Ice not thick enough for Dutch skating marathon

MIKE CORDER Associated Press Published:

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) -- Organizers in the Netherlands say it is still too early to decide if a 125-mile (200-kilometer) skating marathon across frozen waterways can be staged for the first time in 15 years.

Members of the Frisian Eleven Cities Association met Wednesday night to discuss the state of the ice along the route that is made up of frozen canals, rivers and lakes in the northern province of Friesland.

Association chairman Wiebe Wieling told a nationally televised news conference "We can't let the tour go ahead at the moment."

The association says it needs ice six inches (15 centimeters) thick over the entire track before they can give the green light.

The Elfstedentocht, or Eleven Cities Tour, was last staged in 1997.