Maubet Bjornsen First American Woman to Lead Cross Country World Cup
Sadie Maubet Bjornsen finished fourth in today’s 10k classic in the three-day Ruka mini-tour and became the first American woman ever to wear the overall FIS Cross Cross Country World Cup leader’s bib.
“Another dream day here in Ruka, just barely missing the podium by one second,” Sadie said. “No regrets though, because I gave it my all today. I have always loved the courses here in Finland, but it just feels like things came together for me. I managed to pace myself well, which was important after yesterday’s hard effort. On top of that, I once again had awesome skis out there to work with!”
Maubet Bjornsen led three Davis U.S. Cross Country National Team Program athletes into the top 15 in Saturday’s 10k. Rosie Brennan tied a career-best World Cup result in sixth, and Jessie Diggins was 13th.
“I wasn't feeling terribly confident in the warm-up with the super steep hills here in Ruka so I had pretty low expectations,” said Rosie, who noted that she has the tendency to go out a little hot and then slowly fade. “So my only plan was to start conservative and push the flats. I got to the first split, just over 1k into the race and I heard I was race leader...so much for a plan. After that, I just kept trying to make up time in all the small spots. It worked well and I was greeted at the finish with a long stint in the leader's chair which is always a great way to start the season.”
“Massive shout out to my training buddy, who has been just crushing workouts all summer and fall long, Rosie Brennan,” Sadie added. “She started quite a bit earlier than me, so I channeled energy from her because I kept hearing the loudspeakers announcing how well she was doing.”
In the 15k men’s race, Eric Bjornsen was the top American in 28th and Simi Hamilton was 35th.
The three-day Ruka mini-tour wraps up Sunday with a 10k freestyle for the women and 15k freestyle for the men. Sadie is currently second in the overall Ruka mini-tour standings, just 18 seconds behind Norway's Therese Johaug. Rosie is eighth overall, and Jessie 12th.
HOW TO WATCH
All times EST
Sunday, Dec. 1
4:00 a.m. - Women’s 10k pursuit, Ruka, FIN - Olympic Channel.com & NBC Sports Gold
5:15 a.m. - Men’s 15k pursuit, Ruka, FIN - Olympic Channel.com & NBC Sports Gold
8:30 a.m. - Women’s 10k pursuit, Ruka, FIN - Olympic Channel*
Exclusive commercial-free coverage will be available for subscribers of the NBC Sports Gold Pass, available here: https://www.nbcsports.com/gold/snow.