NewsBjœrn Dæhlie finishes 16th in Tartu Ski Marathon

FasterSkier FasterSkierFebruary 13, 2003

Bjœrn Dæhlie skied yet another impressive comeback race last weekend in a Estonian Worldloppet race. The 35 year-old finished 16 in the 63-kilometer Tartu Marathon, against a competitive field of both Worldloppet and World Cup skiers. “I used a little extra kick wax,” Dæhlie told Norway’s Dagbladet newspaper. “It cost me a little glide, but it was good to have.”

Jorgen Aukland won yet another Worldloppet race, beating Stanislav Rezac of the Czech Republic. Yet it is worth noting that Dæhlie finished only a few minutes behind such elite skiers as Espen Bjervig. The race had quite a lot of double-pole sections, yet Dæhlie reported no problems with his back. A back injury was what ultimately forced Dæhlie to retire from competition two years ago.

Bjœrn is now considering participating in more ski races, namely the Engadin race in Switzerland this March. But he is also quick to dismiss any speculation of an earnest comeback to the world’s top level. “The way I have things now, there will not be time for something like that. But I want to stay in good shape, and this is a great way to do it,” Bjœrn told Dagbladet’s reporters. According to Dæhlie’s friends, he has trained far more than most recreational athletes so far this winter.

The paper also reported that Dæhlie spent the day before the race on a wild boar hunt, arranged by the Estonian importers of his clothing collection. He shot two boars, one of which weighing over 150 kilograms (about 340 pounds). Dæhlie told reporters that he is far more likely to prioritize hunting trips like this before any serious training efforts.

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