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No Surprises at SuperTour Finals

There were no surprises in the SuperTour Finals classic sprint qualifier in Madawaska this morning, as both Kikkan Randall (USST) and Andy Newell (USST) cruised to victory.

Ida Sargent (CGRP) was Randall’s closest challenger, 2.5 seconds back. She appeared to be up on Randall halfway through the course, but she left early in her three-second start window and probably never led. Behind her, it was Sadie Bjornsen (MODT), Holly Brooks (APU), and 15-year-old J2 Heather Mooney (Stratton).

On the men’s side, Newell also beat second-place Simi Hamilton (SVSEF) by 2.5 seconds. Canada’s Brent McMurtry was third, with Mike Sinnott (SVSEF) and Lenny Valjas (Canada) third and fourth.

Men’s sprint leader Garrott Kuzzy (CXC) fell on the fast, icy course and is done for the day. The afternoon should see some dicey pack racing, as the course has some technical corners. The short length (roughly 2:45 for men and 3:20 for women) should help some of the younger skiers with less distance background like Hamilton and Sargent. On the other hand, both Newell and Randall ski well on this surface.

Check our blog and Twitter feed for more updates throughout the afternoon.

Kikkan Randall (APU)

Andy Newell (USST)

Mike Hinckley (APU)

Garrott Kuzzy (USST)

Torin Koos (USST)

Kikkan Randall (APU)

Ida Sargent (CGRP)

David Chamberlain (MWSC/Fischer)

Caitlin Patterson (UVM), the junior leader

Holly Brooks (APU)

Sadie Bjornsen (Methow Olympic Development)

Kikkan Randall Wins Ladies 30km at US Distance Nationals

Obviously if the ladies 30km freestyle race came down to a sprint at the US Distance Nationals today in Fort Kent, ME, Kikkan Randall would have a distinct advantage over the rest of the racers in the field. That is just how it played out. Randall decided to push the pace throughout the later kilometers of the race. Although she did not drop any of the other four women who had skied in the lead pack throughout the entire race, she did put herself in position to control the race right across the line.

Kikkan Randall (APU/USST) wins the Ladies 30km Freestyle at US Distance Nationals in Fort Kent, ME.

The lead pack of five included Rebecca Dussault, Holly Brooks, Caitlin Compton and Canadian Brooke Gosling.  As they cross the line it was Dussault who would bring home the silver and Brooks that would claim third.

Complete Unofficial Results

Below are live updates that were taken throughout the race.  Check back soon to read a full race report.

Kikkan Randall (APU/USST) leads the Ladies 30km Freestyle at US Distance Nationals in Fort Kent, ME.

LIVE RACE UPDATES – Through 5km it is Kikkan Randall, Holly Brooks, Caitlin Compton and Kristina Strandberg out front with a decent gap back to the chase pack.

The pace has slowed as the leaders go through the 8km mark.  It is Holly Brooks who is setting the pace, with Caitlin Compton, Kristina Strandberg and Nicole DeYong all close on her tails.  The lead pack is up to eleven with ten in the chase group about 15 seconds back.

Through 12km it is Caitlin Compton setting the pace with Holly Brooks, Nicole DeYong, Rebecca Dussault, Kikkan Randall, Brooke Gosling and Kristina Strandberg all tucked in behind.

Now at 16km Holly Brooks once again sets the pace up front with Caitlin Compton, Nicole DeYong, Holly Brooks, Kikkan Randall, Brooke Gosling and Rebecca Dussault all in the lead pack.  Tazlina Mannix and Kristina Strandberg are about 15 seconds off the pace.

At 20km Rebecca Dussault has moved to the front to take over pace setting.

As the leaders come through the stadium (at about 22km) it is Kikkan Randall who has moved to the front with Holly Brooks, Rebecca Dussault, Caitlin Compton, Brooke Gosling and Nicole DeYong all within two seconds of the lead.

At 25km Nicole DeYong has fallen about five seconds back.

With roughly 3-4 km to go Kikkan Randall is pushing the pace hard with the other three in the lead pack hanging on.  DeYong still remains out the back and Tazlina Mannix is working very hard in an attempt to drop Kristina Strandberg.

Kikkan Randall wins the ladies 30km in a sprint.  Rebecca Dussault comes to the line 1.3 seconds back while Holly Brooks takes the last step on the podium 1.9 seconds behind Randall’s time.  Caitlin Compton crossed the line in fourth 2.9 seconds off the pace, Brooke Gosling in at plus 6.1, while Nicole DeYong crosses 1:09 off the lead time.

US Nationals Sprint Podium Photos

Kikkan Randall, Rebecca Dussault and Laura Valaas work their way through the heats to climb the podium as the nations best sprinters, while Simi Hamilton, Mike Hinckley and Garrot Kuzzy do the same on the men’s side.

Rebecca Dussault (2nd place - CXC Team Vertical Limit), Kikkan Randall (1st place - USST/APU) and Laura Valaas (3rd place - APU).  Photo courtesy of Ben Dubay/Swix.

Rebecca Dussault (2nd place - CXC Team Vertical Limit), Kikkan Randall (1st place - USST/APU) and Laura Valaas (3rd place - APU). Photo courtesy of Ben Dubay/Swix.

Mike Hinckley (2nd place - APUNSC/Rossignol), Simi Hamilton (1st place - SVSEF) and Garrot Kuzzy (3rd place - USST/CXC Team Vertical Limit).  Photo courtesy of Ben Dubay/Swix.

Mike Hinckley (2nd place - APUNSC/Rossignol), Simi Hamilton (1st place - SVSEF) and Garrot Kuzzy (3rd place - USST/CXC Team Vertical Limit). Photo courtesy of Ben Dubay/Swix.

US Nationals Sprint Qualifier Photos

Rob Whitney was able to capture some of the action during today’s sprint qualifier at the US National Championships.