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A Buffalo On Tour: Du Pasquier Uses Military Service Requirement to Hit the World Cup

Arnaud Du Pasquier, a Swiss member of Colorado University's 2014 NCAA Championships squad, competing in the 15 k classic World Cup in Davos, Switzerland, on Saturday. Du Pasquier is using Switzerland's obligatory military service requirement to ski full-time this year.

Arnaud Du Pasquier, a member of Colorado University’s 2014 squad to NCAA Championships, will be a senior next year. For now, though, he’s taking a year to complete his mandatory military service in his native Switzerland – which he’s doing by skiing full-time, including in the Nations Group at the Davos World Cups.

Despite Slow World Cup Start, Gregg Optimistic and Working Toward World Champs

Caitlin Gregg (Team Gregg) skiing to 56th place in the Davos World Cup 10 k classic, Dec. 13. (Photo: Toko)

American Caitlin Gregg had big plans to before heading to the World Cup this winter as the SuperTour leader, with qualification for World Championships at the top of the list. Disappointed in her results the last two weekends, she’s got one more World Cup weekend then will try to make a statement at U.S. nationals.

Weekend Roundup: ‘Way More is Possible’

Tim Burke on his way to 25th in the IBU World Cup 12.5 k pursuit on Sunday in Hochfilzen, Austria. (Photo: USBA/NordicFocus)

Catch up on what you may have missed this weekend, as nordic competitions across the globe are begging to heat up. Here, we recap everything from biathlon in Austria to the cross country World Cup in Switzerland and everything in between.

Hanneman, Disappointed But Undeterred, Takes World Cup Experience into World Champs Quest

Reese Hanneman racing the World Cup in Kuusamo, Finland. Photo: Toko.

It’s tough to swallow getting destroyed by Norwegians week after week. Reese Hanneman is still absorbing a huge jump in training hours from the summer and fall, but also: “I think people really underestimate how hard it is to go from racing well in the U.S. to racing well here on the World Cup.”

Notes and Quotes: Davos World Cup Sprint

Andy Newell (l) of the USST trails eventual 3rd place finisher Erik Brandsdal of Norway (r) and Alexey Petukhov of Russia (c) who eventually finished fourth in the 1.3 k freestyle sprint in Davos, Switzerland. (Photo: Fischer/Nordic Focus)

Check out the quotes that didn’t make it into our race reports this weekend, from FasterSkier’s on-site coverage from the Davos World Cup 1.3 k sprint.

Østberg Skis Big for First World Cup Victory in Davos Sprint

Ingvild Flugstad Østberg racing to fifth in her first FIS race of the season, the 10 k skate on Nov. 22 in Beitostølen, Norway. (Photo: Inge Scheve)

Which Norwegian and by how much? That seems to be the ongoing question in the beginning of the 2014/2015 World Cup season, with Norwegian dominance for both the men and women since the first race in Ruka, Finland. Sunday in Davos, Switzerland, it was Ingvild Flugstad Østberg who came out on top in the 1.3 k freestyle sprint – and it wasn’t even close.

U.S. Women Chalk Up ‘Good’, But Not Great, Day as Sargent Leads in 16th

Sargent on her way to qualifying 15th at the World Cup skate sprint on Jan. 18 in Szklarska Poreba, Poland. She went on to finish 13th then notch a career-best distance result of ninth in the 10 k classic sprint the next day. (Photo: Fischer/NordicFocus)

Three women in the quarterfinals and one just barely outside? U.S. Ski Team coach Matt Whitcomb was thrilled with Ida Sargent’s and Sophie Caldwell’s quarterfinal appearances and pleased to see Kikkan Randall a bit more like herself, he also stayed realistic: “I wouldn’t use any other word that celebrates it more than [good].”

Newell 15th in Davos: ‘I Want to Show People What We’re Capable Of’

DAVOS, Switzerland— “I’ve been feeling pretty good this season,” U.S. Ski Team veteran Andy Newell says after the finish of today’s skate sprint. “I think I was carrying a little bit of fatigue just from the fall training, but still […]

A Long Road Back, But Finally Valjas Makes It: 13th in Davos Skate Sprint

Lenny Valjas during the Frozen Thunder classic sprint on Oct. 24 in Canmore, Alberta, in which he placed eighth. "I've had a huge training load this fall and was feeling pretty tired in Canmore for the Frozen Thunder races," he wrote in an email after Saturday's FIS classic sprint in Gallivare. "I felt strong today in the race, like my old fast self." (Photo: Angus Cockney)

It has been a year and a half since Lenny Valjas last made an appearance in World Cup sprint heats. Let that sink in. The tall Canadian is thrilled that not only is he back and feeling like himself, but he didn’t just squeak in – he qualified tenth and missed a lucky loser spot in the semifinals by just 0.03 seconds.

Krogh Proves Superior in Davos Sprint, Earns First World Cup Victory

Finn Hågen Krogh lunging in Saturday's 10 k freestyle individual start. He ended up second, just 2.2 seconds behind Norwegian teammate Martin Johnsrud Sundby. (Photo: Fischer/NordicFocus)

Finn Hågen Krogh had what he called a perfect race Sunday in Davos, Switzerland. After placing third in the qualification round of the 1.3 k freestyle sprint, the Norwegian rapidly progressed through his quarterfinal, semifinal, and ultimately the final to earn his first World Cup victory and another Norwegian podium sweep.

Photo Gallery: Men’s 15 k Classic in Davos

Pal Golberg (NOR), who later dropped out, leading Devon Kershaw (CAN), 32nd place.

Photos from an exciting day of World Cup racing in Davos, Switzerland. Take some lessons in classic technique from the best!

Photo Gallery: Women’s 10 k Classic in Davos

Petra Novakova (CZE), 35th place and the Helvetia U23 points leader, and Giulia Stuerz (ITA), 51st place.

Photos from an exciting day of World Cup racing in Davos, Switzerland. Take some lessons in classic technique from the best!

Harvey, Nishikawa Lead Canada with Top-30 Davos Distance Finishes

Canada's Emily Nishikawa on her way to a career-best 29th in the World Cup 10 k classic today in Davos, Switzerland. (Photo: Chelsea Little/FasterSkier)

Before Saturday, Canada’s Alex Harvey had never cracked the top 30 in a distance race in Davos, Switzerland, and Emily Nishikawa was shooting for her first career top-30. Both checked off those markers in the men’s and women’s classic distance races on the first day of the Davos World Cup.

Stephen, Focusing on Aggression, Snags Top-20 in Davos

stephen

Liz Stephen wants to ski like skiing really matters: “I was focused on that aggression, and wanting to win more than I’ve ever wanted to win.” That took her to 20th place in the 10 k classic, leading teammates Jessie Diggins and Sadie Bjornsen who all finished within a few seconds. Erik Bjornsen led the U.S. men in 48th place in the 15 k classic.

Sundby Takes Narrow Victory After Equipment Calculus, Decision to Stick to Classic Skis

Martin Johnsrud Sundby (NOR, left)  leading American skier Erik Bjornsen (bib 87) one lap into the 15 k classic in Davos.

Martin Johnsrud Sundby had 99% decided to use skate skis in today’s 15 k classic World Cup race in Davos. But then at the last second, he changed his mind. The choice worked, and he earned a 6.6-second win over teammate Didrik Tønseth. Dario Cologna went with skate skis and finished third.

Johaug Proves Her Classic Chops Are No Joke, Wins Another 10 k in Davos

Norway's Therese Johaug won her second World Cup race of the season on Friday in Davos, Switzerland, another 10 k classic and again by 42 seconds over teammate Marit Bjørgen. (Photo: FIS Cross Country/Twitter)

Whether Therese Johaug is a better skate or classic skier is more or less a moot point now that she’s claimed her second win of the season in another 10 k classic. Johaug beat teammate Marit Bjørgen by more than 42 seconds again on Saturday at the Davos World Cup to quiet anyone who doubted her in that distance technique.

Davos World Cup Still a Go Despite Lack of Snow, to Host La Clusaz Races as Well (Updated)

The Davos Organizing Committee is producing snow up high for the World Cup races this weekend. (Photo: Holly Brooks)

The World Cup races in Davos, Switzerland, have been shortened due to lack of snow, but the OC has been working hard, spending 70+ hours transporting snow from up high to the race course below. They host this weekend’s classic-distance races and freestyle sprints, as well as next weekend’s World Cup after the La Clusaz races were canceled.

Breaking: WADA To Launch Major Investigation of Russian Doping Allegations

WADA

A transcript (find a link inside) of the German documentary which exposed systematic doping in Russia reveals an even worse situation than imagined: how easy it is to purchase cheap EPO without a prescription; how Russian officials threaten that any athlete who goes to the press might “have an accident”. Plus, we talk to Lowell Bailey, Nathan Smith, and Max Cobb about the situation.

Wednesday Workout: Mini-Tour Recovery with Alex Harvey

Alex Harvey (r) of Canada leads (r-l) Russian Mixim Vylegzhanin, Dario Cologna of Switzerland, and Evgeniy Belov of Russia in Sunday's 15 k classic pursuit in Lillehammer, Norway. He finished in 10th position in the mini tour.  (Photo: Fischer/Nordic Focus)

What does a World Cup racer do after, say, a mini tour for recovery? We asked Canada’s Alex Harvey, who placed 10th overall in last weekend’s Lillehammer triple. He opted for an hour-and-15-minute run on Monday in Davos, led by coach Tor-Arne Hetland, who lives in Davos.

Weekly Roundup: Lillehammer Mini Tour, Östersund and Bozeman

A pumped Martin Johnsrud Sundby (Norway) after winning the men's 15 k classic pursuit for the overall Lillehammer mini-tour title on Sunday in Norway. (Photo: Fischer/NordicFocus)

The first individual IBU World Cup race took place a week ago in Östersund and wrapped up this past Sunday. Here, we recap everything from biathlon in Sweden and at home in Canmore, to the Lillehammer mini tour and nordic-combined competitions, and second U.S. SuperTour stop in Bozeman, Mont.