A trio of Americans finished in the top 20 of the final women’s World Cup race of the season, a 30-kilometer freestyle mass start in Holmenkollen, Norway. Liz Stephen led the U.S. team in ninth, Jessie Diggins took 14th, while Caitlin Gregg capped off an eventful World Cup season with a 19th-place finish.
Andy Newell narrowly qualified in 28th, but made it into the semifinals and finished 12th overall in the season’s final World Cup sprint. Canada’s Lenny Valjas just missed out the semifinals and took 14th overall. Sadie Bjornsen was the lone North American woman to qualify and finished 26th overall after racing in the fastest quarterfinal heat.
After winning two medals at the 2015 World Championships, Alex Harvey finished 17th in Sunday’s 15 k freestyle in Lahti, Finland. Meanwhile, Emily Nishikawa led the Canadian women in the 10 k and earned her best World Cup result of the season.
In the last classic-distance race of the season, Sadie Bjornsen placed 14th and Jessie Diggins took 17th on Sunday in the women’s 10-kilometer freestyle individual start in Lahti, Finland. Erik Bjornsen led the American men in 38th.
American Kikkan Randall finally found her old groove and raced to her best World Cup result of the season, finishing in third in Saturday’s freestyle sprint in Lahti, Finland. In a close finish, Marit Bjørgen of Norway won yet another World Cup race, expanding her lead in the overall standings and the sprint standings.
The 2015 American Birkebeiner 51 k freestyle marathon on Saturday offered no shortage of excitement, as Italy’s Segio Bonaldi outsprinted three French skiers to win his second Birkie by half a second. American Holly Brooks used a hard push in the final kilometers to collect her second Birkie title as well.
American Jessie Diggins finished 17th after posting the fifth-fastest time at the 1.8-kilometer mark, while Liz Stephen — who finished fifth overall in the 2015 Tour de Ski — took 26th. Rosie Brennan came in 32nd and was just a few seconds from cracking the top 30, while Kikkan Randall finished 33rd.
Simi Hamilton made it to the semifinals in Saturday’s World Cup classic sprint in Östersund, Sweden, to end up 11th overall, and Andy Newell took 12th for his best result of the season. Sadie Bjornsen and Sophie Caldwell made it to the quarterfinals as well and ended up 22nd and 20th overall, respectively.
Russia asserted its dominance once again by winning the men’s relay, while Norway earned a narrow victory in the women’s relay on the last day of Junior World Championships in Almaty, Kazakhstan. The U.S. women were eighth and the men placed 11th, while the Canadian men’s and women’s teams both finished 10th.
Germany’s Laura Dahlmeier squeaked ahead of teammate Franziska Hildebrand on the final loop to earn her first-ever IBU World Cup victory. American Susan Dunklee took ninth to capture her third-straight top-10 result, while American Annelies Cook had one of her best World Cup results ever in taking 28th.
Katharine Ogden, racing in her first-ever Junior World Championships, earned the best distance result for any American at junior worlds since 2002. She placed sixth in Friday’s 10 k skiathlon, while Katherine Stewart-Jones led the Canadian women in 14th.
American Ian Torchia led the North American men on Friday, placing 11th in the 20 k skiathlon at Junior World Championships, while Alexis Dumas of Canada finished 18th. Meanwhile, the Russians swept the podium for the second-consecutive race.
17-year-old American Katharine Ogden finished an impressive 11th in her first-ever race in the Junior World Championships, while Katherine Stewart-Jones led the Canadian women and took 25th. In the men’s race, Canada’s Alexis Dumas placed 30th and was the top North American in a race dominated by the Russian team.
In the final race before a break in World Cup racing, Canada’s Alex Harvey recovered from a rough classic portion of the men’s 30-kilometer skiathlon in Rybinsk, Russia, to take ninth. Ivan Babikov cracked the top-20 and finished in 19th.
After making it through the qualifier, three Americans and Canadian Alex Harvey were not able to race their way into the semifinals of Saturday’s World Cup 1.3 k freestyle sprint in Rybinsk, Russia. However, American Erik Bjornsen had his best sprint result on the World Cup and reached the heats for the first time.
Canadian Alex Harvey took 10th in the World Cup 15 k freestyle individual start in Rybinsk, Russia, taking 10th, while Ivan Babikov placed 22nd and Devon Kershaw finished 36th for Canada. The American men finished 40th and 50th with Erik Bjornsen and Matt Gelso, respectively.
The Tour de Ski was the one major international title that eluded Marit Bjørgen, but she finally claimed it after an uncontested victory in Sunday’s final stage in Val di Femme, Italy, a 9 k freestyle pursuit. While Norway swept the podium, Liz Stephen took fifth to earn the best Tour finish of all time for the United States.
In the tightest race of the 2015 Tour de Ski, German Tim Tscharnke outsprinted four other non-Norwegian skiers to claim his best World Cup result of the season. The current Tour standings now leave the potential for a dramatic final Tour stage on Sunday.
Kikkan Randall is leaving the 2015 Tour de Ski in 25th, while Liz Stephen put together a good performance on Thursday to stay in 14th overall. Stephen will be the only American women racing in the final two stages.
Alex Harvey found himself in a slower group during Thursday’s 25 k freestyle pursuit in Toblach, Italy, but still managed to get past Switzerland’s Dario Cologna to take the sixth overall in the Tour de Ski. Canadian teammates Devon Kershaw and Ivan Babikov finished 25th and 31st, respectively.