Zaandam and Amsterdam are this weekend the scene of one of the biggest sporting events in the Netherlands: the Dam tot Damloop. A total of around 70,000 runners, walkers, and cyclists will take part in the 37th edition.
The program begins on Saturday morning with the Dam tot Dam Walking Tour. Participants start in front of the Palace on Dam Square and walk through the city center and the Jordaan district to Dam tot Dam Park in Zaandam. On Saturday evening, the nightly Damloop will take place with around 15,000 runners. They will cover a distance of 8 kilometers through Zaandam.
However, the main event of the weekend will take place On Sunday: the Dam tot Damloop itself. Around 50,000 participants will then start at the Prins Hendrikkade in Amsterdam. Via the IJtunnel and Amsterdam-Noord, they will cover about 16 kilometers to the finish in Peperstraat in Zaandam. The race can be followed live on NH and AT5.
Furthermore, the Ethiopian athlete Almaz Ayana will participate. She won gold in the 10,000 meters and bronze in the 5,000 meters at the 2016 Olympics. In addition, Kenyans Geoffrey Kipchumba, Peter Kipsirat, Mathew Kimeli, and Moses Koech are on the start list for the men. Kipchumba and Kipsirat finished second and third, respectively, at last year’s Dam tot Damloop. Dutch athletes Khalid Choukoud, Richard Douma, and Jill Holterman are also competing in preparation for the Amsterdam marathon. They hope to run the limit for the Paris Olympics on October 15.
On Sunday the Dam tot Dam FietsClassic will also take place, in which more than 4,000 cyclists will cover distances ranging from 40 to 150 kilometers. The various routes lead through Noord-Holland cities with ‘Dam’ in the name, including Zaandam, Schoorldam, Monnickendam, and Volendam.
However, the organizers of the Dam tot Damloop warn participants against overheating. That’s because it’s expected to be 25 degrees on Sunday. Actually perfect starting conditions for the race. But Guido Vroemen, sports physician and medical biologist, does not think that this is an exaggeration. “Because when it is 33 degrees, many runners naturally slow down a bit because of the overwhelming heat. 25 degrees still feels quite pleasant, so participants will still try to run as fast as possible. And then 25 degrees is warm, and overheating is lurking,” he tells Het Parool.