RacingWorld CupFredriksson not interested in reconciliation meeting with Northug

FasterSkier FasterSkierFebruary 14, 2007

Swedish skier Thobias Fredriksson is not interested in a reconciliation meeting with Petter Northug following heated exchange after Northug’s takedown of Fredriksson in recent World Cup sprint finale, reports Norwegian newspaper VG.

See VG story with photo of the crash at http://www.vg.no/pub/vgart.hbs?artid=152139

The Norwegian men’s head coach Morten Aa Djupvik tried to initiate a meeting between Northug and Fredriksson in order to “move on”, but the Swedish skier was not interested in such a meeting.

– I have other things to use my energy on, said Fredriksson to Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet on Tuesday.

The two countries coaches and athletes have been fighting a verbal war since the New year’s eve Tour de Ski sprint finale in Munich where Petter Northug (NOR) was overly aggressive and took down both Thobias Fredriksson (SWE) and his own team-mate Oystein Pettersen in a crash.

Fredriksson asked for someone to “calm down” Northug following the race and characterized Northug as “totally out of control”. Northug retaliated by calling Fredriksson fat and that started the controversy.

– The actual quote was by Northug was: — I tried to go around him, but he is big, almost half-fat.

Norwegian men’s coach Morten Aa Djupvik tried to initiate a meeting between the two nations yesterday, but Fredriksson said politely no.

– I don’t know why I should have a meeting with Northug. They can do whatever they desire. I’m using my enery to perform. If he has anything to say, then do it. I won’t use my energy if he won’t, says Fredriksson.

Djupvik feels that this is ”strange”

– We are not doing this in order to decide who’s at fault. It’s about moving on, and start with a clean page in Sapporo. It’s too bad, says Djupvik.

Another rebel

The relationship between the two nations didn’t improve when the Swedish Team’s Norwegian coach, Inge Braaten said this about Norwegian skier Simen Ostensen after the sprint in Otepaa: – It’s (expletive) too bad that another young, inexperienced Norwegian is ruining for the Swedes.

– It’s often heated emotions in sport. It’s important to be able to shake hands afterwards and move on, says Djupvik.

Djupvik said that he had personally not talked to Fredriksson and didn’t want to say more at this point.

The VG newspaper had not been able to get Braaten’s comments as of Tuesday.

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