Bart Schouten Completes Long Track Coaching Team in Calgary

Speed Skating Canada (SSC) announced today the appointment of Bart Schouten as Long Track National Team Coach, effective September 15. Under a revised coaching structure led by Long Track Program Director Sean Ireland, Schouten will team up with Michael Crowe to coach the sprint and middle distance skaters based at the Calgary Olympic Oval.

“I am honoured and proud to be a part of Speed Skating Canada as National Team Coach,” said Schouten. “I will do my utmost to contribute to the continuing success of Canadian speed skaters. Furthermore, I am looking forward to work in a team where all staff support each other and work with only one goal in mind: to do what is best for the athletes.”

Schouten is new to Speed Skating Canada, but the sport has played a role in his life for as long as he can remember. He has been coaching for 25 years, first in the Netherlands as a sprint coach, then moving to the United States in 1996. From 1998 to 2002 Schouten was the US National Allround Coach, coaching Derek Parra to a gold and a silver medal at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games.

From 2002 to 2006, Bart Schouten was the high performance manager and coach at the Utah Olympic Oval. During that period and under his leadership, German skater Monique Garbrecht became World Sprint Champion (the points world record still stands) and he trained prominent skaters such as Chad Hedrick, Derek Parra, Catherine Raney and Chris Witty to perform on the international stage, including Hedricks’ gold, silver and bronze medals at the 2006 Olympic Winter Games.

Following the 2006 Olympics, Dutch-born Schouten returned to Europe to become the Men’s National Team Coach in Germany. The German team showed significant overall improvement under his direction, achieving numerous national records. He also guided Dutch skater Bob de Jong during these 4 years to an Olympic bronze medal in Vancouver in 2010.

“We are tremendously excited to welcome Bart to our coaching team in Calgary,” said SSC’s Long Track Program Director Sean Ireland. “We wanted to put in place the best coaching team possible as we embark on the new Olympic cycle, and I am confident that Bart’s abilities will combine perfectly with those of Mike Crowe, as they team up to coach our sprint and middle distance athletes.”

Schouten will move to Calgary in the next few weeks to start working with SSC’s National and Development Team athletes. He will be able to familiarize himself with them for a little over a month before the first competition of the long track speed skating season, the Fall World Cup Selections, scheduled for October 21-24 in Calgary.