Oscar Mathisen
Speedskating - Oscar Diary

An end and a beginning

In the figure skating World Championship for ladies that took place a 100 years ago today in heavy snowfall, international speedskating races took place in the intervals, with the following results:
Sørensen, from
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1500 m
1.Thomas Bohrer.Austria      2.30,6
2.Ejnar Sørensen.Denmark     2.33,6
3.Trygve Christiansen.Norway 2.36,6
4.Max Kniel.Switzerland      2.56,8

10000 m
1.Sørensen     18.59,0 pb
2.Bohrer       19.18,6
3.Christiansen 19.54,4 pb
4.Kniel        20.43,6 pb 
The figure skating championship was won by Opika von Méray Horvath from Hungary, who skated her figures the prettiest in her long fur coat and pleased the judges most. She was well ahead of the other contestants, Grennhough Smith, Phyllis Johnson og Gwendolyn Lycett, all Britons.

Ejnar Sørensen probably was quite as happy as Opika, having won the 10000m race and breaking the 19 minute line, under suboptimal conditions and defeating his famous Austrian pairmate Bohrer. Now he looked forward to the World Championship at Klagenfurt next weekend. He sure had no reason to think this would be the last race of his career, oh no. But he had felt a bit sore-throated after the long and hard race. A cold now would be rather inconvenient, he thought.

In Stockholm, another international meet was arranged with the newly dethroned Norwegian champion Henning Olsen as the only foreign participant. The weather this Sunday was ideal, with cold, clear air and the sun shining from a cloudless sky. Unlike yesterday the locals now flocked around the track on Hammarby sjö, every sporty Stockholmer not busy with his own skating exploits or ice sailing voyage was present. There was a bit of a cold wind, but when one of your favourites did well in his pair it helped rather well. The audience got lively in some of the more well-fought pairs and here and there an ear or foot went missing if we are to believe the accounts.

In the 1500 m, Olsen and the home favourite Otto Andersson were paired again, like in yesterday’s 5000m. The Swede attacked from the start and took the lead. Olsen was not prepared to yield what he thought of as his best distance, and prepared a counter-attack, but lost his footing on a straight and fell. The damage was irrepairable and Andersson got his 2nd distance win.
1500 m
1.Otto Andersson  2.33,1
2.Jean Pettersson 2.34,2 eq. lowland pb
3.Ernst Cederlöf  2.34,9 pb
4.Albert Berglund 2.40,5
5.Henning Olsen   2.41,6fell
6.Henrik Morén    2.42,4 pb
7.Alexis Ekström  2.42,5 pb
8.Henning Westin  2.43,5 pb
Sven Lundgren     2.47,9
In the10000 m, the main rivals met again. They skated side by side for a few laps, but soon the Norwegian started to trail, to the loud merriment of the audience, and at the end he was half a lap behind. In another pair, Cederlöf and Jean Pettersson had a duel with a similar outcome, and when the times were read, it turned out that Cederlöf had beaten the “Nordbagge” as well! The Swedes commented that they probably never had had a better speedskating team, and looked hopefully forward to the European Championship in Stockholm the week after the Worlds.
Results 10000m
1.Andersson  19.05,2
2.Cederlöf   19.08,9 pb
3.Olsen      19.26,7
4.Pettersson 19.28,9
5.Morén      19.34,0 pb
In Horten the fine wintry weather was prevalent, too, and more good times as well as two new close and exciting Lundgreen-Johannessen duels were witnessed by the eager home audience. In the 1500m it was close all the way, and with a margin of only a 10th of a second, Lundgreen denied his pairmate the chance of three distance wins and thus the 1st prize overall.
150 m
1.Trygve Lundgreen         2.30,5
2.Stener Johannessen       2.30,6 pb
3.Aksel Mathiesen          2.36,5 pb
4.Magnus Herseth           2.37,9
5.Thoralf Thoresen         2.39,0
6.Ole Kristian Kristiansen 2.46,0 eq. pb
In the interval, Ragnvald Mathiesen won a junior 500m in 47,3, also setting a pb, and then it was time for the final 5000. Here, Herseth met Thoresen, who stopped after 7 laps, requiring his pairmate to finish alone in 10.02,4. Not the best entertainment.
Mathiesen was paired with the home skater Kristiansen, who was praised for his strong staying power, but not for his technique. Still he hung on to the KSK skater for half the race to the amusement of his fellow Hortensers, then had to give way.
Johannessen and Lundgreen weren’t close to any record in their pair, and after the outcome of the 1500m, the overall prize was uncontestably Lundgreen’s. Still they made another close and entertaining race, alternating for the lead from lap to lap. In the 3rd to last lap, yesterday’s record man opened a gap that Lundgreen managed to close in the next one. But the final burst of Johannessen he could not withstand.
51,5-1.34-2.18-3.02-3.47  -4.32-5.18-6.03,5-6.48,5-7.32,5-8.17  -8.59,9
52  -1.35-2.17-3.02-3.46,5-4.31-5.18-6.03  -6.48  -7.34  -8.17,5-9.02,5
With this strong time Johannessen joined the 8-minute-and-something club, which at the time counted only 15 individuals apart from him. He also jumped past the former European Champion Johan Vikander in Adelskalenderen and into 22nd place. But the best achievement of these two strong long distance skaters was a weekend the Horten audience would not soon forget, providing priceless goodwill for skating in the town.

One of the spectators on the stands enjoying the display was an immigrant from Trondheim, Kristian by name. He had participated in a meet arranged January 29th the year before, on a tiny rink clocking an unremarkable and currently unknown time in a modest position on the lists. But now a club had been formed, a proper rink laid out and these two days he had seen what a spectacle skating truly could be at its best. Hm, maybe this might be something for him to go for? All the top skaters in Norway so far had been from Hamar, Kristiania or Trondhjem, but Horten, the navy town, also was an important one, the 5th largest in the country with its 10000 inhabitants, so why not?
Results 5000m
1.Johannessen 8.59,9 pb
2.Lundgreen   9.02,5
3.Mathiesen   9.26,0
4.Kristiansen 9.34,5 pb
5.Herseth    10.02,4 pb
Thoresen dnf

1.Lundgreen    6 points
2.Johannessen  8
3.Mathiesen   11
4.Kristiansen 15
From the Horten meet. Photo collage from Norsk Idrætsblad.
Lundgreen (left) and Johannessen on each side. In the middle 4 juniors,
left to right: Gunerius Schou, Ragnvald Mathiesen, Thorolf Hansen, and Trygve Aulie.