COLERAINE, Minn. (Jan. 18) – Bitter, biting cold and wind (-15 F., -35 wind chill) forced a four-hour delay in SuperTour races Sunday at Mount Itasca before U.S. Development Team skier Chris Cook (Rhinelander, WI) and Norwegian college student Sigrid Aas skied off with the freestyle-technique races.
Cook won the men's 10K FR in 24:11.6 with recent Canadian immigrant Ivan Babikov second in 24:31.3. Chad Giese (St. Paul, MN), an early leader in the four-lap race and still a contender for the SuperTour title, took third with a time of 24:38.5.
In the women's 5K race, Aas – who skis for the University of Alaska-Fairbanks – simply out-skied everyone, winning by an amazing 51 seconds – timed in 13:53.3 with Canadian Madeleine Williams second (14:44.5). Third place went to another UAF racer, Johanna Turunen, in 14:47.0.
The SuperTour moves from Mount Itasca on to Telemark resort in northern Wisconsin for SuperTour Finals, which begin Wednesday and continue through the weekend.
The SuperTour champions will compete in the final World Cup races at Holmenkollen in Oslo, at the Finnish Ski Games in Lahti, and World Cup Finals in Pregelato, Italy — the 2006 Olympic venue. Dave Chamberlain (Bethel, ME), who was hit by back spasms in Sunday's sub-zero weather and finished 14th, leads the men's points list but needs results in the three final races to hold off Giese. Rebecca Dussault (Gunnison, CO), who won four SuperTour races at Soldier Hollow in December and then five more in Maine (including three at the Chevrolet U.S. championships in Rumford), has clinched the women's title.Sigrid Aas had a dominating performance today, winning the 5K freestyle by 51 seconds over Ontario's Madeleine Williams. Third place was Johanna Turner.