Tuesday, February 14, 2006

A beautiful picture of a Dutch speedskater, Sven Kramer. Yesterday evening I was unable, for technical reasons, to post the picture. As I wrote before, I am not a real sportsfan, but I remember me and my whole family sitting whole weekends in front of the television to watch athletes such as Hilbert van der Duim, Hein Vergeer, Leo Visser, Bart Veldkamp, Yvonne van Gennip and others win gold and silver medals at European and World Championships and the Olympics. The Dutch have always 'produced' wonderful swimmers and speedskaters, both men and women, and whenever one of them wins an Olympic medal I feel a strange and irrational kind of pride, no matter how far I live from Holland and now matter how little interest I have in sports. On Saturday Sven Kramer earned the silver medal during the 5000 meter competition, the next day Ireen Wuest won the gold medal and Renate Groenewold the silver medal in the women's 3000 meter competition. A very impressive gesture was made yesterday by the American speedskater Joey Cheek, who won the 500 meter competition. He said he wanted to give a meaning to the press conference that was held in honor of his winning the gold medal and told that he donated his prize money ( 25.000 Euro ) to Right to Play, an organization initiated by Johan Olav Koss, a Norvegian former - and very successful - speedskater. The organization aims at 'creating a healthier and safer world for children through the power of sport and play'. Cheek said his money will be donated to a project for children who fled Darfur. Kol HaKavod!
PS: Just read that Ireen Wuest will put up for auction the suit that she wore during her golden race. The proceeds will also be donated to Right to Play.

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