Rybinsk, Russia – The Russian men’s team swept the podium, and placed six in the top-10 in the 30km pursuit,
Artem Zhmurko won his first-ever World Cup race, following up on his strong 9th last weekend in Otepaa.
Zhmurko won a tight sprint consisting of seven men. He also claimed an addition 25 World Cup points by winning one intermediate sprint, and finishing second in another.
“I’m so happy about my first place!” said Zhmurko. “The classic part was quite hard for me, but I tried to keep up. Free technique went better. I stayed in the leading group all the time and managed to go ahead at the finish. I had no special tactic, I just tried to ski as fast as possible.”
Despite his recent strong of good results, Zhmurko did not qualify for the Russian Olympic team, named after the race.
Ilia Chernousov finished 2nd, just .9 seconds back, claiming his first World Cup podium.
Places 3-7 were all decide by the photo finish camera. Sergej Shriaev claimed 3rd, .1 seconds in front of Rene Sommerfeldt (GER). Sommerfeldt also scored a total of 30 World Cup points in the intermediate sprints.
Canadian Graham Nishikawa finished 17th in the small field of 22 skiers. He also won the first intermediate sprint, gaining 15 World Cup points. The effort obviously cost him as he fell off the pace and finished just over four minutes back.
Topher Sabot is the editor of FasterSkier.