 27-year-old sprinter won a medal in the World Cup circuit for the first time in Heerenveen.
Ronald Mulder ended in fifth place on Sunday with a time of 34.747. He missed the podium by a split second. Hein Otterspeer was tenth fastest: 34.84.
World record holder Pavel Kulizhnikov and former world champion Kai Verbij had to drive in the B division. Both went down on the first 500 meters of the skating weekend in Thialf on Saturday. Kulizhnikov finished first on Sunday in 34.79, Verbij finished second in 35.07.
N’tab was dissatisfied with the conditions in the empty Thialf. “I mainly drove it safe. The ice was bad after the women’s race and therefore very dangerous for us as sprinters. We risk our lives by flying around corners at 60 kilometers per hour, but it was certainly no coincidence that there were so many falls today. There should have been a mopping up between the races for women and men. We will have to look for fast ice, which is also safe and that certainly includes mopping between matches. ”
Track record Roest at 5000 meters
Patrick Roest won the 5000 meters with an impressive track record of 6.05.14 minutes. The 25-year-old skater from Jumbo-Visma thus set an unofficial world record on a lowland track. No one in empty Thialf could come close to him.
Sven Kramer, three-time Olympic champion in the 5000 meters, took silver with a time of 6.11.80. That was his best season for him. He was slightly faster than the Russian Sergei Trofimov, who took bronze with 6.11.94. Jorrit Bergsma came in fifth with 6.14.83.
Ⓒ Timing Imaging
For Roest it was his seventh World Cup victory in the 5000 meters. In comparison, his 34-year-old teammate Kramer has 34 World Cup victories at this distance. Roest has won all his races in the 5000 meters so far this season. At the end of December he also improved the track record with a time of 6.08.21 in Thialf.
In the B-division Marcel Bosker rode in quartet form, with four drivers on the track, the second fastest time: 6.09.71. He was slightly slower than the Norwegian Hallgeir Engebraten (6.09.21). Marwin Talsma finished fourth with a personal best of 6.13.18.
Roest looked at the NOS with a satisfied feeling back to his winning race. “The legs are only getting stronger and that is also because we have trained well in recent weeks. I wanted to try something in this race, because the air pressure was low and the ice slid wonderfully for the long distances. I got into my rhythm quickly and easily, so I did laps of 28 early. Fortunately I was able to keep that up until the end. ”
Thomas Krol continues to string the victories together. The 28-year-old Jumbo-Visma rider also won the 1000 meters in Thialf. The day before, he was also the best in the 1500 meters. Krol, who surprisingly crowned himself as European sprint champion last weekend, triumphed on the kilometer in a time of 1.07.48. His opponent and teammate Verbij set the second fastest time: 1.07.57.
The dreaded Kulizhnikov, world record holder in the 500 and 1000 meters, had to settle for bronze: 1.07.63. He became infected with the corona virus in December and is not quite back to his old level. Otterspeer was fifth fastest (1.08.23), followed by Wesly Dijs (1.08.43) and N’tab: 1.08.47. Olympic champion Kjeld Nuis was unable to qualify for the international tournaments in the 1000 meters at the end of December.
For Krol it was his fourth gold medal in the 1000 meters in the World Cup circuit. Earlier this season he also won the Dutch titles in the 1000 and 1500 meters. “Profit is profit, but this victory had to come from my toes”, Krol admitted at the NOS. “It was a fantastic battle between two friends until the finish. The fact that I’ve now beaten Kulizhnikov makes this victory even more beautiful. It is always exciting when he competes and it had been a while since I had beaten him. ”
Krol did not find it so strange that the Netherlands sold gold, silver and bronze at the first World Cup weekend. “We switched here very quickly when it turned out that a normal season was not possible due to the corona virus. Our calendar was completely overhauled and rearranged, leaving us no time to sit back. We had to be and stay sharp right away and that is now reflected in our results. ”
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