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Wild Rumpus Sports

Golberg Gets Back to Winning Ways in Lahti Skate Sprint; Harvey Seventh

Pål Golberg of Norway seized victory in today’s freestyle sprint in Lahti, Finland. Golberg, who’s first World Cup win came in December’s sprint in Lillehammer, received some luck on his path to the finish line. Golberg qualified for the final heat as a lucky loser, and found himself skiing for much of the final heat in second to last.

In the final, Matias Strandvallen (FIN) and Ola Vigen Hattestad (NOR) fell simultaneously but unrelated to each other, leaving the sprint to be contested by Golberg, Alexey Petukhov (RUS) in second, Eirik Brandsdal (NOR) in third, and Teodor Peterson (SWE) in fourth.

Emil Jönsson of Sweden was the favorite to win today having won the sprint race in Lahti the past three years. However, in his semifinal his ski went under Alex Harvey, causing him to collide with the Canadian and stand up on his skis to avoid falling in the final stretch. Jönsson tweeted, according to a translation: “Last three World Cup races, I have fallen / broken rod, in the Olympics, I stood up. Maybe will try to continue with that tactic #wisely #GrattisPål”

The North American results were led by Harvey in seventh, and American Simi Hamilton in 20th.

1. Pål Golberg (NOR)

2. Alexey Putkhov (RUS)

3. Eirik Brandsdal (NOR)

4. Teodor Peterson (SWE)

5. Matias Strandvall (FIN)

6. Ola Vigen Hattestad (NOR)


North American Results:


7. Alex Harvey (CAN)

20. Simi Hamilton (USA)

28. Andy Newell (USA)

43. Len Valjas (CAN)

64. Devon Kershaw (CAN)

69. Erik Bjornsen (USA)

80. Reese Hanneman (USA)

82. Raphael Couturier (CAN)

83. Graham Nishikawa (CAN)

93. Sylvan Ellefson (USA)



Randall Wins Lahti Sprint, Caldwell Third

Saturday was a historic day for the American women as the first post-Olympic World Cup took place in Lahti, Finland. After qualifying 11th, Kikkan Randall skied her way to another World Cup victory in the 1.5 k freestyle sprint. The win moves Randall to first in the World Cup sprint rankings, just under 40 points ahead of Germany’s Denise Hermann who failed to advance out of the quarterfinals in Saturday’s race. Randall wasn’t the only American to turn heads. Sophie Caldwell made her first World Cup podium, finishing third. The up-and-coming skier finished sixth in the same event at the Sochi Olympics, the best result an American woman has ever obtained. The result marks the first time two American women have been on a World Cup podium together. Slovenian Katja Visnar joined the American’s on the podium, placing second. The final was missing some big names, such as Norway’s Ingvlid…

Peterson Tops Men’s Skate-Sprint Qualifier in Lahti

Sweden’s Teodor Peterson topped the men’s 1.55-kilometer freestyle sprint qualifier at the fist World Cup in nearly a month in Lahti, Finland, on Saturday, less than a week after the final men’s race at the Olympics. Peterson put down the fastest time of 2:30.57, edging Norway’s Haavard Solaas Taugboel by 0.84 seconds. Another Norwegian, Pål Golberg advanced in third (+1.72), and Sweden’s Johan Edin was close behind in fourth (+1.75), as was Ola Vigen Hattestad in fifth (+1.9). Alex Harvey was the lone Canadian qualifier in 14th. Lenny Valjas was outside the top 30 in 43rd, Devon Kershaw placed 64th, Raphael Couturier was 82nd, Graham Nishikawa 83rd, and Michael Somppi 85th. Andy Newell and Simi Hamilton qualified for the U.S., with Newell in 23rd and Hamilton in 29th. Erik Bjornsen placed 69th in the qualifier, Reese Hanneman was 80th, and Sylvan Ellefson 93rd. Results

Østberg Opens Lahti World Cup with Qualifying Win; Randall, Caldwell Advance

Exactly a week after the last women’s race at the Olympics, the skiers jumped back into the World Cup on Saturday in Lahti, Finland, where Ingvild Flugstad Østberg of Norway nipped Slovenia’s Katja Visnar by sixth-hundredths of a second in the women’s 1.55-kilometer freestyle sprint qualifier. Marit Bjørgen qualified third for Norway, 0.14 seconds behind Østberg’s winning time of 2:53.89. Another Slovenian, Vesna Fabjan advanced in fourth (+0.43), and Sweden’s Jennie Oeberg had the fifth-fastest time (+0.8). Kikkan Randall qualified 11th for the U.S., and her teammate Sophie Caldwell made the cut in 25th. No Canadian women made the top 30 to advance to the heats, with Perianne Jones in 34th, Alysson Marshall in 46th, Heidi Widmer in 47th, Andrea Dupont in 59th, and Cendrine Browne in 71st. Also for the U.S., Ida Sargent was 44th, Jennie Bender 58th, Holly Brooks 66th, Caitlin Gregg 68th, and Liz Stephen 75th. Results

Video: Road to Sochi – Team Spain

Our friends on the Spanish national team asked us to share this with you.  They’re ready for the Games to begin.  Are you?  

Norway Reigns Supreme in Toblach Skate Sprints: Bjørgen, Hattestad Win

Team Norge couldn’t have given itself a better Olympic sendoff, with Marit Bjørgen capturing her second win of the weekend at the Toblach World Cup, then Ola Vigen Hattestad capping it off with a victory in the men’s freestyle sprint — the last race before the 2014 Winter Games start Saturday in Sochi, Russia. In the women’s 1.3-kilometer final on Sunday, Norway’s Maiken Caspersen Falla and American Kikkan Randall led most of it, while Bjørgen sat contently in the pack — until the final descent into the stadium. There she out-glided and outlasted the field, holding off Germany’s Denise Herrmann, who also came from behind to take second. Bjørgen won it by 0.42 seconds in 2:59.8, leading three Norwegians in the top four with Ingvild Flugstad Østberg in third (+1.45) and Falla in fourth (+2.12). Randall slipped toward the back of the pack after the last downhill to place fifth (+2.65)….

Legov Takes 15 k Classic Win from Cologna in Last Distance Race Before Olympics; Harvey Fifth

In what looked to be a fairytale re-entry to the World Cup for Dario Cologna, the plot line didn’t quite play out for the Swiss superstar in Saturday’s 15-kilometer classic individual start in Toblach, Italy. Cologna started 25th in his first World Cup of the season following an ankle injury in the fall, then rose to the top — finishing with the fastest time by 45 seconds. Others tried to match him, including Russia’s Dmitriy Japarov, who came 21 seconds short in second, and Sweden’s Marcus Hellner, who bumped Japarov down a spot after finishing 14.7 seconds back from Cologna. Ultimately, Russia’s Alexander Legov had the most juice left at the finish, edging Cologna by 2.9 seconds with the winning time of 37:02.7. Cologna settled for second, Hellner was third (+17.6), Japarov placed fourth (+23.8), and Canadian Alex Harvey notched fifth (+27.4). Petter Northug was the top Norwegian in sixth (+48.3)…

Norwegians Back on Top: Bjørgen Wins Toblach 10 k Classic by 36 Seconds; Four U.S. Women in Top 20

In Marit Bjørgen‘s first World Cup race back since a stomach virus took her out of the Tour de Ski a month ago, the Norwegian showed she’s in top form exactly a week before the Olympics, winning the 10-kilometer classic individual start in Toblach, Italy. And she made a statement as she did so, posting the fastest times through the two checkpoints at 2.1 and 6.7 k and winning by 36.7 seconds in 26:54.2. Teammate Therese Johaug was second for the Norwegian 1-2 sweep, and Sweden’s Charlotte Kalla notched third, 42.9 seconds behind Bjørgen, in her first World Cup since Davos, Switzerland, in mid December. Second with just over 3 k to go, Poland’s Justyna Kowalczyk ended up fifth, following Norway’s Heidi Weng in fourth. “I am very happy with my result today,” Bjørgen told FIS.  “I was not so strong at Norwegian championships so I was not sure of my…

Caitlin Gregg Gets Another Weekend of World Cup Racing in Toblach

After originally planning to fly home to Minneapolis on Wednesday, Caitlin Gregg posted on Facebook on Tuesday that she had a change of plans and will be starting this weekend’s World Cup in Toblach, Italy, before sending her husband Brian off to compete at the Olympics in Sochi, Russia. “I have decided to stay in Italy with Brian and see him off before the Olympic Games begin!” Caitlin wrote in a post that began with a tribute to the late Igor Badamshin, Peter Hale and John Hugus. “Life is so awesome but precious! In honor of our former coach Igor Badamshin, our ski rep Peter Hale and our great friend John Hugus we have vowed to live like these incredible men did! Full of life, love and even more so immense GIVING and GRATITUDE to those around us!” She went on to explain she’ll start the Toblach World Cups this weekend. “I am so grateful the…

Kowalczyk Dusts Women’s 10 k Classic on Her Birthday at Home; Stephen Sixth

A heavy favorite for the women’s 10-kilometer classic mass start in Szklarska Poręba, Poland, Justyna Kowalczyk lived up to her home-crowd’s delight on Sunday, dropping the field soundly by the halfway point and striding to a 41.8-second win. On her 31st birthday, Kowalczyk finished without anyone in sight in 34:34.2, and waited at the finish to congratulate Russian runner-up Yulia Tchekaleva. Another Russian, Julia Ivanova rounded out the podium in third, 1:15.2 minutes behind, after outsprinting Germany’s Denise Herrmann by four seconds. After Herrmann in fourth, Germany’s Claudia Nystad took fifth, 5.2 seconds ahead of American Liz Stephen in sixth (+1:26.4). For Stephen, it was a career best in an outright World Cup (not including stages). Germany had three in the top seven with Stefanie Boehler (+1:28.4), who finished ahead of Russia’s Natalia Zhukova in eighth (+1:47.8). Ida Sargent of the U.S. placed ninth (+1:49.3) for her best result of the…