Ter Mors operating at double speed
At Sochi 2014, the Netherlands’ Jorien Ter Mors will be aiming to glide effortlessly between the Iceberg Skating Palace and the Adler Arena, as the first speed skater in history to compete in both the short and long track at an Olympic Winter Games.
The 24-year-old short-track specialist first tried her hand on the long track back in 2012 in order to work on her physical conditioning, but in doing so realised she had the potential to compete at the top level on the oval rink. She went on to enjoy success in a number of ISU long track competitions.
Most notably, at the World Cup event in Berlin (GER) in December 2013, she set a course record of 1:54.88 in the 1,500m, her favourite long-track distance.
“I know that I skated fast while trying to maintain a regular rhythm, and that enabled me to produce a great time,” she said after that victory. “I’m focusing on my technique and I can see that I still have room for improvement. I love what I do, whether it is on the long or short track.”
That all-consuming passion for her sport allied with her hunger to keep improving should stand her in good stead as she prepares for an incredible trailblazing campaign at Sochi 2014.
European clean sweep in 2014
At Vancouver 2010, the Enschede-born skater finished 23rd in the 500m short-track, and was part of the Dutch team that came fourth in the short-track 3,000m relay.
Then in 2012 at the Europeans in Mlada Boleslav (CZE), she took the 1,000m title, and followed up with a brace of silvers in the 1,500m and 3,000m.
The best was still to come. On 19 January 2014 in Dresden (GER), Ter Mors became the first female Dutch skater to claim the all-around crown at the European Short-Track Speed Skating Championships, having taken gold in the 1,500m, 3,000m and 3,000m relay, and a silver in the 1,000m.
In Sochi, she will face the busiest schedule ever undertaken by a speed skater at the Olympic Winter Games, as she looks to secure victories in four short track events (500m, 1,000m, 1,500m and relay) and two in the speed skating (1,500m and team pursuit).
If all goes to plan, on 21 February she will, quite literally have to get her skates on, with a quarter-final in the team pursuit at the Adler Arena in the morning, before having to switch to the Iceberg Skating Palace in the evening for the final of the 1,000m.