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Oslo, Almaty and Beijing confirmed as 2022 Winter Olympic Ca

Oslo, Almaty and Beijing confirmed as 2022 Winter Olympic Ca

The race to host the 2022 Olympic Winter Games has taken significant step forward after the International Olympic Committee unanimously agreed t...

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History

It is believed that skates were developed around 3000 years ago in Scandinavia from mankind’s need to travel along frozen waterways, canals and lakes. Although the Netherlands is the birthplace of speed skating, the first known skating competition is thought to have been a 15-metre race that took place in England on February 4, 1763.

Competitions sprung up across the northern part of Europe shortly thereafter, but the first official speed skating events were not held until 1863 in Oslo, Norway.

In 1889, the Netherlands hosted the first World Championships, bringing together the Dutch, Russians, Americans and English. The International Skating Union (ISU) was founded in 1892 in Scheveningen, Netherlands, and has governed speed skating since its inception.

Olympic History

Long track speed skating, known colloquially as “speed skating” made its debut on the Olympic program at the first Games at Chamonix 1924 and has remained on the program ever since. All the early events, the 500m, 1500m, 5000m and 10,000m were for men. Women’s events were added to the program at the 1960 Games in Squaw Valley.

At the first Games there was also an event called the “omnium” which did not involve a competition, but rather awarded a title to the skater with the best overall results in the four events. This event was dropped after the Chamonix Games. A men’s 1000m was added at Innsbruck 1976.

Technical

There are 12 speed skating events (sometimes referred to as long track speed skating) on the Olympic program – six for men and six for women. Team Pursuit events for Men and for Women were introduced at the Turin Games in 2006.

500 metres

The 500 is the only Olympic event in which the skaters skate two races, with the final results based on the total time of the two races. This all-out sprint begins with an even start and consists of one and a quarter laps around the oval, with the finish line at the end of the straight.

1000 metres

This two-and-a-half-lap race begins in a staggered start and finishes in the middle of the straight.

1500 metres

Beginning with a staggered start, the skating pair completes three and three-quarter laps around the oval and crosses the finish line at the end of the straight.

3000 metres

This race is unique to women and consists of seven and a half laps around the oval, with the finish line at the end of the straight. The race begins with the pair lined up in a staggered start.

5000 metres

Part of the men’s and women’s program, the 5000 is speed skating’s version of the marathon for women. The race begins with a staggered start and consists of 12 1/2 laps, with the finish line at the end of the straight.

10,000 metres

A true test of endurance, the men’s marathon consists of 25 laps around the oval, with the finish line at the end of the straight. The race begins with the pair lined up side-by-side in separate lanes

equipment

Clothing

Skaters wear gloves and tight fitting, all in one aerodynamic suits with an integral hood. The clothing is designed to offer the least possible wind drag The skater starting on the outside lane wears a red armband and the skater starting in the inside lane wears a white armband.

 

Skates

Skates for speed skaters have long straight blades, longer than their figure skating and ice hockey counterparts, reaching up to 46cm long. The boot does not come up over the ankle, allowing flexibility of movement. The blade is only 1mm thick.

rules

Team Pursuit

Organised with a set of elimination phases so that the final race will be a deciding race for the Gold and Silver medals. While racing a team consists of 3 athletes but a country may compose their pursuit team differently for the different rounds included in the event. A maximum of five different skaters for the complete set of races can be used. Only those who have raced will be eligible for a medal.

The event starts with preliminary “time trials” to establish a ranking for the teams as a basis for the heats in the elimination phase (the quarter-finals). A team is “overtaken” when its third member is passed by the third member of the other team. Competitors change lanes on the back straight every lap. Skaters in the outer lane have the right of way when crossing over.

Our Results

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Chamonix 1924
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St Moritz 1928
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St Moritz 1948
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Oslo 1952
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Squaw Valley 1960
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Innsbruck 1964
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Grenoble 1968
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Sapporo 1972
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Innsbruck 1976
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Lake Placid 1980
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Calgary 1988
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Albertville 1992
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