OtherRacingKoos Edges Newell, Valaas Triumphs in Tour of the Golden Heart Classic Sprints

FasterSkier FasterSkierMarch 27, 2008

Fairbanks ski fans were treated to some of the fastest sprint racing seen in North America this winter in the Tour of the Golden Heart Classic Sprints Wednesday afternoon and evening at Birch Hill. A crowd of several hundred cross country skiers and fans was treated to the excitement generated by sprint racing. Having the top sprinters in the country going head-to-head led to some very exciting racing on the 1.145Km course. Unfortunately, Kikkan Randall was unable to race due to a back injury. However, in her place, Laura Valaas proved a worthy winner, as did Torin Koos in edging out top-seed and fastest qualifier Andy Newell.

Top USST male racers double-poled the course in the qualifying round, but classic-skied in the heats. Torin Koos said that they went back-and-forth on which to do, but thought that they could generate more speed coming off the top of the final (second) climb going into the final downhill toward the finish if they were striding.

Koos beat Newell by 1-2 boot lengths with a good stretch at the finish, ahead of Vahur Teppan, a skier from UA Fairbanks who had competed for Estonia in the Canmore World Cup sprints in January. Bart Dengel just edged out Mike Sinnott by a slightly narrower margin in the “B” final.

Valaas won by half a ski length over Norweigan Sigrid Aas – Aas's first loss since arriving in Fairbanks last week. Junior National Sprint Champion Amy Glen was an impressive third in the final, and Martina Stursova a distant fourth. Kate Ronsse, Liz Stephen and Kristina Trygstad-Saari were all within 1.2 seconds in the “B” final, but the places were clear.

Alaska junior coaches Peter Leonard (FXC) and Ja Dorris (ANR) canvassed the crowd between the semifinals and finals to raise some prize money for the winners. Valaas and Koos both took home $275 from the winners-take-all pot.

Temperatures for the event were in the mid-to-high teens when qualifying rounds started at 5:00PM, but they cooled down to around 10 during the heats as the sun started to drop. The final heat ended just before 8:00PM, with still plenty of daylight – didn't need to use the lights.

Racing continues on Friday with the 15/30km US National Championship Duathlon.

Article on the classic sprint from the Fairbanks Daily News Miner:
Koos, Valaas eke out victories in sprint race

Men's Heats
Final A
1. Torin Koos;
2. Andrew Newell;
3. Vahur Teppan;
4. Lars Flora;
5. Christopher Cook;
6. Marius Korthauer;
Final B
1. Bart Dengel;
2. Mike Sinnott;
3. Bryan Cook;
4. Tyson Flaharty;
5. Henri Soom;
6. Einar Often;
Semifinal 2
1. Torin Koos;
2. Marius Korthauer;
3. Vahur Teppan;
4. Mike Sinnott;
5. Henri Soom;
6. Bryan Cook;
Semifinal 1
1. Andrew Newell;
2. Christopher Cook;
3. Lars Flora;
4. Bart Dengel;
5. Tyson Flaharty;
6. Einar Often;
Quarterfinal 4
1. Vahur Teppan;
2. Bryan Cook;
3. Mike Sinnott;
4. Jeff Ellis;
5. Brian Gregg;
6. Robert Pakk;
Quarterfinal 3
1. Torin Koos;
2. Marius Korthauer;
3. Henri Soom;
4. Colin Rodgers;
5. Reese Hanneman;
6. Galen Johnston;
Quarterfinal 2
1. Christopher Cook;
2. Bart Dengel;
3. Einar Often;
4. Anders Haugen;
5. Peter Kling;
6. Ray Sabo;
Quarterfinal 1
1. Andrew Newell;
2. Lars Flora;
3. Tyson Flaharty;
4. David Norris;
5. Eric Packer;
6. Tyler Kornfeld;
===================
Women's Heats
Final A
1. Laura Valaas;
2. Sigrid Aas;
3. Amy Glen;
4. Martina Stursova;
Final B
1. Katie Ronsse;
2. Elizabeth Stephen;
3. Kristina Trygstad-Saari;
4. Kate Fitzgerald;
Semifinal 2
1. Sigrid Aas;
2. Amy Glen;
3. Elizabeth Stephen;
4. Kristina Trygstad-Saari;
Semifinal 1
1. Laura Valaas;
2. Martina Stursova;
3. Katie Ronsse;
4. Kate Fitzgerald;
Quarterfinal 4
1. Amy Glen;
2. Kristina Trygstad-Saari;
3. Krynn Finstad;
4. Kryston McPhetres;
Quarterfinal 3
1. Sigrid Aas;
2. Elizabeth Stephen;
3. Hanna Gillis;
4. Kate Pearson Arduser;
Quarterfinal 2
1. Laura Valaas;
2. Katie Ronsse;
3. Alyson McPhetres;
4. Marisa Rorabaugh;
Quarterfinal 1
1. Martina Stursova;
2. Kate Fitzgerald;
3. Heather Edic;
4. Olivia Karns;

===========================

Men – Overall
1. Torin Koos;
2. Andrew Newell;
3. Vahur Teppan;
4. Lars Flora;
5. Christopher Cook;
6. Marius Korthauer;
7. Bart Dengel;
8. Mike Sinnott;
9. Bryan Cook;
10. Tyson Flaharty;
11. Henri Soom;
12. Einar Often;
13. Anders Haugen;
14. Colin Rodgers;
15. David Norris;
16. Jeff Ellis;
17. Brian Gregg;
18. Eric Packer;
19. Reese Hanneman;
20. Peter Kling;
21. Ray Sabo;
22. Robert Pakk;
23. Galen Johnston;
24. Tyler Kornfeld;
————————–
Did not qualify for heats:
————————–
25. Owen W Hanley;
26. Noah Brautigam;
27. Jordan Buetow;
28. Eric Hoffman;
29. Matt Briggs;
30. Trent Semmens;
31. Alex Morris;
32. Bobby Miller;
33. Erin Phillips;
34. Logan Hanneman;
35. Donald Haering;
36. William Coleman;
37. Ian Wilkinson;
38. Nick Ferree;
39. Kelsey Boyer;
40. Wyatt Mayo;
41. Robert Hovda;
42. Eric Ryan;
43. Jacob Remington;
44. Steven Bender;
45. Abe Schmidt;
46. Patrick Nugent;
47. Simon Gilliland;
48. Stefan Hajdukovich;
49. Taylor Bearden;

===========================

Women – Overall
1. Laura Valaas;
2. Sigrid Aas;
3. Amy Glen;
4. Martina Stursova;
5. Katie Ronsse;
6. Elizabeth Stephen;
7. Kristina Trygstad-Saari;
8. Kate Fitzgerald;
9. Heather Edic;
10. Krynn Finstad;
11. Alyson McPhetres;
12. Hanna Gillis;
13. Marisa Rorabaugh;
14. Kryston McPhetres;
15. Kate Pearson Arduser;
16. Olivia Karns;
————————–
Did not qualify for heats:
————————–
17. Anna Rix;

Source: Nordic Ski Club of Fairbanks

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