Vasaloppet Champion Svard Is Not Afraid Of The Norwegians

FasterSkierMarch 3, 2004

Sweden’s Oscar Svard, Daniel Tynell and Henrik Eriksson can brag about something no currently active Norwegian top skiers can be proud of — they have all won the World largest and most prestigious ski marathon, the 90 kilometer long classic style Swedish Vasaloppet. Here is a recent interview from Swedish

Not afraid of the Norwegians


Oscar Svard is back on the ski tracks. He is not afraid after seeing all the pre-race talk about Norwegians, French and Italian skiers. You can count on the fact that last years winner is planning on fighting them all.

Most of the last weeks writing in the European ski press has been focused on the Norwegians push for a win and their chances coming into the 80th Swedish Vasaloppet. Anders Aukland, Jorgen Aukland and Anders Hallingstad have gotten lots of media attention.

The 2003 Vasaloppet winner Oscar Svard has seen the TV and newspaper interviews from his home in Ostersund.

“It’s not important to me to be seen and heard ahead of the race. The most important is to cross the finish line first for the second year in a row. It’s interesting that the media is focusing on everyone else (but me), but not a disadvantage.

“I don’t mind at all that my competitors are getting some added pressure,” laughs Svard.

His recovery following the concussion that he got in the Marcialonga race, that forced him to rest for ten days, has gone according to the plan.

“Yes, I have been training as much as I could handle and won both the Jarnforan and the Skinnarloppet races. I’m still a little behind the shape I was in ahead of last years Vasaloppet, but should be there in a week from now (this interview was made last week). I’m planning my peak ahead of the most important and fun race of the year, the Vasaloppet.”

Svard skied away from the pack early in the recent Jarnforan race and won by a margin of five minutes. The second place finisher was 17th in last years Vasaloppet.

“I was a little tired ahead of Skinnarloopet and was also setting the track for the skiers behind me due to 1-2 centimeter of new snow in the tracks,” said Svard.

He still won.
Svard will be focusing on testing skis and wax the last week ahead of the race.

“You don’t win this race without good equipment. I have good skis which I trust,” says the long distance expert Svard.

Svard has respect for the Norwegian Aukland brothers, but remember well how it ended last year when it also was supposed to end with Norwegian victory. That didn’t happen thanks to him.

“I know that I have capacity to win this year’s race and to beat the Norwegians. I don’t need to walk around and be concerned about anyone. I know that it’s going to be very tough not only against the Norwegians. Don’t forget Stanislav Rezac of the Check Republic. He is dangerous. The one that has impressed me the most lately is however Daniel Tynell. To win the Bessemerloppet by eight minutes was impressive. The 2002 winner will be tough. I think us Swedes will give anyone a good fight. I’m not planning on giving an inch or anything easy. You can count on that.”

All three Swedish skiers are using Swedish made PRO-SKI rollerskis in their training preparations. The following information on Svard and Tynell’s training is provided by PRO-SKI and the US importer TorbjornSport ( ) .


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