Oscar Mathisen
Speedskating - Oscar Diary

First Ippolitov duel

A hundred years ago today the wind blew still strongly from the north in Trondhjem city and in addition the snow fell such that you couldn’t see from one side of the track at Øen Stadion, where the international skating meet was held, to the other. Any records thus were out of the question. But the ice still was hard and smooth, and there was someone there who knew how to nurse it.

Unfortunately I don’t have any account nor the starting list of the 1500m, which started at 12:15, but very probably the pairs were like the 10000m, according to the practice at the time. Thus, Andersson would meet Johannessen, a pair he won with a rather substantial difference. But the times were as expected from the weather, 2.33,4 and 2.34,9. Ippolitov met Frang again, and surprised by equalling his pb at 2.25,4, only 2/10 behind the rink record of Sæterhaug, while Frang smashed his pb at 2.29,4, jumping to 55th place in Adelskalenderen and to 26th place in the 1500m all-time list as well as 16th place in the lowland all-time list. Hm, maybe the conditions weren’t that bad after all? And they couldn’t have been, because the rink record holder, who worked diligently to keep up with the world record holder in the remaining pair, suffered hard at the end and didn’t finish better than 2.28,5, while Oscar to everybody’s surprise as well as his own again equalled his world record from Davos!

1.Oscar Mathisen     2.20,6 RR eq.WR
2.Vasilij Ippolitov  2.25,4 eq.pb
3.Martin Sæterhaug   2.28,5
4.Bjarne Frang       2.29,4 pb
5.Otto Andersson     2.33,4
6.Stener Johannessen 2.34,9
1.Oscar Mathisen      3
2.Vasilij Ippolitov   7
3.Martin Sæterhaug    9
4.Stener Johannessen 11

First pair in the 5000m was the big one, Oscar Mathisen and Vasilij Ippolitov, who probably had the first inner start. Finally they were to meet. The spectators on the stands rubbed their hands in anticipation. The Russian was the more aggressive from the start, holding a lead until 1000m. Then Oscar set in an attack with a 40 lap and took over the lead. But Ippolitov replied with a 40 of his own. The pace was devastating, a pure 1500m speed. He kept his lead for two laps when Oscar again attacked with a 40. At 2600m they were side by side, but next, Oscar was 10 meters ahead, and now he slowly pulled away. When he finished to tremendous applause the Russian not only had lost his rink record, Oscar had beaten his pb from Davos as well, and clocked 8.39,9, only 3/10 from the national record of Einar Halvorsen from 1894 and only 2 seconds more from Jaap Eden’s ‘untouchable’ world record from the same year and event. Thought-provoking!

Mathisen  68-1.49-2.29-3.11-3.52-4.32-5.14-5.54-6.36-7.17-7.59-8.39,9
Ippolitov 67-1.48-2.30-3.10-3.51-4.32-5.15-5.56-6.38-7.20-8.02-8.43,9

2nd pair was Frang and Andersson. The Swede didn’t quite show his old strength here and soon gave away his initiative so that Frang could register a rare win in a longer distance.

Frang     73-1.56-2.40-3.24-4.10-4.56-5.43-6.30-7.19-8.07-8.51-9.40,7
Andersson 71-1.57-2.41-3.26-4.11-4.59-5.45-6.34-7.21-8.10-8.57-9.43,8

Last pair was Sæterhaug and Johannessen. Here the latter skated aggressively from the start and quickly shook off the Trønder, who didn’t show his best long distance form, though he managed to stay ahead of Frang.

Sæterhaug   71-1.55-2.40-3.26-4.11-4.57-5.43-6.30-7.17-8.04-8.50-9.36,4
Johannessen 69-1.52-2.35-3.19-4.04-4.48-5.32-6.17-7.03-7.48-8.34-9.18,3
1.Oscar Mathisen     8.39,9 pb RR
2.Vasilij Ippolitov  8.43,9
3.Stener Johannessen 9.18,3
4.Martin Sæterhaug   9.36,4
5.Bjarne Frang       9.40,7
6.Otto Andersson     9.43,8
Total points:
1.Oscar Mathisen      4
2.Vasilij Ippolitov   9
3.Martin Sæterhaug   10
4.Stener Johannessen 14

Meanwhile Henning Olsen, the man who vanished so mysteriously from the national championship last weekend, turned up at Moss, winning the three distances of the national meet there with a series of 45,0, 2.29,9 og 9.09,2. His 500m time was quite outstanding. A new pb, jumping to 2nd place in the lowland all-time list and 6th place in the total list. His toughest opponent at the meet was the runner-up at the national championship, the upcoming rough talent Kristian Strøm, who improved his pbs solidly in all three distances with 48,0, 2.32,8 and 9.10,4, climbing from 112th to 73rd place in Adelskalenderen. We also note the keen and gifted skater Ole Mamen from nearby Rygge, winning the junior 1500m at a new pb in 2.39,6.

At the same time (or a few hours later due to the time difference) in Moscow, Vasilij’s brother Platon Ippolitov also took some strides forward, skating his first 10000m in 18.13,4, equal to 9th place on the all-time list in his debut, no less, and enternng Adelskalenderen at 44th place.