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Speed skating is a sport where competitors are timed to skate a certain distance on an oval track.. Skaters are then ranked according to their time.
In the begining, over 1000 years ago, men of Scandinavia and the Netherlands tied animal bones to their boots and skated across frozen lakes and rivers. In 1592 the first iron blades were invented by a Scotsman. The iron blade helped the popularity of speed skating grow faster. In 1763 the world's first organized speed skating race was held in England. The race track covered a distance of 24 km. The sport soon found it's way to North America, where in 1850 a longer,lighter sharper blade was invented.(
Speed skating has been along with the Winter Olympics since the very beging in 1924 held in Chamonix, France, but back then only men were competing. Later in 1960, a women's category was added to speed skating. Since the begining of speed skating in the winter olympics, Canadian athletes have brought home a total 28 medals. In those 28 medals 6 were Gold, 10 were Silver and 12 were Bronze. Canada's current top speed skater right now is Cindy Klassen. She has won a total of 6 olympic medal, 5 of which she walked away with from the last Winter Olympic Games who were held in Turin. (
Equipment needed for Speed Skating
, speed skaters in the inner alley wear a white armband and skaters in the outter alley wear a red armband.
they wear glasses to protect their eyes from the wind and ice chips and some have tinted lenses to minimize the glare.
, they have longer blades to skate faster. (
, the heel of the blade isn't atached to the boot so the blade is on the is longer and it increases the pushing power of the skater.
, the skaters must wear skin-tight racing suits with hoods tu reduce the air ressistance.
Short track speed skating equipment:
, skaters must wear gloves to protect there hands from the blades when they go around a curve because they put their hand on the ice to maintain their balant.
, they wear glasses to protect their eyes from the wind and ice chips also so have tinted lenses to minimize the glare.
, they were knee, shin and neck guards to protect themselves from the skater in front of them.
, they have helments to protect their heads from crashes with other skaters and with the ice and the side walls.
, competitors in speed skating must wear skin-tight racing suits to reduce wind resistance.
Events in the Olympics
There are many defirent types of speed skating events they will be held at
the Richmond Olympic Oval in Vancouver.
The following people are Canadian atheletes who will be competing in short track speed skating. Guillaume Bastille, Charles Hamelin, François Hamelin, Olivier Jean and François-Louis Tremblay. In the women's competition for short track speed skating the Canadian atheletes competing are: Jessica Greg, Valérie Maltais, Kalyna Roberge, Marianne St-Gelais and Tania Vicent. The men competeing in long track speed skating are; Michael Ireland, Vincent Labrie, Lucas Makowsky, Denny Morrison, Muncef Ouardi, Kyle Parrott, François-Olivier Roberge and Jeremy Wotherspoon. The women competing in long track speed skating are; Kristina Groves, Clara Hughes, Cindy Klassen and Tamara Oudenaarden. (
Cindy Klassen, Canada's top long track speed skater. Cindy was born on august 12,1979 in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Klassen takes place in the 1000m, 1500m, 3000m, 5000m, and team pursuit events. She is part of the Winnipeg Speed Skating club and is coached by Michael Crowe. Cindy Klassen's speciality is the 1500m race. This Canadian athelete has been the first to win 5 medals at one Olympic Game. She has won a total of 6 Olympic medals, Nine career medals at the World Single Distance Championships, 6 career medals at the World Allround Championships and since Dec 10, 2008 she is the holder of the world records for ladies' 1000m with a
time of 1:13.11 the 1500m with 1:51.79 and also the 3000m who was completed in 3:53.34. This year, Cindy will be competing in the 2010 Winter Olympic Games held in Vancouver, Canada. We will be wishing her good luck as well as to all the other Canadian athelets competing in this years Olympic Games. (
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