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Skating team Team Jumbo-Visma has renegotiated the contracts of Kjeld Nuis and Patrick Roest and extended them until 2023 and 2022 respectively. The formation of success coach Jac Orie has signed two of his leaders until at least the Winter Olympics of Beijing 2022.
Nuis is the double Olympic and World Champion at the 1,000 and 1,500 meters. In the past season, the born South-Hollander caused a stir by improving both the world record at the 1,000 and the 1,500 meters in Salt Lake City during the World Cup Final.
"I'm very happy to stay with Team Jumbo-Visma for the next 3.5 years", Nuis says. "I think I'm on the right track with this team and I know how to improve every year. Looking to the future, I don't see a better outfit in this sport than this one."
That's why the 29-year-old world champion wanted to sign for the longer term. "It provides a lot of certainty to sign for so many years now and to know that you have a good and warm home", he says. "Besides that, I don't feel like being busy anymore with what comes next in an Olympic season. I’m good where I am."
His teammate Roest is the two-time allround world champion. The 23-year-old skater from the Dutch town of Lekkerkerk was crowned the world’s best allrounder in Amsterdam in 2018 and prolonged that title 12 months later in Calgary. At the Winter Olympics of PyeongChang he finished second at the 1,500 meters, behind Nuis.
"I have a very good feeling about the team", Roest explains. "I've shown that during the first training sessions. The shape is good, and I also owe that to the team. That’s why I’m very happy that I was able to extend my contract with Team Jumbo-Visma until the Olympic Games."
The fact that the resident of South-Holland has clarity for the coming years, even before the start of the new season, gives him peace of mind. "That's absolutely positive”, he says. "With the team we have now, you know beautiful things can happen. It’s very good to be part of it."
Coach Orie is pleased with the fact that the cooperation with Nuis and Roest will be extended. "Kjeld and Patrick are two absolute world champions who have performed at a constant level in recent years”, the citizen of The Hague says. "Kjeld is someone who has not only delivered top performances in the past period, but also plays an important role within the team. He always creates a good atmosphere, but as soon as the training starts, he’s also super focused – every day. That’s an explanation for his many successes."
The three-time Coach of the Year also applauds the new agreement with Roest: "Patrick has developed strongly in recent years. And if you look at his results during our training camp in Inzell, he seems to be on track to continue in that direction. It’s great that he already combines a 6:08 at the 5 kilometers with a 1:44 at the 1,500 meters. And I’m convinced there’s still a lot of potential."
The contract extensions of Nuis and Roest were announced on Wednesday afternoon during the busy team presentation of Team Jumbo-Visma. There, Sven Kramer asserted that he’s recovering well from the knee injury he sustained when he was hit by a car. However, it is still uncertain whether he will be able to participate in the World Cup Qualifying Tournament (WCQT).
This event will take place from 1 to 3 November in Thialf and is the first showdown of the 2019/2020 season for Team Jumbo-Visma. In the women’s branch of the formation, the main focus will be on the Olympic champion Carlijn Achtereekte and European allround champion Antoinette de Jong.
Achtereekte completed 'her' 3,000 meters in 4:01 during training races in Inzell and proved to be in good shape. "I am very happy with this time", the Olympic champion says. "The last few years I have had trouble starting a season well. The fact that I’m already riding so well, gives me a lot of confidence."
De Jong clocked a time of 4:02 at the 3 kilometers and combined this with a 1:56 at the 1,500 meters. "I wanted to keep skating technically well, but I wasn't aggressive enough anymore", she analyzed her race. "However, for now I’m satisfied with a time of 1:56.49. I’m convinced that I’ve laid a good foundation for the WCQT."
Photo: Stephan Tellier