Our blogs are being a little wonky, but we didn’t want to leave you without some international skiing news. Here’s the roundup for June 13, which usually appears on The Inside Track:
— Thought you’d heard the last of Janne Immonen, the Finnish skier who blew his team’s reputation at the 2001 World Championships? He’s back on trial. On Thursday, the former World Cup skier was indicted with two others for using erythropoietin (EPO), a banned substance, and for perjury after lying to a court in 2011. He admitted to both, and with the trial ongoing, prosecutors are demanding jail time for Immonen, Harri Kirvesniemi and Jari Isometsä, according to NTB.
Immonen, 55, used a blood-plasma expander called hydroxyethyl starch (HES) back at the 2001 World Championships, and was caught, disqualifying his gold-medal relay team. Immonen received a two-year suspension before officially retiring in 2003. At the 2011 court case, his former coach Kari-Pekka Kyrö stated that Immonen used EPO as well.
— Miss the racing scene? On June 22, you can start following the FIS Rollerskiing World Cup when it kicks off in Croatia. The circuit tours Italy, Russia, and France before concluding in Toblach, Italy, in late September.
— Wondering what Sami Jauhojärvi is up to? According to a press release, the 32-year-old Finnish skier recently signed with the Austrian-based Snowproof Racing. The team currently has eight athletes, many of which are professionals: Jauhojärvi, Antti Lampinen and Riitta Liisa Roponen from Finland, Martin Koukal of the Czech Republic, Slovenia’s Martin Bajcicak, Manuel Hirner of Austria, Ukraine’s Valentina Shevchenko, and Italy’s Stephanie Santer.
“By signing Jauhojärvi, Lampinen and Hirner we fulfilled most of our wishes,” team director Marc Hager said. “We wanted to have athletes from a Scandinavian country, which are well known in the scene, as well as one athlete from Austria who should represent the team’s nationality.”
Best known for classic sprinting, Jauhojärvi is apparently going the distance in his first season of marathons.
“We’ve planned to start in 3 to 4 marathon races with a special attention to the Ski Classics series,” he said. “Together with a strong team we’re for sure aiming for some top results.”
— We’re all for originality, especially when it comes to making your own theme songs. Check out this intro video for the Swedish Winter Sports Research Centre and scroll around for other interesting training tips (i.e. “The Role of the Pole”, “Strength Training for X-Country Skiing”).