Nordic Skiing/Biathlon Thread

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kingjr said:
Gigs_98 said:
I don't watch XC skiing that regularly so question to the experts, has Holund already won this?
I'd say yes, but we haven't really had this situation before. Not to that extreme.


Olsson went even earlier, although he had some assistance from Cologna for a while, but the chase of him was much more organised.

I don't think Holund has already won this but it will depend a lot on the tactics within the chase.
 
Bolshunov did a great job from 40 to 48km to go but with that descent into the stadium then the two climbs, he just hit the wall and the old skis came back to bite him as he couldn't make any gains on the long gradual descent and left himself too much to do. Heroic job considering his fatigue, but Holund's gold is the most well-deserved of the championships. This is much more like a 50k that we should cherish, not crap like Lahti's mass sprint or the unfortunately weather-ruined Falun race (where apart from Södergren and Olsson nobody really tried much until quite late on, and the snowfall made it impossible for any such move to succeed anyway). All of the dumbing down plans of the FIS involving shortening every race because "everybody likes sprints because of the constant action" can go **** themselves. This is worth so much more than that.
 
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Oh wow, what a race. The top two guys were clearly the best of the day, obviously. Others, despite having the benefit of sitting in the group for most of the time, couldn't really do anything even when it mattered.
 
Great race.
Incredible race by Holund, the least expected of the Norwegians gets a surprising win.
Bolshunov with another fantastic race he has an amazing recovery capacity, but gets another second (he almost needs an Alexander Bolshunov is the new Poulidor thread)
6 gold medals in 6 races in the men side for Norway. This is getting like the ladies side a few years ago.
 
Bolshunov, clearly the strongest and most universal skier in the world right now. Unfortunately he lost another race tactically. The silver lining is that he’s barely 22, so if he stays healthy and motivated, he’ll win many golds in the future.
 
Crazy race.

But I have to question the tactics of the other three Norwegians a bit. I think that they could have helped Holund a bit more by not letting Bolshunov get away after the ski change. In the end, it looked as though Røthe and Sundby had a lot in reserve, suggesting that they could have closed down Bolshunov and thus diminished Bolshunov's incentive to chase down Holund.
 
Musgrave saying that it was actually one of the easier 50ks he's done, but he can't really complain about them not catching Holund or Bolshunov because he didn't contribute any work to the chase - it was "49km at fairly average pace with 1km really fast at the end" and the Norwegians played it tactically very well, spoiling most of the chases - it was with some judicious use of the pitstop that Bolshunov got away.

Holund says this is his favourite discipline and because the first 20k had been skied very slowly compared to what he expected, he was getting frustrated by the lack of impetus and tried to up the pace and was surprised nobody came with him.

Harvey said he did everything he wanted, positioning himself at the bottom of "the sprint hill" but not having the legs, so he had absolutely no intention of chasing down Holund and expected that he could profit from other teams' chasing just like Lahti, but only the Russians were doing the chasing, and Sundby and Røthe managed to disrupt them well. Harvey has of course won this race by being Simon Gerrans, but at least he was philosophical about the fact bronze was the best he could hope for with this tactic.
 
Why on earth did FIS put the next 50k race on the next weekend? It seems like an overload to me. And then it will be one year till the 50k comes back in the World Cup! Only Holmenkollen next year plus that 38k race from Storlien to Meraker. :(

Liked that race a lot. Very thrilling to see Bolshunov eating back those seconds.
 
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KZD said:
Great race.
Incredible race by Holund, the least expected of the Norwegians gets a surprising win.
Bolshunov with another fantastic race he has an amazing recovery capacity, but gets another second (he almost needs an Alexander Bolshunov is the new Poulidor thread)
6 gold medals in 6 races in the men side for Norway. This is getting like the ladies side a few years ago.
Серебролшунов!

Cance > TheRest said:
Crazy race.

But I have to question the tactics of the other three Norwegians a bit. I think that they could have helped Holund a bit more by not letting Bolshunov get away after the ski change. In the end, it looked as though Røthe and Sundby had a lot in reserve, suggesting that they could have closed down Bolshunov and thus diminished Bolshunov's incentive to chase down Holund.
To be fair, the Russians were having a lot of trouble organising a chase because of the way Røthe and Sundby were working to disrupt them, and the work they did when the Norwegians went to the ski change called their bluff, Bolshunov immediately attacked. The two Norwegians did get on the front at this point and caught the other Russians, but Bolshunov managed to get more of a gap. I think at that point they were conflicted because they probably didn't expect to win from the sprint at the end there with Røthe and Sundby, but didn't want to pull others that may want to attack Holund's gap across. Maybe they simply bluffed that Bolshunov would tire because he'd done every race and trusted Hans Christer to take it to the line while they held everybody back, or maybe they did push it comparatively late on to try to chase Bolshunov but didn't have enough so when they realised they weren't going to catch him, settled for the bronze and relaxed the pace again.
 
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Cance > TheRest said:
Crazy race.

But I have to question the tactics of the other three Norwegians a bit. I think that they could have helped Holund a bit more by not letting Bolshunov get away after the ski change. In the end, it looked as though Røthe and Sundby had a lot in reserve, suggesting that they could have closed down Bolshunov and thus diminished Bolshunov's incentive to chase down Holund.
I am sure they tried to close him down. I guess they were surprised when all the Russians went past the ski exchange. Norway got 1. 3. 4. and 5. so besides from Bolshunov their tactics worked perfectly.
 
BullsFan22 said:
Bolshunov, clearly the strongest and most universal skier in the world right now. Unfortunately he lost another race tactically. The silver lining is that he’s barely 22, so if he stays healthy and motivated, he’ll win many golds in the future.
Or he'll burn out early.
 
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Re:

KZD said:
Great race.
Incredible race by Holund, the least expected of the Norwegians gets a surprising win.
Bolshunov with another fantastic race he has an amazing recovery capacity, but gets another second (he almost needs an Alexander Bolshunov is the new Poulidor thread)
Yeah, Holund was least expected, a bit like Krüger was least expected in men's skiathlon in the olympics. But their depth in the team is so deep I guess anyone can do it?

By the way, I wonder if Holund's solo run indicates, how much advantage Norway really has above the rest of the world? I mean obviously Norwegians weren't going to try to catch him, but nobody else could or thought they couldn't do it. Russians skipped ski exchange and tried something, but only Bolshunov had stamina to do something, the rest dropped back.
'
By the way, I feel a bit of sorry for the ever-lasting bridesmaid called Bolshunov. Hopefully he'll win something one day too.
 
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zarnack said:
KZD said:
Great race.
Incredible race by Holund, the least expected of the Norwegians gets a surprising win.
Bolshunov with another fantastic race he has an amazing recovery capacity, but gets another second (he almost needs an Alexander Bolshunov is the new Poulidor thread)
Yeah, Holund was least expected, a bit like Krüger was least expected in men's skiathlon in the olympics. But their depth in the team is so deep I guess anyone can do it?

By the way, I wonder if Holund's solo run indicates, how much advantage Norway really has above the rest of the world? I mean obviously Norwegians weren't going to try to catch him, but nobody else could or thought they couldn't do it. Russians skipped ski exchange and tried something, but only Bolshunov had stamina to do something, the rest dropped back.
'
By the way, I feel a bit of sorry for the ever-lasting bridesmaid called Bolshunov. Hopefully he'll win something one day too.
It's more that, in the general World Cup, they can start several more athletes, in the World Championships they only get to start 4, and they have a large number to choose from so they often take several and pick and choose as they go. Pretty much all other teams, if they had an athlete of Holund's level, would probably have had him in at least the skiathlon and the 15k, if not the relay too, whereas Norway's embarrassment of riches means that they could afford to drop him into the race fresh.
 
BullsFan22 said:
Bolshunov, clearly the strongest and most universal skier in the world right now. Unfortunately he lost another race tactically. The silver lining is that he’s barely 22, so if he stays healthy and motivated, he’ll win many golds in the future.
Well, we do not know if he has already hit his physical peak. And if he doesn't get stronger over the years I don't see how he can win lots of gold, if he doesn't improve tactically. Also, as Kingjr points out, he's not unlikely to burn out at a young age with all the races he's running.
 
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Re: Re:

Libertine Seguros said:
To be fair, the Russians were having a lot of trouble organising a chase because of the way Røthe and Sundby were working to disrupt them, and the work they did when the Norwegians went to the ski change called their bluff, Bolshunov immediately attacked. The two Norwegians did get on the front at this point and caught the other Russians, but Bolshunov managed to get more of a gap. I think at that point they were conflicted because they probably didn't expect to win from the sprint at the end there with Røthe and Sundby, but didn't want to pull others that may want to attack Holund's gap across. Maybe they simply bluffed that Bolshunov would tire because he'd done every race and trusted Hans Christer to take it to the line while they held everybody back, or maybe they did push it comparatively late on to try to chase Bolshunov but didn't have enough so when they realised they weren't going to catch him, settled for the bronze and relaxed the pace again.
To be honest, in this case I'd say Norwegians are too afraid of others. They are so above others that there is no point to play cat-and-mouse and disrupt. If Krüger, Sundby, Röthe together had started pushing I doubt many would have lived with them. And all three would have also kept their own personal gold medal chances alive. Would be exciting for viewers too if they were pushing instead of cruising around.
 
Re: Re:

Libertine Seguros said:
zarnack said:
KZD said:
Great race.
Incredible race by Holund, the least expected of the Norwegians gets a surprising win.
Bolshunov with another fantastic race he has an amazing recovery capacity, but gets another second (he almost needs an Alexander Bolshunov is the new Poulidor thread)
Yeah, Holund was least expected, a bit like Krüger was least expected in men's skiathlon in the olympics. But their depth in the team is so deep I guess anyone can do it?

By the way, I wonder if Holund's solo run indicates, how much advantage Norway really has above the rest of the world? I mean obviously Norwegians weren't going to try to catch him, but nobody else could or thought they couldn't do it. Russians skipped ski exchange and tried something, but only Bolshunov had stamina to do something, the rest dropped back.
'
By the way, I feel a bit of sorry for the ever-lasting bridesmaid called Bolshunov. Hopefully he'll win something one day too.
It's more that, in the general World Cup, they can start several more athletes, in the World Championships they only get to start 4, and they have a large number to choose from so they often take several and pick and choose as they go. Pretty much all other teams, if they had an athlete of Holund's level, would probably have had him in at least the skiathlon and the 15k, if not the relay too, whereas Norway's embarrassment of riches means that they could afford to drop him into the race fresh.
Meanwhile today at Vasaloppet Norway took all the top 5 and in the Scandinavian Cup the best non-norwegian was 17th. Says it all.
 
Cance > TheRest said:
BullsFan22 said:
Bolshunov, clearly the strongest and most universal skier in the world right now. Unfortunately he lost another race tactically. The silver lining is that he’s barely 22, so if he stays healthy and motivated, he’ll win many golds in the future.
Well, we do not know if he has already hit his physical peak. And if he doesn't get stronger over the years I don't see how he can win lots of gold, if he doesn't improve tactically. Also, as Kingjr points out, he's not unlikely to burn out at a young age with all the races he's running.
And Klaebo might get stronger on longer distances in future.
 
Bolshunov will get his gold at some point. It took Sundby a long time. Holund gave up his career ten years ago, but changed his mind and decided to keep fighting. Well deserved!
 

Singer01

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I'm just pleased the ski jumpers didn't have last year's form.
Of their 3 dominant athletes in sports that employ xc skiing who is most/least likely to end up 'statistically' as the greatest in their sport? I Personally don't see how Riiber and Klaebo don't end up setting new records for wins. I suppose JTB is least likely just because how much of an outlier OEB is (I now think it's less than 50% chance Fourcade overhauls him).
On the women's side TJ never catches Bjoergen, but will be well clear in 2nd.
Too much strength, too much money.
 
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meat puppet said:
Norway pulled a quickstep with terpstra. This is solely on the others. When norway had 3 left in case holund is caught you just close those attacks down and think later. Holund got 30-40sec free.
Bolshunov said that he was ready to work with his teammates who didn't go into the pitstop to try and close on Holund, but they didn't, or simply couldn't. Belov, Spitsov and Melnichenko, who were up there at the front, didn't seem too bothered in chasing. There was no teamwork, just every man for himself. In the end only Melnichenko stayed with the front of the chasing pack, so perhaps physically they were not able to go. On the other hand, when Bolshunov upped the pace, they worked as a roadblock to the other chasers. I blame skiers like Cologna, Harvey, Manificat, Musgrave, even the lackluster Swedes for not trying something. They didn't go with Holund and they didn't go with Bolshunov when he went. I don't know what they were expecting was going to happen. Did they think it was a 100km instead of 50? The pace was never super high. Nobody really decided to race today, except the two men up front.
 
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Singer01 said:
I'm just pleased the ski jumpers didn't have last year's form.
Of their 3 dominant athletes in sports that employ xc skiing who is most/least likely to end up 'statistically' as the greatest in their sport. I Personally don't see how Riiber and Klaebo don't end up setting new records for wins. I suppose JTB is least likely just because how much of an outlier OEB is (I now think it's less than 50% chance Fourcade overhauls him).
On the women's side TJ never catches Bjoergen, but will be well clear in 2nd.
If they keep having that many sprints each season, and the Russian men drop off completely, then Klaebo will keep winning. Nobody in terms of a team comes close to Norway except the Russians.

I don't follow nordic combined, so I can't comment on the tendencies there.
 
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BullsFan22 said:
I blame skiers like Cologna, Harvey, Manificat, Musgrave, even the lackluster Swedes for not trying something. They didn't go with Holund and they didn't go with Bolshunov when he went. I don't know what they were expecting was going to happen. Did they think it was a 100km instead of 50? The pace was never super high. Nobody really decided to race today, except the two men up front.
But you have to consider these guys are not as good as Norwegians or Russians. I saw Burman at the front of the chasing group a few times. But you can't expect a guy like him to push for gold or catch anyone. Manificat actually ended up outside top 30, so totally out of form.

I blame the other Norwegians being lazy and not making a close race for gold. It was clear Bolshunov was the only non-Norwegian able to go for gold. The Norwegians shouldn't have been so reserved and went for their own individual golds as well. Like Holund, Krüger got his only chance in this event. Didn't he want to take this chance? Didn't Röthe/Sundby want to become real ski kings of Seefeld?
 

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