The Long Distance Ski Championship

Johansson Norgren and Nygaard win Sgambeda

Britta Johansson Norgren, Lager 157 Ski Team, achieved a clean sweep in Sgambeda winning all her individual categories. Andreas Nygaard, Team Santander, showed his strength and beat everyone in a mass sprint finish.

The second installment of Visma Ski Classics Season VIII took place in Livigno, Italy, today as the 28th edition of Sgambeda got under way in true winter conditions.
The women started at 9:25 am, and very early on seven skiers separated themselves from the lead group, among them all the favorites; Britta Johansson Norgren, Kateriná Smutna, Bauer Ski Team, Kari Vikhagen Gjeitnes, Team Santander, Astrid Øyre Slind, Team Koteng, Sara Lindborg, Team Serneke, Lina Korsgren, Åre Längdskidklubb, and Laila Kveli, Team Tynell.

Britta crossed the sprint line as the fastest skier followed by Kari and Astrid. The breakaway group stayed together until the hill climb point where Britta again proved that she is in excellent shape by taking the opening stage of the new climb competition. About 500 meters before the finish, Britta sped up and stayed in the lead until the end, even though Kateriná got very close. The new awarding Visma Skier of the day was given to Britta Johansson Norgren after her impressive achievement in todays´ race, conquering both the Sprint, Climb and Champion bibs.

“Everything went according to my plan,” the happy winner Britta acknowledged after the race. “I didn’t feel that strong in the last uphill, and let Kateriná take the lead right after that. I started my final sprint a little too early, but luckily managed to stay ahead of the others. This was a great start to the season, and I will now go back home, train hard and spend some time with my family.”

In the men’s race, a huge lead group stayed together for about 15 km. Anton Karlsson, Lager 157 Ski Team, managed to win the sprint stage, which will be his main focus for this season. He was followed by Ermil Vokuev, Russian Marathon Team, and Oskar Kardin, Team Santander. By the time of the hill climb competition, the lead group was broken up, but still about 15 skiers remained in place at the front. Simen Østensen, Team BN Bank, was the strongest in the long climb to take the lumberjack bib.

When the skiers came out of the tunnel through the final stretch to the finish, Andreas Nygaard left everybody else behind and claimed his first victory at high altitude. Thorgeir Skare Thygesen, Team Oslo Sportslager - Rustad IL, was right behind him and the third place went to Stian Hoelgaard, Team Koteng, who certainly is no stranger to podium placings.

“I felt strong today,” Andreas said confidently at the finish. “But the race was harder than I expected. We kept a good pace after the sprint, and the climb in this altitude was challenging. Tord Asle and I had a minor crash just before the finish where he broke his pole, but I managed to stay unharmed. I’m in a great shape now and I knew that no one could beat me in the end. Now, I just have to stay focused and make sure that I’ll be on the podium in the races to come. I lost 50 points because I didn’t race last weekend, so I have some catching up to do.”

The yellow Hertz Champion bib went to Thorgeir Skare Thygesen, today’s second place finisher, as he had those valuable points from competing in last weekend’s Pro Team Tempo in Pontresina. Britta, of course, is now wearing all the bibs, except the youth one, which remains with Evelina Bångman. In the men’s youth category, Oskar Kardin has the lead but he will face a fierce competition from Ermil Vokuev and Torfleif Syrstad, Team Koteng. The pro team competition is now led by Lager 157 Ski Team, but they are closely followed by Team Santander and Team Koteng. 

There will now be a holiday break in Visma Ski Classics, and the action will resume in Seefeld- Austria, on January 13, 2018 when Kaiser Maximilian Lauf takes place.



Thorgeir Skare Thygesen (2nd), Andreas Nygaard (winner), Stian Hoelgaard (3rd) 
Photo: Magnus Östh



Katerina Smutna (2nd) Britta Johansson Norgren (winner) Kari Vikhagen Gjeitnes (3rd)
Photo: Magnus Östh


Top 5 Sgambeda 2017

Women

Name


Time
1 Britta Johansson Norgren   LAG 1:34:39.9
2 Kateřina Smutná BST 1:34:40.5
3 Kari Vikhagen Gjeitnes SAN 1:34:43.2
4 Astrid Øyre Slind KOT 1:34:46.7
5 Sara Lindborg SER 1:34:59.0
       

Men

Name


Time
1 Andreas Nygaard SAN 1:20:41.2
2 Torgeir Skare Thygesen OSR 1:20:41.4
3 Stian Hoelgaard KOT 1:20:41.9
4 Morten Eide Pedersen BNB 1:20:42.3
5 Oskar Kardin SAN 1:20:42.4

See the full results lista and standings here
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