One of the most important dry land season tests for Cross-Country skiers, Saku Suverull 2007 was held at the Tehvandi sports center in OtepÃ¤Ã¤ (EST) last weekend. The 10th edition of Saku Suverull roller ski races attracted competitors from 15 nations to evaluate their summer racing shape. A new program with sprint and distance races on consecutive days and with renovated tracks, the weekend drew a crowd of 4,000 to enjoy the event and summery conditions.
The winner of the men’s classical sprint race was Eldar Roenning (NOR) who prevailed ahead of another sprinting star Thobias Fredriksson (SWE) and 22-year old Finnish hopeful, Matias Strandvall. In the ladies’ race, Natalia Matveyeva took the victory ahead of two of her country mates as the Russians dominated the race.
In Saturday’s two-part distance race — the first section in the free technique (ladies 10 km/men 15 km), followed by a handicap start classical race (ladies 12 km and men 20 km) – the Russian team continued its strong showing. In the ladies’ race, Natalia Korosteleva was the fastest, ahead of her 22-year-old team mate Julia Ivanova. In the men’s race, 2006 Olympic champion Eugeni Dementiev (also RUS) started the second leg with a clear lead after the free-style race, and kept his position from start to finish. The 2005 sprint world champion Vassili Rotchev (RUS) produced the most powerful sprint among the chase group and finished second.