RacingTour de SkiWorld CupFreeman Skis Stronger Today, Finishes Tour 43rd

FasterSkier FasterSkierJanuary 8, 20121

VAL DI FIEMME, Italy – Kris Freeman (USA) raced to a poor result yesterday, consistent with his highly variable season, finishing the day in 55th place, and losing his hopes of a respectable Tour de Ski finish. He vowed, however to finish the event, completing the 9th stage and crossing the finish line on the Alpe de Cermis.

“Yesterday, any sensible person would’ve dropped out, but I wanted to race today. ”

Freeman Cresting the Steeps of the Final Climb

He did just that, and had a much stronger day. Wearing bib 47, he finished the day in 43rd. He told FasterSkier that today’s race was “a lot better than yesterday. I wasn’t skiing great but at least I was racing today.”

He called his result “respectable,” posting the 22nd fastest time on the hill, and 32nd fastest time overall.

When Freeman crested the steepest section of the hill, with half a kilometer to go, he sat in a pack of 5 skiers.

He looked strong and solid, and yet other than several glances to this cohort, he seemed to be skiing alone.

Freeman on the Final Climb

He told FasterSkier, “I couldn’t react to anybody. I got into my rhythm, and that was my rhythm. I was able to sprint for about 50 meters at the end to pass a Belarussian.”

The American will now spend several weeks resting, recovering, and preparing for the Otepaa 15k classical individual start on January 22nd. “I’ve been classic skiing like a bag of crap this year, but it’s still my best event.”

 

 

Topher Sabot contributed reporting.

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    Tim Donahue

    January 8, 2012 at 11:35 pm

    Kris,

    In the high school classroom where I teach, I have a poster of you winning the U-23s (from 2003). We’re in New York City, so none of the kids really know what Nordic skiing is, but they can recognize commitment when they see the look on your face. If they whine about too much homework or the like, I’ll occasionally refer to this poster as a reminder of the strength that work can bring.

    Now, your age has nearly flip-flopped and you’re still going hard. That kind of focus – the kind that can pick up after a brutal 8th day and lay down a solid mountain climb to complete the 9th race in 10(?) days – is absolutely the kind I point to on the classroom wall. How many people can hover around the red group for 10 years, let alone be among this nation’s to 30 for a decade? We can reasonably lament the state of US men’s skiing and its funding, but the fact is you were the only man in this nation of 150 million men to finish that thing today. Enjoy your rest and rewards.

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