2 April 2020
TalentNED announces the start of a new junior skating team, consisting of some of the greatest national skating talents. With this initiative, TalentNED seeks to close the gap between young talents and adult skating professionals. Earlier this year, TalentNED, with director Gerard Kemkers, started an off-road cycling talent team, of which former national BMX coach Bas de Bever is the program manager.
TalentNED has appointed Rutger Tijssen (46, Amstelveen) as the program manager for the new skating team and Robin Derks (32, De Rijp) as trainer/coach. Tijssen brings in a wealth of knowledge and experience as former (head) coach of, among others, Ireen Wüst and the Chinese national team. As national coach of Japan and (assistant) trainer of the professional skating team of TalentNED, Derks has also earned his spurs. TalentNED recently discontinued the professional skating team, to enable the transition to a junior talent team. This talent team will start in the coming weeks and will use Enschede as the key location for its program.
The junior skating team will initiate with the following talents: Evelien Vijn (17, Wieringerwerf), Merel Conijn (18, Edam), Eline Jansen (18, Deventer), Joep Wennemars (17, Dalfsen), Chris Fredriks (16, Deventer), Mats Siemons (17, Amsterdam), Colin Duivenvoorden (17, Woubrugge), Remo Slotegraaf (18, Peize), Beau Snellink (18, Noorden) and Stefan Westenbroek (18, Ommen).
Gerard Kemkers, director of TalentNED: “We want to offer young talented Dutch athletes the opportunity to grow and be well prepared for performing at the highest level. Our program is all about developing and discovering. Getting better is more important than being good. We are convinced that in this way we add something essential to the training pyramid. The time of the TalentNED professional team is behind us, with the talent skating team we connect with the target group for which TalentNED was aiming from the start. Our mission is successful when our young athletes make the step to a professional top team. ”
Rutger Tijssen, skating program manager at TalentNED: “We believe we can offer our skating talents the right environment and guidance. The best talents in the Netherlands will now be training together, stimulating each other to become better. All this within a full-time program in Enschede. Together with a professional coaching staff we will develop the talents and as such increase the chance of joining the professional skating top.”
TalentNED is an initiative of Infestos, a sustainable investment company based in Enschede. In addition to talent programs in multiple sports, TalentNED offers a platform aimed at talent development for business.