Top Pick: 2001 European Figure Skating Championships in Bratislava

The first European Skating Championships of the third millennium organised by the International Skating Union (ISU) will this year take place in Bratislava. During the competition, the Slovak Skating Union will celebrate its 130th anniversary of organised figure skating in Slovakia, as well as the 50th birthday of Ondrej Nepela, the best Slovak skater ever.
The late Nepela, who was recently selected best Slovak sportsman of the 20th century, became the first and only Slovak Olympic figure skating champion in 1972.


Zuzana Ďurkovská and Marián Mesároš.
photo: Samuel Kubáni - Štartfoto

The first European Skating Championships of the third millennium organised by the International Skating Union (ISU) will this year take place in Bratislava. During the competition, the Slovak Skating Union will celebrate its 130th anniversary of organised figure skating in Slovakia, as well as the 50th birthday of Ondrej Nepela, the best Slovak skater ever.

The late Nepela, who was recently selected best Slovak sportsman of the 20th century, became the first and only Slovak Olympic figure skating champion in 1972. He also won three golds in the World Championships and five in European Championships. For his skating successes, the Bratislava ice-rink where this year's championships will take place is named after him.

The 2001 competition will start on Monday, January 22 and last throughout the week. Music ranging from classical to Latino-American to the most modern styles will be heard during the dance figure skating disciplines at the Ondrej Nepela ice-rink.

The first day will begin with qualifying free skating at 11:00. The official opening ceremony of the championships will start at 18:30, marked by a speech from Slovak Prime Minister Mikuláš Dzurinda and a mini-play on Slovak figure skating history. On Tuesday qualifications for ice dancing will be followed by the men's short programme.

Beginning Wednesday the real medal competitions will begin when the audience will be treated to the 2001 winners in pair's free skating, on Thursday in men's free skating, on Friday in ice dancing and on Saturday in ladies' free skating. Sunday, January 28 will see an Exhibition Gala programme by all the winners.

Figure skaters from all around Europe will compete at the Ondrej Nepela Ice Rink on Odbojárov 9. Tickets can be ordered at S-tours on Laurinská 2 at the tel: 5543 1802, 5543 0648, or via E-mail: mackova@s-tours.bts.sk.


By Zuzana Habšudová

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