The Utah Olympic Oval is no ordinary ice rink. The Oval takes up twice the square footage of a standard hockey rink and unlike a standard ice rink, the Oval needs spot on measurements to ensure the preciseness of the speed skating races. The installation of the ice is a time intensive process which takes multiple weeks to complete, beginning on July 16 and then open to the public on August 1. In order to set the ice, the base of concrete has to be lowered to a temperature of 17°F over a period of two days. Cracks can develop in the concrete if the cooling process is rushed. After the concrete is cooled then multiple steps are taken to layer the ice and paint in the final touches.
During the World Cup events each year, the Oval can seat up to 4,000 viewers around the ice. The Utah Olympic Oval houses some of the biggest Zambonis in the world having an 8 foot blade compared to a standard Zamboni with just over a 6 foot blade. The size of these Zambonis allows resurfacing the Oval’s ice quick and efficient. All of these factors plus the hard work of the Oval staff, help maintain the title of the ‘Fastest Ice on Earth’.