Bronze for Kooij at world championships U23
Olav Kooij has won the bronze medal at the world championship U23. The nineteen-...
Multiple Olympic champion Sven Kramer has officially made his decision. The 33-year-old speed skater has signed a new contract with Team Jumbo-Visma that will keep him tied to the team for the next two seasons.
"I am very pleased to stay with Team Jumbo-Visma for the next two years", Kramer said. "Speed skating is still something that makes me really happy, so I do not see a reason to retire. Of course, I have already had a great career, but I am still super motivated to accomplish more goals."
"Besides that, I also like the fact that we are still growing as a team. With the speed skating and cycling team we have a unique project and in my opinion our organization is becoming more mature every single day. I am looking forward to the next two years and I am going to give it everything I have got."
Last season Kramer seized silver in the men’s 5,000-meter race at the ISU World Single Distance Championships in Salt Lake City, United States. In the men’s Team Pursuit, he won a gold medal along with Douwe de Vries and Marcel Bosker, crossing the line in a new world record of 3:34.67 (was 3:35.60, set by Kramer, Jan Blokhuijsen and Koen Verweij in 2013).
A month earlier, Kramer had already won a silver medal in the men’s 5000-meter race at the European Championships at Thialf, Heerenveen. Along with Bosker and Patrick Roest he also managed to clinch the European title in the Team Pursuit. At the World Allround Championships, the 33-year-old speed skater was forced to withdraw, due to personal reasons.
"My season did not start the way I wanted it to. But in the end, I still accomplished some great things", Kramer said. "After such a rough start of the season it is not bad to finish just 0.5 seconds behind the winner at the World Single Distance Championships. The next Winter Olympics will take place in 2022, so anything is possible. It would be great to end my career after winning another Olympic gold medal."
Coach Jac Orie is pleased with the fact that the cooperation with Kramer will be extended. "Kramer is a world-class athlete and I really like it that we will be working together for another two seasons. If we manage to keep him fit, I am sure he should be able to accomplish some great things."
Picture: Neeke Wassenbergh-Smit