HomeTag Cross-Country


“I have no secrets,” Alexander Bolshunov told FIS in regard to his back-to-back wins in Kuusamo, Finland. On Saturday, the Russian had won a drag race with Norway’s superstar Johannes Hoesflot Klaebo during Saturday’s classic sprint.  Bolshunov had a commanding victory in Sunday’s 15-kilometer classic race. He stopped the clock with a winning time of 36:17.8 minutes. Early in the race, Bolshunov’s splits mirrored those of Norway’s Emil Iversen during which the two skiers’ times never deviated...


Today, she’s Olympic-bound. But two years ago, Anne-Marie Comeau was stepping away from cross-country skiing. Comeau had raced at 2015 World Junior Championships, finishing 25th in the skiathlon, but by December of that year the Canadian was diagnosed with a shoulder injury that required her to take half a year away from skiing. She didn’t compete past the first weekend of NorAms, or at all in the 2016-2017 season, after deciding to devote herself to...

according to WADA, indicates that “while there may not be an adverse analytical finding, there may be some suspicion according to the results and that further analysis or investigation should be conducted.” After an ATF is investigated, it could lead to a negative result (the suspicion was not warranted), an AAF (something was found), or it may be canceled. WADA stresses that in reading and interpreting 2016 Anti-Doping testing Figures report, “one single result does...

(Press release) SALT LAKE CITY — Widely known through the cross country ski community, the annual Drive for 25 is the most successful grassroots fundraising effort in American ski sport and the principle fundraising engine for the National Nordic Foundation. This year’s Drive for 25 builds on the success initially created by U.S. coaches Matt Whitcomb and Peter Vordenberg who challenged the skiing community to support itself in a single-day effort in 2011. The 2015...


FasterSkier's cross country performances of the year come from Alex Harvey at the 2015 World Championships where he won silver and bronze medals in the sprint and skiathlon. Jessie Diggins and Caitlin Gregg are co-recipients of the women's award for their historic 2-3 finish in the 10 k freestyle at Worlds.

Continuing with the athlete development theme recently, here’s a graph showing the age at which a skier races in their first WC versus their overall median WC result: For fairly obvious reasons, you have read this fairly carefully, particularly at the more extreme ages. I wouldn’t pay much attention to either panel past the age [...] Related posts:

  1. Skiing Performance and Age
  2. Performance Trends: ITA, FIN, GER
  3. Yet Another Athlete Development Marker

I got a request for some similar graphs from my podium development posts, but focused more on the domestic scene. So, for example, we had this graph: This showed the age at which future WC podium finishers achieved a particular milestone. So let’s turn to just US and Canadian skiers who have simply participated in [...] Related posts:

  1. Post-WJC/U23 Development: Canada
  2. Yet Another Athlete Development Marker
  3. Development Questions

After correcting a few typos in the the “official” results I thought we’d look again at the time histories for Dartmouth’s Moosilauke time trial. The following graph depicts every result (except for 2011, which I still can’t find anywhere). The blue is the median for each individual running; this includes both summer and fall times. [...] Related posts:

  1. Aging Ski Teams: Poland and Germany
  2. Moosilauke Time Trial
  3. Animated WJC Results History

As FasterSkier mentioned the other day, the Dartmouth Ski Team’s Moosilauke time trial is a pretty neat data set, since they’ve kept the data going back quite a ways. Interpretations are sometimes a challenge, since the course has changed from time to time when trail work is done. My sources tell me that in addition [...] Related posts:

  1. Moosilauke Time Trial
  2. USST 2011-2012 Preview
  3. Canadian Ski Team: 2011-2012 Preview

Well, ok, not ever.  Just over the past 20 seasons or so. There are all sorts of different ways we could measure this.  First, some ground rules: I’m only going to look at actual World Cup races, no Olympics or World Championships.  I’m also excluding Tour de Ski events because these are my rules, so [...] Related posts:

  1. Most Unimproved Men: Distance
  2. Most Unimproved Women: Distance
  3. Is It Panic Time For The Norwegian Men’s Distance Skiers?

As promised from last time, here we have the detailed development plots for sprinting. First the men: And the women: As before, these are big, so click on them for the full versions. Also, remember that if you don’t see a line indicating one of the events, that’s because two or more events happened at [...] Related posts:

  1. FIS Points Development Guide
  2. Is Sprinting A Young Person’s Game?
  3. Yet Another Athlete Development Marker

As promised from last time, I’m going to show you the un-aggregated data from Tuesday’s plots. This means we’re going to have some big graphs, bigger than I typically think is useful, but no matter. I’ve plotted FIS points versus age for each of the male and female skiers with a podium result in a [...] Related posts:

  1. Post-WJC/U23 Development: Canada
  2. FIS Points Development Guide
  3. Applying FIS Point Development Curves To The USST

I happened to be thinking about visualizations of athlete development recently, and in the process cooked up the following graph: What I’ve done here is to take the podium finishers in major international events for the past five seasons and recorded each person’s age when they received their first (individual) WC/OWG/WSC start, when they scored [...] Related posts:

  1. Post-WJC/U23 Development: Canada
  2. Post-WJC/U23 Development: Norway
  3. FIS Points Development Guide

This post is somewhat of a teaser trailer for the sorts of things we can do once we have a complete record of major international ski results stretching back to the 70′s. A natural and possibly controversial question is whether the World Cup field has become more or less competitive over time.  Intuitively, I think [...] Related posts:

  1. Predicting FIS Points For World Cup Races
  2. Predicting World Cup FIS Points (con’t)
  3. Are Women’s WC Fields Really ‘Weaker’?

Continuing on from last time, we’ll single out a handful of skiers who appear to do significantly better in shorter sprint courses. Same methodology as before led me to pluck out the following three skiers: In general, the effects in this direction tended to be weaker and less dramatic, even at the extreme ends of [...] Related posts:

  1. Skiing Performance and Age
  2. Trends In US Skiing Performance: Sprint
  3. Liz Stephen’s Distance Preferences

The notion of an athlete preferring distance races of a particular length is pretty familiar, but what about sprinting? The differences between a 0.8km and a 1.8km sprint course may not seem like much compared to the differences between a 15km and 30km race. But (while I’m not a physiology expert) it seems likely to [...] Related posts:

  1. New Zealand Continental Cups Sprint
  2. Sprint Qualification Pacing Analysis
  3. Quantifying Technique Speed Differences: Sprinting

That’s an easy one: probably not. I’m referring, of course, to his recent pronouncements about the upcoming season, in which he claims that he will win 7 World Cups, the Tour de Ski overall title, as well as 3 golds at World Championships. Obviously, given Northug’s history I’m not inclined to take this too seriously. [...] Related posts:

  1. Did Petter Northug Have a Slight Edge On Marcus Hellner?
  2. Head-To-Head: Petter Northug vs. Marcus Hellner
  3. Back Burners: Northug, Hjelmeset & Saarinen

Liz Stephen destroyed the women’s field this weekend in the annual Climb to the Castle rollerski race. The margin, just over 5 minutes in a race that took the leaders between 40-45 minutes is certainly impressive. But I think that margin doesn’t provide much useful information. Time trials that are most useful as gauges of [...] Related posts:

  1. Beitostølen FIS Race Recap: Women
  2. Climb To The Castle – Men
  3. Climb To The Castle – Women