Speed Skating Canada hires coach from dominant Dutch squad


Dutch speed skating coach Geert Kuiper has joined Canada’s long-track team as a technical coach advisor.

Kuiper coached team pursuit squads and mass start skaters in The Netherlands, the dominant country in long-track speed skating, from 2014 to 2018.

The Dutch won women’s silver and men’s bronze in team pursuit and a pair of mass start bronze in February’s Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

Kuiper has also worked with Olympic champions Sven Kramer, Irene Wust and Gerard van Velde during his career.

The 58-year-old from Wolvega has been contracted by Speed Skating Canada to work under long-track high performance director Cara Thibault and with national team coaches “with the goal of leading Canada to podium performances in international competition,” Speed Skating Canada said Friday in a statement.

Canada totalled two long-track medals in Pyeongchang with Dutch-born Ted-Jan Bloemen winning 10,000-metre gold and 5,000-metre silver.