The World Championship is not only the place where great hockey stars shine, but it is also about a marathon of practices and games. After every practice or game, there are stacks of sweaty jerseys, towels and gloves in the corridors of the Sazka Arena.
Each team has a special assistant who takes care of this laundry. „My job is to put together all laundry, jumble it into the iron-plate boxes and take it to the Arena internals. There it is picked up by people from laundrette,“ explains Tomáš Jankovič, one of these assistants. „Each team has about two full bags of laundry after every practice or game. Every bag weights about thirty to fifty kilos, sometimes up to eighty kilos,“ continues the other assistant Karel Hornický. „For example, Czech team gave us about seventy towels after the game yesterday,“ he adds.
The laundresses carry away the laundry five times a day. „We thought that we´ll have about four hours to wash one team´s laundry but the fact is that we wash the laundry of three teams in four hours,“ said the head of the laundrette Monika Kratochvílová. „After the last match, we carry away the laundry at 10.30 p.m. and everything is clean at 7.30 a.m.,“ she continues.
The laundrette works twenty-four-seven during the 2004 IIHF World Championship. Five laundresses take care of the laundry. „Players are packing their stuff into the special bags that cannot be opened. Each bag has player´s name on it,“ said Kratochvílová. Her laundrette has several kinds of washing machines for different amount of laundr and a few dryers. „The jerseys are dryed partly. We put it onto the clotheshanger and it becomes dry till the morning. We do not iron them,“ explains Kratochvílová. „We can wash almost everything. Goalie´s pads, jerseys, gloves.“