Queen of Cross-Country Sprint — on a “lousy” salary?

FasterSkierMarch 16, 2004

Marit Bjoergen — 23 years old – celebrated last weekend after her seventh straight World Cup Sprint victory. The World Cup trophy is now hers to keep, after outclassing her competitors. Last weekend’s final victory in Pragelato, Italy, netted her about $20,000 — adding up her sponsorship bonuses and the FIS price money.

Had she been an alpine skier, five miles up the hill from Pragelato, in Sestrieres, her win would have put about 10 times more money into her bank account.

The winner of a men’s Alpine World Cup race makes about $150,000 per race victory (prize money plus sponsor victory bonuses), the alpine women a little less. However, in the alpine discipline, the overall season World Cup victory is royally paid.

“I get paid price money and bonuses from sponsors for each race, but nothing from winning the overall season title. This is the way it is in the Cross-Country discipline”, says Bjoergen after using her leg speed to demolish the women’s field in seven out of eight Sprint races this year.


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