Sunday, November 30, 2008

Essent Cup 5 in Utretch

Written by T Dobbin

Last night was the fifth race in the Essent Cup held for the first time in Utretch. The ice was good last night because the outside air temperature was cold and kept the ice from breaking up too much.

The ladies race was first in the schedule starting at 18:30. Elma de Vries from DSB Bank controlled the race and skated a very strong race for her team mate who is in the gold Maria Sterk. Maria Sterk (DSB Bank) had enough points during the race to keep the gold jersey and in the sprint finish it was Carla Zielman from Steenwijkerwold Hoolwerf Heiwerken who out sprinted Chris Witty Landjuweel for the race victory.

Ladies Marathon Results
1st Carla Zielman (Steenwijkerwold Hoolwerf Heiwerken)
2nd Chris Witty (Landjuweel)
3rd Andrea Sikkema (Van der Wiel)
4th Lucy Hutten-Witteman (Wittmeman Tuinen/Groenrijk)
5th Helen van Goozen (Frisia Financieringen)

The A grade men started at 19:30 and within the first 10 laps there were already approximately two to three breakaways. It was a very hard race with alot of attacking and with every 20 laps the sprint points. With approximately 40 laps to go Jan Maarten Heideman (DSB Bank) made a very strong attack with approximately eight other skaters including the sprinter Arjan Stroetinga (BAM). This breakaway tried to work to get away for the first 10 laps together but in the end there was only three skaters that stayed off the front and the rest of the skaters grouped back with the peleton. The three skaters out front working hard were Jan Maarten Heideman (DSB Bank), Karlo Timmerman (Equipe renault Eco2) and a skater from BCT Schaatsteam. It wasn't until the final sprint for elimination Jan Maarten Heideman (DSB Bank) was left out front solo to qualify for the final 20 and after this sprint re-grouped with the peleton.

In the peleton the sprint went on early for the final 20 sprint/elimination. DSB Bank grouped together at the front but BAM came around the outside to try to bring back Jan Maarten Heideman (DSB Bank) this boxed DSB Bank on the inside and they had to move quickly. Shane Dobbin (DSB Bank) racing like he knows how to from his inline career at the front held good position throughout the sprint. Ingmar Berga (DSB Bank) got caught up in approximately 15th to 20th position on the outside in a crash of 6 skaters and ended up under the barrier in the wall. Jens Zwitser (DSB Bank) stayed towards the front and three out of the four DSB Bank's skaters made it through to the final 20 laps.

It was very unlucky for DSB because as Shane Dobbin was off the front trying to attack his team mate Jan Maarten Heideman crashed going through a corner and DSB Bank had no one left for the sprint finish. In the final sprint BAM Schaatsteam lead out the sprint with Nefit in behind and it was once again Arjan Stroetinga (BAM Schaatsteam) that crossed the line just ahead of Sjoerd Huisman (Nefit) for the victory.

Men's A Grade Marathon Results
1st Arjan Stroetinga (BAM)
2nd Sjoerd Huisman (Nefit)
3rd Cedric Michaud (Nefit)
4th Jan van Loon (Equipe Renault Eco2)
5th Roy Boeve (Safan)
6th Bob de Vried (BAM)
7th Douwe de Vries (Adformatie)
8th Pieter Jan van Eck (Safan)
9th Bart de Vries (Schuurman Schoenen)
10th Jochem Uithoven (BCT)
11th Joost Juffermans (TNT Express)
12th Jens Zwitser (DSB Bank)
13th Miel Rozendaal (PE People)
14th Shane Dobbin (DSB Bank)
15th Sandor Stuut (Vlasman)

To View the full A grade marathon go to

The final event of the night was the first division marathon. It was a spectacular event for the 19 year old New Zealander Dj Nation who was patient through the race waiting for the right move.

Throughout the race it was fast and hard. In the first division the race is always hard because everyone wants to try to breakaway and when there is no breakaway there is the sprint for the sprint point classment. Rob Hadders from BAM raced in the first division in Utretch where he skated the race at the front controlling the breakaways with the other A grade skater Lars Hoogenboom from TNT Express.

The sprint for the top 20 started and Dj Nation from New Zealand put himself into good position at the front on the right skaters. Dj made the 20 skaters with ease and after this sprint finished there was an attack from another first division skater and no one would commit to chase. At the 15 to go mark, Dj Nation from New Zealand made his move right at the right time and went off the front to chase solo while the rest of the peleton would not to commit to chase. Dj Nation skated a hard race catching Nick Uithoven who was off the front working together to take a lap on the peleton and confirm their final sprint with just 2 skaters.

The A grade skaters in the race left the chase to late to catch the two escapees and ended up getting the bell for their final sprint with six laps remaining. Crossing the line for third was erwin Mesu from Gibo Beka and still the final two skaters had to race the last 5 laps for victory.

Dj Nation took advantage of the peleton sprint and got on the back of the peleton to break away from his escapee Nick Uithoven and ended up crossing the line solo for the race victory and his first podium for the season.

First Division Marathon
1st Dj Nation
2nd Nick Uithoven
3rd Erwin Mesu (Gibo Beka)
4th Andre Withaar (Vlasman)
5th Rob Hadders (BAM)

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