I can’t keep up on the enormous number of good young skiers from every nation. I have a hard enough time with just those in my own backyard, the US and Canada. So it’s fun to look at some folks from other countries that I’m not so familiar with. For instance, here are some graphs looking at some good young male skiers from Finland. I’m using ‘cohort’ style graphs; they compare an athletes FIS points at a particular age to the range of FIS points achieved by skiers in the past that have gone on to achieve top ten results at WC, WSC or OWG races. (Remember, of course, that FIS points have plenty of limitations, and I calculate them slightly differently that FIS. For instance, I select people’s best results from a season, not from a calendar year.)
First, here are five young Finnish men who had strong distance results last season (click for full version):
Obviously, one wants to be at or below the shaded region, ideally. But those shaded regions don’t represent everyone who was ever successful, so it’s certainly possible to buck the trend and be a late bloomer. It just happens less frequently. Perttu Hyvarinen certainly seems promising. Sami Lahdemaki does as well, despite a slight uptick in his results last season.
To go along with this, here are five good young Finnish sprinters; again, FIS points for sprinting are only measuring qualification speed: