Norway’s Northug Still Questionable For Kuusamo World Cup

Inge ScheveNovember 22, 2010

Petter Northug will more than likely sit out the second World Cup weekend, but the start lists could feature few Norwegians at all. According to Norwegian national team directer Aage Skinstad, if the temperatures drop below minus 18 Celcius, the Norwegians will not be competing. Frigid temperatures are quite likely on the courses in Rukantturi, north of Kuusamo. Some predict as low as 25 C to 29 C below, at which point there would be no races at all.

The “Tour de Opening” begins with a sprint on Friday, continues with a distance race on Saturday, and concludes with a pursuit on Sunday.  The predicted cold can cause problems for the skiers, and Northug is no fan of cold temperatures.

”We won’t take any chances. Petter has to get entirely well before we let him race, and that can take some time,” said John Northug, Petter’s father and manager, to

The Norwegian team headed to Kuusamo also includes Kristin Stormer Steira, who raced the World Cup opener in Gällivare (SWE). She has been fighting stubborn foot injuries all through the summer and dryland season, and is still not 100 percent recovered. She reports feeling the injury more when classic skiing than in skating. As for the men’s team, both of the Norwegian wild cards from Gällivare, Sjur Rohte and Chris Jespersen, will be given another chance to prove themselves in Kuusamo.

Norway’s team in Kuusamo:

Women – Kari Vikhagen Gjeitnes, Celine Brun-Lie, Ingvild Flugstad Ostberg, Maiken Caspersen Falla, Therese Johaug, Marthe Kristoffersen, Marit Bjorgen, Vibeke Skofterud and Astrid U. Jacobsen.

Men – Ola Vigen Hattestad, Johan Kjolstad, Oystein Pettersen, John Kristian Dahl, Martin Johnsrud Sundby, Simen Ostensen, Eldar Ronning, Kristian Tettli Rennemo, Chris Jespersen, Sjur Rothe and Petter Northug jr (grandfathered spot as reigning the World Cup champion).

From, November 22, 2010. By Kjell-Erik Kristiansen, translation by Inge Scheve

Inge Scheve

Inge is FasterSkier's international reporter, born and bred in Norway. A cross-country ski racer and mountain runner, she also dabbles on two wheels in the offseason. If it's steep and long, she loves it. Follow her on Twitter: @IngeScheve.

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