The first round of the Cross Country skiing World Cup at Ruka will end on Sunday. Freestyle pursuit for women’s ten kilometers starts at 12:50 pm and men’s fifteen kilometers at 1:50 pm. 

Classic names in pre-favourites

Three Olympic golds, three World Cup golds, second place in Friday’s sprint and victory in Saturday’s fifteen kilometers cross-country skiing competition. The list of Johannes Hösflot Kläbo‘s achievements is remarkable. As usual, the winner of recent years will also go to Sunday’s freestyle pursuit as the biggest pre-favorite. 

Johannes Hösflot Kläbo classic names in pre-favourites.
Johannes Hösflot Kläbo classic names in pre-favourites.

Another Norwegian, Emil Iversen, who became a second in last season, skied fourth on this  Saturday. He seems like a potential challenger for this compatriot.

Behind the Norwegian duo comes Alexander Bolshunov, who has done well in recent years. The Russian became third in men’s classic cross-country skiing on Saturday and on Friday’s sprint fourth.

Johaug’s hunt in women’s pursuit

Saturday’s winner at 10 km cross-country skiing Therese Johaug goes once again as an overwhelming pre-favorite to Sunday’s competition. The toughest challengers for the Johaug are Sweden’s Frida Karlsson and Ebba Andersson. Karlsson will start the chase from second place and Andersson from eight place. More blue-yellow colour to the top fight is brought by the new sprint winner Linn Svahn who leads the overall race after two skiing and will start from sixth place.

Russian duo Natalia Nepryaeva and Tatiana Sorina are potential successes as well. Nepryaeva particularly has been showing form and speed after a difficult season and on her best day, the Olympic medalist can give a tough threat to Johaug. Also Sorina has shown her potential in Ruka this year. 


Original text by Erasmus Envall & Henri Honkala

English text by Ida Konttila

Photos by Miika Venäläinen

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