US Ski Team veteran Carl Swenson continued his mastery of long
skate races today in the Nor Am Continental Cup race outside of Rossland,
BC. On the women's side junior skier Kristina Trygstad-Saari won her first
Continental Cup race, beating out two skate distance specialists in the
This weekends races were moved to the Paulsen Cross Country trails about
30 minutes from Rossland because of lack of snow in town. Instead of a
sprint on Saturday followed by a 30/15K Classic on Sunday, the races were
changed to 30/15K Skate on Saturday and a 10/5K Classic on Sunday.
Swenson, who is always considered a favorite in skate races of any distance,
managed to take the win in today's 30 freestyle, ahead of Kris Freeman,
who has finished in the top two in the last four Continental Cup races.
Swenson was 18 seconds ahead of Freeman, but both of them were 1:45 ahead
of the rest of the skiers. Lars Flora was third, Andrew Johnson 4th, and
David Chamberlain 5th.
The real story of the day was Kristina Trygstad-Saari of Bozeman, MT
taking the win in the women's 15K race. Trygstad-Saari has been a top
junior skier for a few years now, and today she proved she could ski with
the best in North America. In the process, she beat out Jeannie Wall,
the 2002 Birkie Champion and also from Bozeman, by five seconds, and beat
another long distance specialist – Sarah Conrad – by 18 seconds. Daria
Gaiazova (CAN – JR) was 4th, and Tasha Betcherman (CAN) was 5th.