Canada’s high-performance cross-country ski team continued to show they are one of the best sprinting nations in the world on Saturday as two Canadian men combined to finish ninth in a team sprint relay at a World Cup competition in Lahti, Finland.
After watching Beckie Scott battle back into the top-5, and post her best result of the season on Friday, two Canadian men’s teams made their way to the start line trying to build off Scott’s success.
Chris Jeffries, 26, of Chelsea, Que., and George Grey, 24, of Rossland, B.C., who teamed up to form Canada I, made their way through the 6 x 1-kilometre relay in a time of 13:21.1 to finish in ninth and become the seventh fastest nation on the day. Each team consists of two athletes who both complete the course three times.
While Jeffries and Grey have been gaining some valuable experience on the World Cup circuit since January, they welcomed two young teammates last week as Devon Kershaw, 21, of Sudbury, Ont., and Drew Goldsack, 22, of Red Deer, Alta., made their debuts in Europe on the circuit. The young Canadian duo, which finished third at the Under-23 World Championships in the team sprint relay, suited up in Finland for just their second event ever on the World Cup and finished 19h (13:30.1).
Russia I sprinted to gold in a field loaded with international talent, posting a time of 12:56.2. Sweden II settled for the silver after finishing just five one hundredths of a second (12:56.7) behind the Russian duo. Norway I rounded out the top three after crossing the line with a time of 12:57.0.
Norway's Ella Gjoemle and Hilde G. Pedersen beat Finland-1 by 1.5 seconds in the women's 6x1K relay. The Canadian women did not race.
No Americans raced in either the men's or the women's event.
The Finnish Ski Games conclude Sunday with a men's 15K classic and women's 10K CL race. The competition will be the final event in Finland before the team heads to Italy for the World Cup Finals next week.
Source: Cross Country Canada