OtherRacingFirst in the World

FasterSkierNovember 17, 2006

Bjorgen, Gjomle and Solli became the first women to double-pole the entire course in a classic sprint race.

Editor's note: We are not sure if the claim of being the first women to double-pole a classic race is accurate. We assume that they mean national or international-level events that include variable terrain (not street sprints). FasterSkier.com readers, please comment below if you know about other female skiers who might have done this.

All the girls did however switch to skis with kick-wax for the heats, while many of the boys continued to double-pole (without kick-wax) in the heats.

It was in retrospect kick-wax that was the right choice in Friday’s race. Jens Arne Svartedal waxed and won. Eldar Rœnning and Øystein Pettersen double-poled in to 2nd and 3rd place.

Marit Bjœrgen felt it was worth trying.

– We felt for trying it, but it wasn’t an advantage (today), said Marit Bjœrgen

Because while Bjœrgen, Gjœmle and Solli double-poled – Astrid U. Jacobsen won the prolog with kick wax. But the three skiers without kick-wax weren’t far behind and placed 2, 3 and 4.

Here is the difference between the four:
1. Astrid Uhrenholdt Jacobsen 2:42.98 0.00
2. Guro Strœm Solli 2:42.99 +0.01
3. Marit Bjœrgen 2:46.14 +3.16
4. Ella Gjœmle 2:48.48 +5.50

Is this a sign that the girls are getting stronger or are the courses getting easier?

– We are getting stronger. We are training more and are constantly getting stronger, that’s a challenge to the course designers, says Bjorgen.

I feel the same as Jens Arne Svartedal, the racers are two years ahead of the course designers, said Gjomle.

Why did you decide to try this now?

– The opening race felt like the right place. You don’t test this out in a World Cup race first. We talked about it and decided to do it together, said Gjomle. .

She is convinced that it was an advantage to ski with kick-wax — because it was very tiring to double-pole.

– It was hard, but now we have tried it.

Gjomle doesn’t believe that you’ll see lots of double-pole only among women later this season either.

– The only classic sprint race before Christmas is in Kuusamo, and that course is supposedly too hard for double-pole only.

Source: Langrenn.com

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