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The Longest Toe

Håvard Solås Taugbøl (NOR) had the longest toe at the Norwegian National Championships relay on Sunday and anchored Lillehammer to bronze. Here from the World Cup in Falun (SWE) on January 28. Photo: Nordic Focus
Håvard Solås Taugbøl (NOR) had the longest toe at the Norwegian National Championships relay on Sunday and anchored Lillehammer to bronze. Here from the World Cup in Falun (SWE) on January 28. Photo: Nordic Focus

Håvard Solås Taugbøl (NOR) had the longest toe at the Norwegian National Championships relay and anchored Lillehammer to bronze. Here from the World Cup in Falun (SWE) in January. Photo: Nordic Focus

…belongs to Håvard Taugbøl (NOR), while the younger crew collected hardware at the FIS U23 and Junior World Championships.

Håvard Solås Taugbøl skied onto the Lahti (FIN) World Championships team with strong performances at the Norwegian National Championships this weekend.

While the Lahti World Championships team was announced after the Norwegian National Championships skiathlon events on Saturday, Taugbøl’s most impressive performance for the weekend was anchoring Lillehammer Skiklub to the podium at the 3×10 kilometer relay on Sunday. Coming into the finish lane in fourth place, Taugbøl secured the bronze medal for his club. Despite being blocked repeatedly for the sprint finish, the 23-year-old sprint specialist surged toward the line and had the longest toe as they both reached across the line. Marathon specialist Øystein Pettersen skied the first leg for Lillehammer.

Taugbøl has posted several top 10 in the World Cup this season and had the fastest qualifier time at the Toblach World Cup three weeks ago. He won the FIS sprint at Gålå in December and was second in the Scandinavian Cup sprint in Lillehammer the following weekend, and this weekend he was third in the sprint at the national championships. Combined, these efforts earned him a ticket to the Norwegian sprint team at the FIS World Championships in Finland.

Also, Hans Christer Holund helped his club LYN Ski to gold in the relay. Holund, who skied the second leg for LYN, surged to create a gap for his team that nobody was able to close, and LYN won by more than a minute. Prior to the relay, Holund was named an extra to the World Championships team.

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Hans Christer Holund (NOR) skied the 2nd leg for LYN Ski at Norwegian Championships relay on Sunday and surged to secure a gap that nobody could close, helping his team to gold. Here from the 2017 Tour de Ski. Photo: Nordic Focus

Hans Christer Holund (NOR) skied the 2nd leg for LYN Ski at Norwegian Championships relay and surged to secure a gap that nobody could close, helping his team to gold. Here from Tour de Ski. Photo: Nordic Focus

Among the women, Heidi Weng was on the podium in all the individual competitions at the national championships. On Thursday, she was third in the 10km classic. Then she was second in the skate sprint on Friday, and third again for the skiathlon on Saturday. Ingvild Flugstad Østberg was second in the classic race on Thursday. Also, Marte Bjørnsgaard helped Lillehammer to silver in the 3x5km relay on Sunday.

Meanwhile, at the FIS U23 and Junior World Championships in Utah (USA), January 30 to February 5, Madshus skiers earned medals in both the junior and the U23 category. Junior Petter Stakston (NOR) took home the silver medal in the classic sprint on Monday, January 30, after posting the fastest qualifier time in the event. Junior Marte Mæhlum Johansen (NOR) first earned the silver medal in the 5-kilometer skate on Thursday, then continued with gold in the skiathlon on Friday. Junior Harald Østberg Amundsen (NOR) was third in the skiathlon. Additionally, Thea Krokan Murud (NOR) earned the silver in the women’s U23 5-kilometer skate race on Thursday.  Finally, on Sunday, Amundsen and Jon Rolf Skape Hope helped Norway to gold in the relay.

Complete results all events

Thea Krokan Murud (NOR) earned the silver medal in the womens 5km skate race at the FIS U23 World Championships in Utah (USA) on Thursday. Photo: NSF/Team Veidekke

Thea Krokan Murud (NOR) earned the silver medal in the womens 5km skate race at the FIS U23 World Championships in Utah (USA) on Thursday. Photo: NSF/Team Veidekke

Medals and Podiums by the Bucket

 

 

Barbro Kvaale (NOR) won both gold and silver medals at the 2015 FIS U23 World Championships in Almaty (KAZ) this weekend. Photo: FIS

 

Madshus racers shine in both the short and the long runs, bagging hardware and podiums both at the U23 World Championships and the IBU Biathlon World Cup.

 

At the U23 World Championships in Alamaty, Kazakhstan, Madshus cross-country skier Barbro Kvaale (NOR) sweeps up the medals. On Thursday, Kvaale earned the gold medal in the women’s 10km freestyle event, and continued with silver in the 7.5km+7.5km skiathlon on Saturday.

 

Kvaale also placed 7th in the opening classic sprint on Tuesday.

 

Straight to the Podium on First Attempt
Madshus biathlete Marte Olsbu helped Norway to second place in the first-ever single mixed relay World Cup this weekend.

 

The single mixed relay brings a new dimension to the sport for both the teams and fans.

 

“We wanted to present one more team event where nations with only one good male and female athlete could have a strong chance for top rankings,” said Borut Nunar, who is the IBU World Cup Race Director.

 

A team consists of a woman and a man, with the woman skiing 6K and the man skiing 7.5K.

 

“This is an attractive, short biathlon competition, with short loops and each athlete shooting four times,” Nunar said.

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Marte Olsbu helped Norway to 2nd place in the very first IBU World Cup single mixed relay on Friday. Photo: Nordic Focus

 

The format for the new relay competition is as follows:
Each team competing in the single mixed relay is comprised of one woman and one man.

 

The woman starts and after shooting both prone and standing tags off to the man in a hand-over area located just after the penalty loop. The male competitor then shoots both prone and standing and tags off to the same woman again. Each competitor on the team completes four bouts of shooting and the associated ski loops.

 

After the final bout of shooting by the male competitor he skis the 1.5 km course and goes to the finish.

 

Lapped competitors will be stopped when they pass the penalty loop timing point after being lapped. The penalty loop for this competition is 75 meters in length. All other rules and procedures for relays apply to the single mixed relay.

 

Pre-Worlds next
The IBU World Cup now moves to Holmenkollen (NOR) for the next World Cup round. This event also serves as the Pre-World Championships, as Holmenkollen is hosting the 2016 IBU World Championships next year.

 

Madshus biathlete Ole Einar Bjoerndalen (NOR) is sitting out this week’s races in favor of training at altitude, which is a step to prepare for the 2015 IBU World Championships in Kontiolahti (FIN) on March 3-15. Both Bjoerndalen and fellow Madshus biathlete Emil Hegle Svendsen (NOR) are preselected for the Norwegian National team squad racing at the IBU World Championships in Finland.

 

 

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