FALUN, Sweden (March 22) — World Cup champions Mathias Fredriksson of Sweden and Norway's Bente Skari won the final races of the season Saturday, capturing a skiathlon at the Swedish Ski Games.
Fredriksson won the men's race, a 10-km classic leading into a 10-km freestyle, in 57:17.0 with Frode Estil of Norway second at 57:34.1. Kris Freeman (Andover, NH) was 31st in 58:35.7 with Andrew Johnson (Greensboro, VT) 48th and Carl Swenson (Boulder, CO) 71st.
Skari led from the start in the women's 5+5, finishing in 32:30.2 for her 14th victory of the season with Germany's Evi Sachenbacher second (32:38.0). Beckie Scott finished 14th, while Sara Renner was 33rd. Wendy Wasgner (Park City, UT), the lone U.S. woman in the race, was 56th.
This race capped Beckie Scott's best World Cup season yet. She finished 9th in the World Cup, 10th in the sprint World Cup. And though she did not quite accomplish her goal of medaling at the World Championships, she did have four top ten finishes in Val di Fiemme, which is a great achievement in itself.
The men’s 4X10k mix cross-country relay in Falun on Sunday came down to 7 teams on the last 10k skate leg, on the last 5k in it came down to 5 teams, ending in sprint.
Sweden and Joergen Brink got revenge from Val di Fiemme, easily beating Italy and Zorzi for the victory.
Germany with Teichmann finished 3rd with Norway 4th, Tore Ruud Hofstad skied the last leg for Norway, a task Thomas Alsgaard has served well the last 8 years.
Alsgaard skied his last international event on Saturday.
After winning the last relay of the season on Sunday in Falun, Sweden passed Norway and won the cross-country men’s nations cup standings in the 2002/2003 cross-country season.
Germany won the women's relay, ahead of Norway and Italy.
Norway won the women’s standings and also recorded a very clear overall victory (men and women combined).
This report was compiled with material from wintersport.as, fis-ski.com, and ussa.org