Four Americans Score World Cup Points in Falun
Four American’s finished in the points in Sunday’s FIS Cross Country World Cup distance races on a wet, sloppy track in Falun, Sweden, led by Jessie Diggins in 14th.
With temperatures well above the freezing mark and no natural snow, organizers relied on machine-made snow to cover a narrow 2.5k loop for Sunday’s 10k four-lap women’s event and the men’s six-lap 15k freestyle mass start races.
Four American men started Sunday’s race with David Norris posting his best World Cup result of the season in 24th. “I felt strong,” David said. “Lap three and four were so painful, but I luckily pulled it back together for the last two laps.”
Russia’s Alexander Bolshunov won the race, with Norway’s Sjur Roethe in second, and Ivan Yakimushkin of Russia in third. Benjamin Lustgarten was 60th, followed by Ian Torchia in 65th and Kevin Bolger in 68th.
In the women’s 10k race, Norway’s Therese Johaug won her 12th race of the season 6.5 seconds ahead of Sweden’s Ebba Andersson in second. Norway’s Heidi Weng was third. Sadie Maubet Bjornsen was 21st, and Rosie Brennan was 23rd. Hailey Swirbul was 35th, just 11 seconds out of the points. Sophie Caldwell was 38th, Alayna Sonnesyn was 49th and Julia Kern was 57th.
"The conditions were pretty tough today, variable snow conditions on a really narrow course that made it difficult to move up," noted Julia, who is rebounding from a leg injury and made her first World Cup start in three weeks. "I did not feel good today...so just being able to race was a big accomplishment. I am hoping with another week of training and some more races coming up, I can gain back my fitness and work back into things."
Up next is the second stage race of the season - Ski Tour 2020 - Feb. 15-23 with six races spread out over nine days at five different venues in Sweden and Norway.