John Kristian Dahl and Britta Johansson Norgren win Vasaloppet!
The 93rd Vasaloppet and 9th event in Visma Ski Classics season VII took place today in Sweden. The track of 90 kilometer started in Sälen and finished in Mora with a tough sprintfinish in the men´s race.
Petter Eliassen from Team LeasePlan set up the pace from the start, pushing in the front until only 18km left to go. When approaching the finish in Mora, the athletes lined up for the tight sprint. John Kristian Dahl, Team United Bakeries was the strongest man and took his third victory in Vasaloppet. Having a back injury three days ago and not being sure if starting, made his performance even more impressive. Dahl secured his victory just ahead of Andreas Nygaard, Team Santander who finished 2nd and Stian Hoelgaard, Team Leaseplan who took the last podium place, not even a second after Dahl.
-It has been a fight all day. I was tired already after 30km and had to let go of the lead group. But I fought my way back taking it step by step and hill by hill, said John Kristian Dahl in the interview right after finish.
In the women’s race, the season long fight between Britta Johansson Norgren Lager 157 Ski Team and Katerina Smutna Team Santander, took a turn. Johansson Norgren pushed hard in the first uphill and was only followed by Astrid Øyre Slind from Team United Bakeries. Katerina Smutna had problems along the way and had to quit half way through the race. With 35km to go, Johansson Norgren managed to break away also from Slind, which secured the victory. After finshed on 2nd place three years in a row, Johansson Norgren finally win Vasaloppet.
-I am very tired but also so happy to win today. It felt pretty easy until Oxberg with 30km to go, but then it got really tough and I had to fight all the way to the finish, says Johansson Norgren in the interview.
Johansson Norgren increased her lead with 200 points in the Hertz Champion competition. On the mens´side, Tord Asle Gjerdalen holds on to the yellow bib with his team mate Andreas Nygaard now on 2nd place. In the sprint competition Nygaard and Johansson Norgren keeps their strong positions in the lead. Stian Hoelgaard continues as the leader in the Seefeld Youth competition same as Svenja Hoelzle on the womens’ side, although she did not start today. Team Santander increase their lead in the Pro Team competition followed by Lager 157 Ski Team. The new Visma Nordic Trophy competition is now lead by todays´winners; John Kristian Dahl and Britta Johansson Norgren.
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