HomeTag Ivan Babikov

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Coaching at the international level beings expectations, personalities to manage, not to mention the nitty gritty of booking plane tickets and travel logistics. When Justin Wadsworth stepped away from Canada's National Team head coach position this past March, it gave an opportunity for three core skiers from his tenure -- Kershaw, Harvey, and Babikov -- to reflect on where they have been.

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After placing third in Wednesday's skiathlon, Finland's Matti Heikkinen claimed his first victory since 2011 on Friday in the men's 15 k skate. Canada once again had four in the top 30, with Alex Harvey leading the team in fourth. “I think it’s one of the best races of my life here," Harvey said of Canmore. Noah Hoffman led the U.S. in 23rd.

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Stage 6 of the Ski Tour Canada featured a brutal course for both the women's 15-kilometer and the men's 30 k skiathlons. It was simply survival of the fittest as the classic loop featured a grueling 1.2 k climb while the skate leg was punctuated by dicey soft-snow corners navigated at high speed.

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Norway's Martin Johnsrud Sundby won the Ski Tour Canada's brutal Stage 6 skiathlon on Wednesday, putting him third overall in the Tour, while Petter Northug remains in second despite losing precious time to Tour leader Sergey Ustiugov. Canada's Alex Harvey jumped a spot to fourth overall, and his teammates Ivan Babikov and Graeme Killick posted season-best results.

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Ivan Babikov's a World Cup racer, not a marathon specialist, but on Saturday, Feb. 20, he'll be one of the favorites at the 2016 American Birkebeiner in northern Wisconsin. He decided to do the race a week ago. “I remembered how crazy the Birkie is and how much people there care," he said. "This is their local Olympic Games, so I’m pretty pretty psyched to be going."

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Martin Johnsrud Sundby won his third-consecutive Tour de Ski by a record-breaking 3 minutes and 15 seconds and another Norwegian, Finn Hågen Krogh, bested a tight chase pack for second overall. Russian Sergey Ustiugov captured third, and Alex Harvey led the North Americans in 14th at the end of the eight-stage Tour.

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Martin Johnsrud Sundby showed he's still got it, winning Saturday's 15 k classic mass start ahead of Norwegian teammate Niklas Dyrhaug and Kazakhstan's Alexey Poltoranin, for nearly a 1 1/2-minute head start in Sunday's final climb. Alex Harvey notched seventh on the day for 12th overall heading into the final stage.

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Finn Hågen Krogh knows a lot about ups and downs, and has formed somewhat of a pattern at this year's Tour de Ski. However, the Norwegian had one of his career-best races on Friday, winning the 10 k freestyle by 3.6 seconds ahead of teammate and overall Tour leader Martin Johnsrud Sundby. Noah Hoffman placed 19th to lead the U.S., and Canadian Alex Harvey finished 37th and is now 15th in the Tour.