FIS Nordic Junior World Championships (Midway, Utah): 10/20 k skiathlon
A Junior World Championships medal has been on Katharine Ogden’s mind for some time — two years, to be exact.
“Every day in training, it’s kind of something that I think about. It’s the little thing that helps me push myself,” Ogden, a 19-year-old member of the Stratton Mountain School and U.S. Ski Team D-team, said in a post-race interview with the U.S. Ski Team on Friday. “Even in the middle of June, I’ll be like, ‘You know what I want to be? On the podium at World Juniors.’ ”
She did just that on Friday, racing to third in the women’s 10-kilometer skiathlon at 2017 Junior World Championships at Soldier Hollow in Midway, Utah. In doing so, she became the most successful American at World Juniors, surpassing Lindsey Williams’s previous best of fourth place in 2003.
Ogden finished 10.4 seconds behind the winner, Norway’s Marte Mæhlum Johansen, who finished first in 27:17.3 minutes. Sweden’s Ebba Andersson took second, 6.6 seconds back. Behind Ogden, Italy’s Anna Comarella placed fourth (+51.6) ahead of Finland’s Eveliina Piippo in fifth (+58.7).
Hailey Swirbul (University of Alaska Anchorage) was the second U.S. woman in 24th (+2:21.0), while Natalie Hynes (Whitehorse) led Canada in 28th (+3:11.3).
Also for Canada, India McIsaac (Rocky Mountain Racers) finished 30th (+3:13.8), Lisle Compton (NTDC Thunder Bay) was 33rd (+3:45.5) and Annika Richardson (NTDC Thunder Bay) 41st (+4:49.3).
Also for the U.S., Lauren Jortberg (Dartmouth) finished 37th (+4:04.5) and Taeler McCrerey (University of Denver) 38th (+4:07.5).
[UPDATED] In the men’s 20 k skiathlon that followed, Russia’s Vladislav Vechkanov notched his second gold of the week in 49:40.5, outlasting Norway’s Thomas Helland Larsen by 1.9 seconds. Norway had two on the podium with Harald Østberg Amundsen in third (+2.2).
Canada’s Gareth Williams (Telemark Race Team) was the top North American in 11th (+1:24.0) for his best result at his first Junior Worlds.
American Wyatt Gebhardt (Steamboat Springs WSC) followed in 12th (+1:42.7) for his second-straight top 20 and Hunter Wonders (Alaska Pacific University) also finished in the top 20 for the second-straight race in 18th (+1:57.9).
Canada’s Philippe Boucher (CNEPH) was 22nd (+3:15.7), Ryan Jackson (Team Hardwood) 31st (+3:52.5), and Remi Drolet (Black Jack) 49th (+6:57.3).
Also for the U.S., Kam Husain (SMS) placed 50th (+6:59), and Logan Diekmann (University of Utah) was 53rd (+7:47.3).
NorAm Eastern Canadian Championships (Cantley, Quebec): Classic sprint
The NorAm series resumed at the Nakkertok Nordic Centre on Friday with Eastern Canadian Championships with classic technique sprints.
Alberta World Cup Academy’s Maya MacIsaac-Jones returned from U23s in time to win the 1.3 k A-final in 3:42.06, after qualifying sixth. Top qualifier Sophie Carrier-Laforte was second for CNEPH at her home event, 0.66 seconds behind. SMS Elite’s Anne Hart rounded out the podium at 3.40 seconds back.
On the men’s side, AWCA’s Dominique Moncion-Groulx qualified first before winning every heat on his way to victory in 3:14.84 on a slightly longer 1.4 k course. NTDC Thunder Bay’s Angus Foster was a close second, 0.09 seconds behind. Team R.A.D.’s Russell Kennedy was a comfortable third, 2.75 seconds back, on a day marked by some surprising eliminations.
The elite field is slightly smaller than usual with some athletes away in Soldier Hollow and PyeongChang. As many younger racers were stuck in school for the day, there are only about 500 starters for what is usually the largest FIS event in Canada.
FIS Cross-Country World Cup (PyeongChang, South Korea): Classic sprint
In the last month, we’ve seen two U.S. Ski Team members — Jessie Diggins and Sadie Bjornsen — on the World Cup podium. Add Ida Sargent to that list.
On Friday, the Vermont native raced to third in the women’s 1.4-kilometer classic sprint at the first-ever World Cup in PyeongChang, South Korea. It was the first of three days of racing in PyeongChang, which will host the 2018 Winter Olympics next season.
Sargent qualified fifth (4.76 seconds behind her teammate Sophie Caldwell, who won the qualifier in 3:40.89 minutes) and went on to win her quarterfinal in a photo finish, then placed second her semifinal (also in a photo finish), edging Russia’s Alisa Zhambalova in third by less than 0.01 seconds.
Both advanced to the final, where Sargent ultimately finished third, 1.79 seconds behind Slovenia’s Anamarija Lampič, who won in 3:41.97. Norway’s Silje Øyre Slind took second (+1.6), just 0.19 seconds ahead of Sargent. For all three women, it was their first time on a World Cup podium.
Sargent beat out Poland’s Justyna Kowalczyk for third by 0.56 seconds. Zhambalova finished fifth and Slovenia’s Katja Visnar was sixth (+17.1).
“I’m really excited about the podium and it hasn’t really set in yet,” Sargent wrote in an email on Friday. “It has been a goal of mine for a long time to be on the podium so it was a very special day! I’ve been inspired by so many fast teammates so happy to follow in their footsteps!”
All five U.S. women racing on Friday finished in the top 30 to qualify for the heats. Caldwell won the qualifier by 1.84 seconds over Kowalczyk, Caitlin Patterson qualified 22nd, Liz Guiney 25th and Liz Stephen 29th (Stephen’s first time making the heats in three years).
Jessica Yeaton, who races for Australia but trains with Alaska Pacific University, took the last qualifying spot in 30th (+26.29).
Canada’s Annika Hicks and Sadie White missed qualifying in 32nd (+32.96) and 34th (+38.96), respectively, out of 36 women.
Caldwell won her quarterfinal but finished fourth in her semifinal (behind Slind, Kowalczyk, and Sweden’s Maria Nordström, respectively) to miss advancing to the final. She placed eighth overall.
Guiney placed 24th overall after finishing fifth in her quarterfinal, Stephen was 25th after taking fifth in the same quarterfinal as Sargent (where Yeaton finished sixth for 30th overall), and Patterson was 27th after finishing sixth in her quarterfinal.
Both Canada’s Len Valjas and American Andy Newell reached the final in the men’s 1.5 k classic sprint on Friday, where they raced to fourth and sixth, respectively.
Valjas started the day by qualifying in second, 1.97 seconds behind Russia’s Alexander Panzhinskiy, who topped the qualifier in 3:26.78. The Canadian went on to advance in second from his quarterfinal and fourth as a lucky loser from the first semifinal. In the final, he missed out on the podium in a photo finish with Russia’s Andrey Parfenov, who took third, 0.01 seconds ahead of him.
Meanwhile, Newell qualified seventh (+5.18) and took second in both his quarterfinal and semifinal (finishing the second semifinal 0.34 seconds behind Panzhinskiy in first).
In the final, Russia’s 25-year-old Gleb Retivykh pulled off his first World Cup victory and podium with a 0.3-second win over Norway’s Sondre Turvoll Fossli in 3:30.79. Retivykh qualified sixth (+4.53) then won his quarterfinal and placed third in the same semifinal as Valjas, advancing as the other lucky loser.
“I had wait six years for my first victory and it is great,” Retivykh said, according to an International Ski Federation (FIS) press release.
Russia had two on the podium with Parfenov in third (+0.73), just ahead of Valjas. The third Russian in the final, Panzhinsky ended up fifth (+1.49), ahead of Newell in sixth (+17.19)
Three Canadian men qualified for the heats, with Jess Cockney in 16th (+10.24) and Simon Lapointe in 25th (+14.15). Bob Thompson missed 30th by one-hundredth of a second in 31st (+16.95), and Julien Locke was 36th (+17.9).
Three Americans qualified as well, with Simi Hamilton in 12th (+8.26) and Matt Gelso in 29th (+16.66). Distance skiers Scott Patterson and Noah Hoffman finished 44th (+24.21) and 48th (+25.28) out of 55.
Cockney reached the semifinals after winning his quarterfinal. In the second semifinal with Newell, he placed fifth, 5.44 seconds behind Panzhinskiy, for 10th overall.
In Cockney’s quarterfinal, Hamilton crashed and finished fourth (+41.9) for 17th overall.
Canada’s 23-year-old Lapointe finished sixth in his quarterfinal to place 27th, besting his previous World Cup best by 43 places. Gelso took 29th for his first-ever World Cup points after placing sixth in his quarterfinal.
Women’s qualifier | Women’s brackets
Men’s qualifier | Men’s brackets
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- 1.4 k classic sprint
- 10 k skiathlon
- 2017 Junior World Championships
- Alexander Panzhinskiy
- Alisa Zhambalova
- Anamarija Lampic
- Andrey Parfenov
- Angus Foster
- Anna Comarella
- Anne Hart
- Annie Hart
- Annika Hicks
- Annika Richardson
- Bob Thompson
- Caitlin Patterson
- Canadian National Ski Team
- Dominique Moncion-Groulx
- Eastern Canadian Championships
- Ebba Andersson
- Eveliina Piippo
- Gareth Williams
- Gleb Retivykh
- hailey swirbul
- Hunter Wonders
- Ida Sargent
- India McIsaac
- Jess Cockney
- jessica yeaton
- julien locke
- Justyna Kowalczyk
- Kam Husain
- katharine ogden
- Katja Visnar
- Lauren Jortberg
- Len Valjas
- Lisle Compton
- Liz Guiney
- Liz Stephen
- Logan Diekmann
- Maria Nordström
- Marte Mæhlum Johansen
- Matt Gelso
- Maya MacIsaac-Jones
- men's 1.5 k classic sprint
- Nakkertok Nordic Centre
- Natalie Hynes
- Noah Hoffman
- Philippe Boucher
- PyeongChang classic sprint
- PyeongChang World Cup
- Remi Drolet
- russell kennedy
- Ryan Jackson
- Sadie White
- Scott Patterson
- Silje Øyre Slind
- Simi Hamilton
- Simon Lapointe
- Soldier Hollow
- Sophie Caldwell
- Sophie Carrier-Laforte
- Taeler McCrerey
- Thomas Helland Larsen
- Vladislav Vechkanov
- Wyatt Gebhardt