Wolfega – Irene Scouten’s snowboarding season can no longer be mistaken. This winter, a skater from Hoogkarspel won an astonishing silver at the European Allround Championships, ruled in the group start again and became champion of the Netherlands in many distances. The world championships kick off Thursday in 28-year-old Heerenveen Schotten, the dessert of the ski season.
Because of the “ice-skating bubble”, Scotton has been staying at a hotel in Wolvega, Friesland for weeks. “I only see the hotel and it’s damaged these days,” Scotton said in a conversation. NH Sport. “It’s tough. But whether I’m here or in Hoogkarspel, there’s nothing to do there either.” Fortunately, her performance on the track is not affected. In contrast, in bubble time, Scotten clinched one medal after another in speed skating on a long track.
With the marathon season canceled due to the Coronavirus pandemic, Scotten has focused on long-track competitions this season. “Of course I really liked this season and the results are good too. Of course I modified my training and I am happy that each race went better. I always look at everything at every distance. If I do a good race I am satisfied. If someone else turns out to be faster then so be it.” According to a West Friesland skier.
“If I don’t get gold in the group start, it will be a shame. This is really a distance.”
Schüten, who was born in Andijk, became the champion of the Netherlands in the 3 and 5 km distance this year, and surprisingly came second during the European Championships in all respects. During the upcoming World Championship distances from Thursday 11 to Sunday 14 February, Schouten is a medal candidate in several fields. “If I don’t get gold in the group start, that will be a cause for concern,” says Scotten, who dominates the season in this segment. “That’s the distance. I’m always nervous before the start. That’s also the nice thing about that game. At a distance of 3 kilometers, for example, it’s different. Then you drive on your own and you can only blame yourself when things go wrong.”
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Wait a long time for the first time
In addition to the group start, 3 and 5 km, Schouten will also be out on the team hunt this week in Thialf. A part where it only debuted in January, but has been keen on participating for years. “I often told the national coach that I wanted to follow the team. And when the time came I could start, I could finally show myself. We’ve also set a record for a low-ground track, so maybe it doesn’t quite come as it’s surprising that it is done. Now my choice again, “says Scotten happily.
“Suppose there’s an Elfstedentocht this weekend, then I would cancel a space to participate in it”
Lots of chances to get the medal for Schouten, who closely watches weather reports from her hotel room. Because of the winter weather there are reports there may be Marathons after all On natural ice in the coming days. “A ski marathon is always something special to me. Of course I feel itchy when out on the ice with this weather, but that is simply not possible now. I don’t think so, but what if there is an eleven city tour? Weekend ?, then I was.” Space to share was canceled, “Shoten said jokingly.
Despite the Eleven Memorial Fever, it’s clear that Schouten’s focus is entirely on the upcoming World Championship distances. Four parts and maybe four medals? “Mentally, it would be difficult to recharge myself over and over for a distance. I was really thrown into the rear for the first time. Of course I always go gold, but I just hope I do a really good ride and then take a look. Every distance.”
Irene Scouten’s program at the World Travel Championship
Thursday 11 February
2.50 m: 3.000 meters
Friday 12 February
3.10 pm: Collective pursuit
Saturday 13 February
1.45 pm: Collective start (semi-final)
4.55 pm: Collective start (final)
Sunday 14 February
2:28 pm: 5.000 meters