Nordic Skiing/Biathlon Thread

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Libertine Seguros said:
Does anybody know what happened to Riiber? I mean, I know he crashed, but how it happened. He was skating just behind Rießle one second, they both went over the riser, and then Rießle had nobody near him, and Riiber was on the floor in the advertising boards over on the right hand side of the course, somewhere you really wouldn't have any need to be. He clearly didn't hit Rießle because Rießle had no idea where Riiber had gone and was asking Rydzek what had happened on his way into the finish, he didn't look behind him until the end of the long climb, where he turned around and then couldn't see the Norwegians at all. There were some backmarkers around so it makes me wonder if he caught an edge trying to ski around some lapped traffic?
Norwegian commentators seemed to think something was wrong with his pole (camera was still on the exchange zone) but apparently that was because his shoulder had already popped out at that point.
 
Well, in fairness, in the women's race the startlist is irrelevant since as long as Johaug's on it, it's a battle for second once you get to any kind of real distance. Heidi, as expected, did her best to try to produce some tension, but as expected, dropped fairly early on and then continued to steadily lose time until the end. On the plus side for her, at least she dosed efforts well and is less likely to blow up with each passing race. At the very start of the race it looked like we might have an interloper or two, but Krista Pärmakoski had some bad classic skis, she looked up for it early on but was in herringbone at times she really shouldn't have been. Nathalie von Siebenthal's progress in distance races is rather promising at least, she's been good in the longer races all year and she's young, but against the heavyweight Norwegian onslaught strong results will be harder to get than for an interloper in the sprints, where a crash or a slow heat can eliminate some favourites early. Maiken Caspersen Falla charging away from the likes of Roponen and Jacobsen on the steep hills late on is pretty imposing too. Ingvild did even get a bit worried, because going to the line with Falla might have meant a distance podium NOT being Johaug, Weng and Østberg in some configuration, so she attacked late to drop her and maintain the status quo.
 
The startlist was pretty irrelevant in the men's race as well, as despite the best efforts of Maurice Manificat (and make no bones about it, they were good efforts) the Norwegian domination was even more extreme than in the women's race (!!!) even despite my personal favourite Norwegian male distance specialist, Sjur Røthe, giving up on the race early on. On the plus side, as soon as they changed to skate, Northug just disappeared, maybe he just didn't have it and was bluffing through the classic, maybe Manificat's pace really hit him, maybe he just had some godawful skate skis, because he just disappeared almost straight away, but whatever it is, good. Legkov tried his best but he was the tail of that lead seven for most of the race once they'd dispatched the likes of Northug, and once Sundby got tired of waiting for Manificat to hurt him and decided to hurt everybody else, it was a procession. Krogh tried gamely, but as soon as they were going up that hill on the last lap with everybody going full gas with Sundby still in skate 2 in front of them, you knew it was a matter of time. The climb after the tunnel, leading into that last little loop before the stadium, was the obvious place for him to go; once he had 2-3 seconds on Krogh that you knew Finn couldn't take back in the sprint, that was it. A good race for Lehtonen on home snow and the younger Nyenget as well from those further back that caught my eye.
 
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Libertine Seguros said:
The startlist was pretty irrelevant in the men's race as well, as despite the best efforts of Maurice Manificat (and make no bones about it, they were good efforts) the Norwegian domination was even more extreme than in the women's race (!!!) even despite my personal favourite Norwegian male distance specialist, Sjur Røthe, giving up on the race early on. On the plus side, as soon as they changed to skate, Northug just disappeared, maybe he just didn't have it and was bluffing through the classic, maybe Manificat's pace really hit him, maybe he just had some godawful skate skis, because he just disappeared almost straight away, but whatever it is, good. Legkov tried his best but he was the tail of that lead seven for most of the race once they'd dispatched the likes of Northug, and once Sundby got tired of waiting for Manificat to hurt him and decided to hurt everybody else, it was a procession. Krogh tried gamely, but as soon as they were going up that hill on the last lap with everybody going full gas with Sundby still in skate 2 in front of them, you knew it was a matter of time. The climb after the tunnel, leading into that last little loop before the stadium, was the obvious place for him to go; once he had 2-3 seconds on Krogh that you knew Finn couldn't take back in the sprint, that was it. A good race for Lehtonen on home snow and the younger Nyenget as well from those further back that caught my eye.

Thought Vylegzhanin was gonna hang in and be a factor. He wasn't. I just saw the live results and the last bit of the race. He made a pretty good comeback and finished in the top 10. Legkov has been pretty steady the whole year, but no breakthrough result, yet. Hopefully he gets at least one individual podium (win???) before the season ends in three weeks. Hellner had a good race. I think he might be even better in Canada, where the racing might suit him. Everything else was fairly standard. Not sure what the Norwegians are doing (besides what has been discussed in another thread down below....) to be this dominant all the way through the season, particularly Sundby, who has had one bad race, the Oberstdorf 15 in the TDS. Good to see Northug put in his place. He was talking a lot of smack to Pellegrino after yesterdays race.
 
So on Eurosport the comms are suggesting ways to shake up Nordic Combined, and one of them suggested decreasing the distance yet further and making it very sprinty, steep uphills, obstacles, jumps and like an XC version of ski cross. Which is precisely the opposite direction to how I was suggesting to change the sport!

This led to me being told about "cross country cross". And that this has been introduced into the Youth Winter Olympics. This is a horrifying, mind-blowingly evil spectacle which will bring about the destruction of not just this but ALL sport. If this is the direction they DO go, it is worse than replacing the Olympic kilo on the track with the execrable pile of BS that is the Olympic BMX. I already find it appalling that they've soiled the Winter Olympics by allowing X Games nonsense like "slopestyle" and the snowboard half-pipe in, but at least snowboarding is kind of about that "extreme sports" type stuff anyway; it is a horrifying thought that they may want to turn cross-country into that as well. Please put my mind at rest.
 
Re:

Libertine Seguros said:
So on Eurosport the comms are suggesting ways to shake up Nordic Combined, and one of them suggested decreasing the distance yet further and making it very sprinty, steep uphills, obstacles, jumps and like an XC version of ski cross. Which is precisely the opposite direction to how I was suggesting to change the sport!

This led to me being told about "cross country cross". And that this has been introduced into the Youth Winter Olympics. This is a horrifying, mind-blowingly evil spectacle which will bring about the destruction of not just this but ALL sport. If this is the direction they DO go, it is worse than replacing the Olympic kilo on the track with the execrable pile of BS that is the Olympic BMX. I already find it appalling that they've soiled the Winter Olympics by allowing X Games nonsense like "slopestyle" and the snowboard half-pipe in, but at least snowboarding is kind of about that "extreme sports" type stuff anyway; it is a horrifying thought that they may want to turn cross-country into that as well. Please put my mind at rest.
Agree completely. As if sprints weren't enough. It's ok to have these things at the youth level (up to maybe 15 or 16), and try to keep the sport interesting for the younger generation, but if they try to implement 'ski cross' or something similar with obstacles and sketchy downhills into the senior world cup, olympics, world's, etc, say goodbye to the sport. Maybe we are wrong, but I think that's what'll happen if they try it. Hopefully all the teams say NO thank you and we'll keep our traditional sport. I never understood why things like snowboard or half-pipe of freestyle skiing are part of the olympics. Keep that stuff for the X Games, for the stoners (no offense to anyone) and slackers (again, no offense to anyone).

Did anyone catch the Strandvall incident yesterday? If that's what FIS and the IOC are striving for, good luck with it. Strandvall is the master of causing crashes, fall starts and generally being disrespectful at the races, but this sort of thing happens in tight racing. This isn't the way medals should be decided, and most importantly, nobody wants to see stupid accidents and any sort of injuries.
 
Re: Re:

BullsFan22 said:
Libertine Seguros said:
So on Eurosport the comms are suggesting ways to shake up Nordic Combined, and one of them suggested decreasing the distance yet further and making it very sprinty, steep uphills, obstacles, jumps and like an XC version of ski cross. Which is precisely the opposite direction to how I was suggesting to change the sport!

This led to me being told about "cross country cross". And that this has been introduced into the Youth Winter Olympics. This is a horrifying, mind-blowingly evil spectacle which will bring about the destruction of not just this but ALL sport. If this is the direction they DO go, it is worse than replacing the Olympic kilo on the track with the execrable pile of BS that is the Olympic BMX. I already find it appalling that they've soiled the Winter Olympics by allowing X Games nonsense like "slopestyle" and the snowboard half-pipe in, but at least snowboarding is kind of about that "extreme sports" type stuff anyway; it is a horrifying thought that they may want to turn cross-country into that as well. Please put my mind at rest.
Did anyone catch the Strandvall incident yesterday? If that's what FIS and the IOC are striving for, good luck with it. Strandvall is the master of causing crashes, fall starts and generally being disrespectful at the races, but this sort of thing happens in tight racing. This isn't the way medals should be decided, and most importantly, nobody wants to see stupid accidents and any sort of injuries.
Yh, I loved how he seemed to blame Edin afterwards. Seems a bit of an a**hole.
 
With Strandvall sometimes I think his reputation precedes him and he gets himself caught up in something and will end up taking more flak for it than another in a comparable situation. Yesterday however he was absolutely to blame, there was never enough space nor was there ever going to be enough space for him to try that line. I'd maybe have given him the benefit of the doubt in getting overexcited in front of his home fans, but then he started being a clown afterwards too, at one point I thought he was going to punch Edin.
 
Sep 25, 2009
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...if you got time, check your local eurosport channel for a biathlon european championship from tumen...its not on nrk...

the mixed relay is about to start.
 
It is also streamed live on IBU pages..
What a pity Otčenáš did not find an additional burst of energy, Slovakia was really close to winning! I thought Garanichev would disappear on the horizon when he passed him, but Otčenáš gave a good fight.
 
Re:

TomasC said:
It is also streamed live on IBU pages..
What a pity Otčenáš did not find an additional burst of energy, Slovakia was really close to winning! I thought Garanichev would disappear on the horizon when he passed him, but Otčenáš gave a good fight.

It was a good comeback by the Russians. Sure, it was mostly B and C teasers and younger athletes competing, but they made up quite a bit of ground to just be able to get into that position. Slovakia hasn't had a good go of it the last couple of years, particularly without Kuzmina, but hopefully this turns their fortunes around.
 
Evgeny Garanichev in this kind of competition is something of a ringer, though! While yes, the likes of Florian Graf have many years' World Cup experience, he's been ousted from the German frontline squad and is trying to break back into the World Cup team; Garanichev is very, very much a part of the Russians' first team plans going forward unless their selectors become even crazier than they normally are.

For the most part the Kuzmina-less Slovaks have performed around their level, Gerekova has had a few near misses with the podium when in form, and Fialková had a good couple of weeks in Ruhpolding and is still pretty young. A lot of their best athletes skipped the North American rounds so this is them building form for the Worlds as well.
 
Sep 25, 2009
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i thought the 2nd mixed relay was fun to watch, a lot of fun actually...

perhaps the following impressions betray my lack of following the sport, nevertheless, i was surprised to see garanichev (not only as an anchor b/c he typically was #3 in the relays i saw) but his presence in tumen altogether :confused: i thought this european championship was a de facto comp for mostly the ibu-level competitors, not the wc elite. which garanichen unquestionably belongs to. in fact, it was funny how the euro sport commentators (i do put them on in biathlons, unlike the xc races) were sure that the garanichev superior class will handle any 15 second deficit w/o a question.

they turned out right to say the least...i was also surprised how little, i mean physically, evheny was/is...in a photo he's as tall as the russian team girls. the surprise is b/c carrying a few kilo rifle for a smaller athlete is an additional handicap. but apparently, garanichen is very fast.

another impression i cant NOT mention was his sprinting w/o the use of poles compared to the slovak...he managed to win, but the slovak seemed to have been closing and (my impression) had the finish been 5 more meters away - it could have been the slovak day.
 
Jan 3, 2016
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Re:

python said:
perhaps the following impressions betray my lack of following the sport, nevertheless, i was surprised to see garanichev (not only as an anchor b/c he typically was #3 in the relays i saw) but his presence in tumen altogether :confused: i thought this european championship was a de facto comp for mostly the ibu-level competitors, not the wc elite. which garanichen unquestionably belongs to.
This seems to be a result of special agreement between Garanichev and local governor, Yakushev. Garanichev is a very popular star there (he perceived as a local since he moved to Tyumen when he started his biathlon career from Perm region where he was going in for ski) so people wanted him to start there. And biathlon is a sport #1 there, extremely popular. People say it was easy to agree Garanichev's participation with Ricco Groß since his contract financed (again as some people say) through Tyumen local budget (Tyumen is a really rich oil region).

And yes, Evgeny is really small guy, 1,69, could be the smallest guy in the world biathlon elite.
 
Jan 3, 2016
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BullsFan22 said:
Slovakia hasn't had a good go of it the last couple of years, particularly without Kuzmina, but hopefully this turns their fortunes around.
Nastya is planning to come back at the last stage of IBU Cup in Martell.
 
Garanichev also did Canmore but skipped Presque Isle, so is planning to prepare for the Worlds by that route.

The European Championships are traditionally a sort of halfway house between the IBU Cup level and the World Championships - a lot of the second tier nations and smaller teams who don't expect to have a shot at winning anything at the Worlds will send their best athletes to the European championships to try to get medals and to prepare for the World Championships as well, we've seen medals for the likes of Andrejs Rastorgujevs there before in recent years. What you typically get is the IBU Cup level athletes for the biggest nations, juniors holding form from their own Worlds, and the main teams from countries like Bulgaria, Romania, Estonia, sometimes even the likes of Poland and Slovakia. You'll see established World Cup names on tomorrow's start lists, as well as Garanichev there are others like Jaroslav Soukup, Eva Tofalvi, Krasimir Anev, Michael Rösch, Matej Kazar, Jana Gereková, Henrik L'Abée-Lund, Daniel Mesotitsch, Nadezhda Skardino and Vladimir Iliev, yet the biggest nations' teams are either young prospects (Norway's women) or previously established World Cup names who've fallen down in the pecking order and could now be classed as reclamation projects (Florian Graf or Svetlana Sleptsova, for example). Quite often the host nation will include some bigger names than you might expect. Last year Ekaterina Yurlova competed as one such reclamation project following a poor previous season, which is what got her the start in the World Championships Individual she surprisingly won, and I think one of the main Polish women, maybe Nowakowska, won a few medals as well.

This year the competitions being in Tyumen' has affected the field somewhat as it's still a fairly significant distance to travel.
 
Sep 25, 2009
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die deutsch sibirischen blitzkrieg ... endlich :p :)

a superb 1-2-3 by the geman ibu gals... congrats !
 
Sep 25, 2009
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Re: Re:

BullsFan22 said:
python said:
die deutsch sibirischen blitzkrieg ... endlich :p :)

a superb 1-2-3 by the geman ibu gals... congrats !
The Russian wall is finally broken. Hats off to the Russians for withstanding for 75 years!!


Ok. Sorry. Terrible joke.
;) the germans finally learned the way...where the crude-force soldaten failed so miserably, the graceful girls with those puny 22 caliber rifles snow danced their way around the wall :)

if seriously, as so often happened in a chancy sport like biathlon, the host nation was clearly affected by the pressure to perform, while someone got a perfect day in.
 

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