Seventy year old Norwegian skier Jorgen Kvale is traveling around the World to participate in ski races. This winter he will get the anniversary bib number 150.000 on his chest in the popular Marcialonga race in Italy.
– That’s exciting. Very exciting, said Kvale when he was told about getting the unusual bib number 150,000. Kvale has raced Marcialonga six times before. The first time was the third year the race was held. This year’s race is the 32nd consecutive. The fit 70-year old still has clear goals for the race.
– I want to ski as well as possible. I hope to finish under five and a half hour and that I don’t experience kick wax problems going up the last long uphill, says Kvale. The race will this year as last year is held in the classic style.
Kvale hopes however that the organizers in the future will change the race to freestyle (skating).
– I like skating better, especially in Marcialonga where the course is pretty easy. Not having to worry about the kick at the end would also be nice.
Kvale has other ambitions this season besides the Marcialonga. He has in the past completed three rounds of the World-loppet. That involves completing at least 10 out of the 14 World-loppet races in the same season. A minimum of one race has to be done on a different continent. Kvale plans to do this again this season at age 70.
– I’m planning to race in the Czech Republic, USA, Canada and Italy. I’m also racing the Swedish Vasaloppet and the Norwegian Birkie. I will also do the Norwegian â€œBirkie Tripleâ€ by racing it on skis, foot and bike in the same season.
– I’m retired and have time for this, says Kvale. Last year he raced In Australia and did a pretty unique round trip in Europe as well.
– I experienced many new things. Last year we were six men from six different nations with six different languages that drove around in Europe in two cars and participated in ski races. We started in the Czech Republic, continued to Austria, then to Italy and Germany. We did six races that month, explains Kvale.
It’s nothing wrong with his motivation.
—I’m doing this because I’m enjoying it. I have no ambitions to win (my age group), but like to be in good shape.
He is for that reason training quite a bit and planned to ski for the first time this season last weekend at Beitostolen, the site of last season’s regular World Cup opener.