Oscar Mathisen
Speedskating - Oscar Diary

More exhibitions in Stockholm

The sky and weather gods weren’t too cooperative towards the organisers of the well-published international meet at Hammarby lake a hundred years ago today. Rain had stopped, but an unpleasant wind was blowing and the thaw was worrying, too. Still there was a bit of water on the ice, but it had been nursed well and was in relatively good condition. Attendance thankfully was better than the day before, but different sources don’t estimate any more than 2 or 3 thousand. We must hope that the club didn’t spend too much in advertising and was able to get an income from the meet. Dagens Nyheter mention some notables in the crowd, known as the biggest skating enthusiasts in town: Consul Percy Tham, Captain Silfverstolpe, Office Manager Salmson and the ex World Champion Mr. Salchow, sporting a dark facial tan from the St. Moritz sun.

In the 1500m, Oscar again was skating against his old rival Öholm, who did his utmost to follow him as long as he could, but soon the Norwegian was quite lonely up front. The time, 2.24,9, also was a track record for the lake. In another pair, Zerling and Cederlöf were level until the last lap, then Zerling accelerated and left his pairmate more than 4 seconds behind.

1.Oscar Mathisen     2.24,9 TR
2.Paul Zerling       2.35,4
3.Moje Öholm         2.37,2
4.David Pettersson   2.38,3
5.Paul Poss          2.39,7
6.Ernst Cederlöf     2.40,0
7.Sven Lundgren      2.41,0 pb
8.Henrik Morén       2.49,0
9.B Lindh            2.54,0 pb
1.Oscar Mathisen     3
2.Paul Zerling       8
3.Moje Öholm         9
4.Paul Poss         13
5.Ernst Cederlöf    14,5
6.Sven Lundgren     17,5
7.Henrik Morén      19

First pair in the 10000m was Henrik Morén against David Pettersson, who built a considerable lead in the first half of the race, and it seemed the veteran Morén was going to suffer a good beating. But then the energy and resilience of the old cyclist came into its own and slowly he reeled the Eskilstuna skater in. When the last lap started they were side by side, and Petterson had no chance against the finish of Morén. In the 2nd pair Zerling made admirable attempts to follow the great champion Mathisen and was close for 20 laps. Then Mathisen said goodbye and produced a discouraging display of speed and power for the last 5 ones, finishing nearly half a lap ahead, though not fast enough to beat Axelson’s 18.32,6 track record from last year.

Zerling against the champion Mathisen, from Dagens Nyheter

1.Oscar Mathisen     18.47,9
2.Paul Zerling       19.07,0
3.Paul Poss          19.12,6
4.Moje Öholm         19.28,0
5.Henrik Morén       19.39,4
6.David Pettersson   19.42,3
7.Ernst Cederlöf     20.12,6
Sven Lundgren brøyt
Total points:
1.Oscar Mathisen     4
2.Paul Zerling      10
3.Moje Öholm        13
4.Paul Poss         15
5.Ernst Cederlöf    20
6.Henrik Morén      23

Meanwhile the Austrians for the first time arranged their national championship at Innsbruck, on Lanser See at 840 m.a.s.l. The results from Davos must have convinced them that the fresh, light air of the mountains must be a good thing, or maybe the poor winter conditions forced them to go here. And the experiment was successful, because good old Thomas Bohrer, who only made 46,0 in Davos, now set a new Austrian record in 44,8, thus he shared the 5th place in the all-time list with Rudolf Gundersen and Moje Öholm. At the same time he climbed past Peder Østlund and now was 4th in Adelskalenderen. A major accomplishment for which he no doubt was very happy. He also won the 5000m in 9.11,1 and the 1500m the day before in 2.29,6, same time as in Davos. Many others set fine times here as well. Stefan Pelischek entered the top 100 in the 5000m all-time list with an 80th place in 9.18,9. 4 participants skated 50,0 or better in the 500m and 5 skated under 10 minutes in the 5000m: Karl Pirker in 9.34,7, Raoul Bandl in 9.39,8 og Heinrich Prochaska in 9.51,2 in addition to the above. With these promising recruits, the future of Austrian skating looked bright.

At Hamar they continued the national meet that had started on Saturday under fine conitions with many personal bests. Hopes were high for the next day, too. At 9 p.m. it was clear, with a starry sky. But then came the clouds, and the wind. In just 3 hours it increased to a storm. The temperature rose and when the meet started again on Sunday at 1 p.m., it was +7 centigrade, and the ice was wet and rough. The wind had abated some, though. In spite of the conditions there were about 2000 spectators.

In the 1500m, Sæterhaug defeated Henning Olsen again and clocked 2.35,4 vs. 2.36,3. But Schou and Syversen surprised in another pair. The former in fact equalled the time of the national champion, whereas Syversen beat Olsen by 1/10. In a third pair, Lundgreen beat Hansen 2.37,7 to 2.38,8. In a fourth pair Strøm skated against Christensen and equalled 3rd place with 2.36,2. Stener Johannessen also skated well against Mamen in a fifth pair and clocked 2.36,4. Karl Gulbrandsen skated alone in 2.42,8.

1.Martin Sæterhaug   2.35,4
Gunerius Schou       2.35,4
3.Sigurd Syversen    2.36,2
Kristian Strøm       2.36,2
5.Henning Olsen      2.36,3
6.Stener Johannessen 2.36,4
7.Trygve Lundgreen   2.37,7
8.Ole Mamen          2.38,0
9.Thoralf Hansen     2.38,8
10.Otto Christiansen 2.39,4
11.Karl Gulbrandsen  2.42,8
1.Kristian Strøm      9.5
Sigurd Syversen       9.5
3.Martin Sæterhaug   10
4.Trygve Lundgreen   11
5.Henning Olsen      13
6.Stener Johannessen 15
7.Otto Christiansen  20
Ole Mamen            20
9.Karl Gulbrandsen   27

In the first pair of the 5000m, Olsen and Sæterhaug met for the third time in a row, and Olsen, who had started the meet briskly, hoping to teach the national champion a lesson, was beaten for the third time, this time comprehensively. The champion finished in 9.38,1, hoping to make up the half-point that separated him from the overall win.

57-1.41-2.28,5-3.15  -4.02-4.50-5.37-6.25-7.13-8.0?-8.50-9.38,1
58-1.42-2.33  -3.22,5-4.13-5.01-5.51-6.41-7.31-8.22-9.13-10.03,3

Two more candidates for the overall win came in the next pair: Strøm, the upcoming long distance expert, and Lundgreen, the old and renowned one. They skated side by side for the first few laps, then Strøm started pulling away. The times were well ahead of Sæterhaug, and strong arguments against Syversen, who now was the only one who could beat Strøm overall.

53,5-1.37,5-2.22-3.07  -3.52  -4.38-5.26-6.13  -7.00-7.47  -8.34-9.20,9
53,5-1.37  -2.23-3.08,5-3.54,5-4.42-5.30-6.17,5-7.05-7.53,5-8.39-9.29,1

8.39 at the last split of Lundgreen is probably a couple of seconds wrong.

Syversen came in the 3rd pair against Johannessen. Soon it was clear that they could not match the pace of Strøm in the increasing and gusty wind. But they had a full fight from lap to lap and the outcome was uncertain until the last meters, when the younger Syversen, who had been the more aggressive from the start, edged ahead of his more experienced clubmate.

55  -1.41-2.27-3.14-4.01  -4.49-5.39-6.27,5-7.17-8.05-  8.52,5-9.38,6
56,5-1.42-2.28-3.15-4.01,5-4.50-5.40-6.27,5-7.17-8.05,5-8.53  -9.39,0

In the 4th pair, Mamen and Christiansen also had a good fight, but now the wind was really troublesome and they finished well into the 9 forties.

1.Kristian Strøm     9.20,9
2.Trygve Lundgreen   9.29,1
3.Martin Sæterhaug   9.38,1
4.Sigurd Syversen    9.38,6
5.Stener Johannessen 9.39,0
6.Otto Christiansen  9.44,7
7.Ole Mamen          9.49,1
8.Henning Olsen     10.03,3
Total points:
1.Kristian Strøm     10,5
2.Martin Sæterhaug   13 (212,950)
3.Trygve Lundgreen   13 (213,197)
4.Sigurd Syversen    13,5
5.Stener Johannessen 20
6.Henning Olsen      21
7.Otto Christiansen  26
8.Ole Mamen          27
9.Karl Gulbrandsen   27

Melvin Johansen also won today’s junior distances in 49,3 and 2.37,3, substantially ahead of the other juniors, and the newspapers overflow with acclamations. He is said to be quite a revelation, skating in a style and with a playful ease that left everybody with an expectation of major titles in the time to come. At 17, he was one of speedskating’s first prodigy stars, and Hamar now after many years of stagnation surely could hope to continue the rich old traditions from Norseng, Godager, Sinnerud and Einar Halvorsen. He was a short, but well-built young man reminding you a lot of Oscar Mathisen with his light strokes that provided acceleration without tiring him out, and with flawless technique and tactics. It was predicted that 9.05,2 would stand as a junior record for a long time. The Hamar club had heard that the Berlin club had set up a junior class at their European Championship, and decided to send their big talent abroad.

In a junior meet at Frogner, Eugen Berntzen skated his first known results at 52,7 and 3.01,7, respectively 6th and 19th place. It must have been an experience worth repeating. But he was beaten by an 18 year old who tried his new speed skates for the first time and finished in 51,5 and 2.47,1, good enough for 3rd and 2nd place. His only other known former result was a 500 m in 64,4 on probably substandard skates the season before. His name: Fridtjof Paulsen.

The distance winners were Johan Hansen in 50,0 and Hilditsch Holm in 2.46,5.