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Nordic Skiing/Biathlon Thread

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Meanwhile Matteo Tanel, who won the rollerski overall world cup and the individual wc race (spitsov finished 3rd, Terentev 4th and Chervotkin 5th) is patrolling on the alpine skiing slopes of my hometown as a cop during the week and racing Marathons on the weekend, because he didn't make the national team because of politics. You can't tell me that anyone besides De Fa and Pellegrino deserves a spot over a 63kg lightweight with that kind of potential, typical Italian skiing federation bs...
 
Who would have thought that Denise Herrmann would hold her nerve and clean the last shoot. Commiserations to Chevalier and Alimbakeva. Unreal last lap by Voigt. Looks like the Germans had had enough with average results.
TBF last time she entered an Individual before today Denise podiumed. She has two wins and four podiums in the discipline and the last time she missed the top 20 in an Individual was 2018 (!!!). I guess that the longer ski loops and the individual start means she's able to take a little longer over the shoot without jeopardising things, similar to how Davidová has two wins out of the last 3 races in the format, she's a good skier and a pretty accurate - but slow - shot, which costs her less in the Individual as the punishment for a missed target is more than doubled, so the value of taking time on the shoot is increased.

Voigt has had a couple of surprisingly quick ski times this season, often early in a competition block, but those were around the 15th mark for ski time, today she was 5th fastest which is a big outlier. However Voigt is also somebody who was kind of low on the German prospect totem pole a few years ago and has absolutely dug in and made huge improvements off her own back to break into the team and has done a similar job to what Franziska Hildebrand did back in 2011-12 and Erik Lesser did in 2012-13 - not having been spectacular and not really fitting the kind of skillset that is going to excite many for their prospects but just continually being better than expected until able to earn a place in the central core of the team.

A few other surprises due largely to shooting - Deedra Irwin is particularly notable, she's a 29-year-old late convert from XC skiing who hasn't been doing biathlon long, her ski time was only 25th but she was shooting incredibly for most of the race. Before today her career best was 36th; and Iryna Petrenko (née Varvynets) who has come back to the sport after some time out starting a family, and who hit 20/20 to get her best result in five years. Strange that Semerenko and Blashko DNSed while Dzhima and Petrenko did so well, although I saw something flash up in the news yesterday with a picture of Blashko in her hotel room so wonder if it's a Covid issue after they'd announced the startlist so couldn't replace them.

A bit surprised Norway went with Kalkenberg as the fourth started ahead of Ida Lien who could have medaled this race at the Worlds last year but for a mess in the final shoot, I guess it's about rotation with Ida being probably better suited to sprint/pursuit and certainly neither Knotten or Kalkenberg have covered themselves in glory in relays this year so I assume Lien will be the fourth athlete in that.
 
Just rewatched the race again. Absolutely crazy how much time Bolshounov and Spitsov gained in everyone in the First 3.75 km of skating. They were absolutely flying after the Change while everyone else wasnlooking cooked as hell.
IT will be interesting to See what Happens to Kleabo. If Temperaturen stay Like this He could be a real liabilty for the relay.

I have a feeling it won't matter. Russians might destroy them on the classic legs.
 
TBF last time she entered an Individual before today Denise podiumed. She has two wins and four podiums in the discipline and the last time she missed the top 20 in an Individual was 2018 (!!!). I guess that the longer ski loops and the individual start means she's able to take a little longer over the shoot without jeopardising things, similar to how Davidová has two wins out of the last 3 races in the format, she's a good skier and a pretty accurate - but slow - shot, which costs her less in the Individual as the punishment for a missed target is more than doubled, so the value of taking time on the shoot is increased.

Voigt has had a couple of surprisingly quick ski times this season, often early in a competition block, but those were around the 15th mark for ski time, today she was 5th fastest which is a big outlier. However Voigt is also somebody who was kind of low on the German prospect totem pole a few years ago and has absolutely dug in and made huge improvements off her own back to break into the team and has done a similar job to what Franziska Hildebrand did back in 2011-12 and Erik Lesser did in 2012-13 - not having been spectacular and not really fitting the kind of skillset that is going to excite many for their prospects but just continually being better than expected until able to earn a place in the central core of the team.

A few other surprises due largely to shooting - Deedra Irwin is particularly notable, she's a 29-year-old late convert from XC skiing who hasn't been doing biathlon long, her ski time was only 25th but she was shooting incredibly for most of the race. Before today her career best was 36th; and Iryna Petrenko (née Varvynets) who has come back to the sport after some time out starting a family, and who hit 20/20 to get her best result in five years. Strange that Semerenko and Blashko DNSed while Dzhima and Petrenko did so well, although I saw something flash up in the news yesterday with a picture of Blashko in her hotel room so wonder if it's a Covid issue after they'd announced the startlist so couldn't replace them.

A bit surprised Norway went with Kalkenberg as the fourth started ahead of Ida Lien who could have medaled this race at the Worlds last year but for a mess in the final shoot, I guess it's about rotation with Ida being probably better suited to sprint/pursuit and certainly neither Knotten or Kalkenberg have covered themselves in glory in relays this year so I assume Lien will be the fourth athlete in that.

Deedra Irwin hails from the Midwest and skied for the Sun Valley elite team before switching to biathlon. Almost a clone of Dunklee and Egan in terms of a career path. I know back in 2014 she started doing some biathlon tryouts that the USBA sponsored. I believe Egan was also there.

No disrespect to her but we can safely mark this result as a fluke.

Italian and Russian women were disastrous today, except for Reztsova, who revived nicely to clear the last shoot and make up 11 sports to finish 9th. I don’t know the ski times but she looked to be one of the faster performers to my eyes.

Voigt was big surprise, her ski speed especially. We’ll see what happens in the next races, but it looks like the Germans have come back to much better form.
 
Comedy of errors in the ski jumping. Apparently Althaus, Takanashi and Iraschko-Stolz have lost weight in the last two days since the women's NH competition; they have been DQed for suit violations. However, as eight teams go through to the second round, and China were bottom on points total, it comes down to the scores of the three remaining athletes, so Japan and Austria can continue into the second round but Germany are eliminated as their three remaining athletes scored the fewest of those three countries.

That doesn't, however, explain why Japan were listed as 6th without Takanashi's score, so they have now been shuffled down to 8th. That does, however, really heavily reduce the number of medal contenders as even staying in the competition, Austria and Japan who could have been medal contenders are now massively handicapped whether they allow Takanashi and Iraschko-Stolz to jump or not, and Germany of course are out entirely. Norway and Slovenia are now practically guaranteed a medal seeing as they have four world class athletes in their squads, Russia is best placed for bronze, and teams without any actual depth (Canada have one world class level competitor in each gender, Loutitt and Boyd-Clowes, and Poland have world class men but aren't competitive among the women) could make it to bronze.

I mean, the suit rules are there and if they've been broken they've been broken, but when the depth in the field is so unevenly distributed even before Covid starts eliminating people from competition and you remove three of the biggest nations from competition it can't help but feel a bit underwhelming.
 
I have a feeling it won't matter. Russians might destroy them on the classic legs.

I am not 100% sure. Of course the Russians have two, or three (with Maltsev finishing a respectable 9th, though i expect more from him in the skate half) strong skiers, who will ski the opening leg? Chervotkin was poor yesterday. He doesn’t like altitude as much, but this was way below any expectations. I assume they’ll still have him do the 15km classic, but if he flops there as well he is out of the team. Yakimushkin was one of the guys that Välbe wanted to put in the skiathlon, but he and his coach declined and opted to focus on the other distance races, and Cramer convinced her to give Ustiugov a shot. Of course Ustiugov had some back problems last week and they decided not to risk anything and he pulled out. He’s doing the sprint tomorrow and if he has a good race he’s definitely getting a spot in two relay races, after that he may even get a spot in the 50, but that depends on the sprint and the regular relay. My opinion is that in good form he could have stayed with Spitsov and the two Norwegians yesterday and he’s a better skater than all of them, even though Holund and Spitsov have high capacities as well and their best results have come in these types of grueling races. Now, do they risk putting Ustiugov in the 15km? Individual classic is his least successful discipline, but he had a 5th place in Ruka on a tough course and cold conditions and on close to sea level altitude. Maltsev was able to put a good race together yesterday, and likely gave himself a chance to be named for the relay and the 50. But once again, who will race which leg, specifically, the first leg?

Terentev skied an excellent first leg in Lillehammer, the only relay so far this season, but that was over two months ago and the course is almost flat compared to the one in China. He’s out of the equation. Chervotkin, to repeat myself, was way back yesterday. He was fighting to get his skis going. His technique isn’t upright enough and some of these hills don’t suit that sort of skiing. Will Maltsev ski the opening leg? Maybe they want to put in Spitsov in there and then Bolshunov, Maltsev and Ustiugov. Yakimushkin will have to prove himself in the 15km, and has to be in the top 10 (at least) to have a shot at the relay.

The Norwegians are definitely disadvantaged without Krüger, maybe severely so. He’s their best man at altitude and without him and with Røthe in poor form they don’t have many options for the third leg. You have to have Golberg in the first leg. Holund and Klæbo for the skate legs, but who is the second classic skier? Valnes? Can he really hang on at that altitude, slow snow and tough course, especially if he’s going up against an in form Bolshunov? Do they risk putting Holund in second and maybe Røthe in third? Where’s Amundsen? Can they get Krüger back to race the relay? I don’t think Iversen is the right solution for the relay. The Russians seemed to have played their cards right in only choosing one sprint specialist (Terentjev) and not taking Retivykh. The Norwegians took two sprint specialists and we’ll see what Klæbo does in the 15km.
 
Deedra Irwin hails from the Midwest and skied for the Sun Valley elite team before switching to biathlon. Almost a clone of Dunklee and Egan in terms of a career path. I know back in 2014 she started doing some biathlon tryouts that the USBA sponsored. I believe Egan was also there.

No disrespect to her but we can safely mark this result as a fluke.

Italian and Russian women were disastrous today, except for Reztsova, who revived nicely to clear the last shoot and make up 11 sports to finish 9th. I don’t know the ski times but she looked to be one of the faster performers to my eyes.

Voigt was big surprise, her ski speed especially. We’ll see what happens in the next races, but it looks like the Germans have come back to much better form.
Voigt and Herrmann also were the two they rested in Antholz (only doing the Mass Start). Plus Preuß is back, although not spectacularly.

I suspect they may well have staked the whole season on the Olympics once Preuß got hurt in Annecy. The Olympics are always the key event of any season they are part of, but ongoing World Cup competition and Nations Cup etc. probably went out the window when they lost their best bank of consistent points, Preuß was 3rd in the World Cup last year in the same way Henkel used to be when Neuner and co. were around.

Nigmatullina and Mironova appeared to have swapped lives for the day, Nigmatullina was 11th fastest on the skis which is very outlying for her too, but countered that with appalling shooting, worst on the day. Mironova shot much more reliably but was minutes back on the skis, she has regressed on the skis this season for sure but this was a worse day than usual. Burtasova has struggled for ski speed this season, as a result she hasn't done a World Cup race all season and was here because of the disrupted preparation for Vasnetcova (who only got the clearance to compete this morning) and Kazakevich, so I can't really dunk on her too much, although it is nevertheless true that we know for a fact that she's a better competitor than this.

Another outlyingly good ski time is Anna Juppe, up in 16th, she also comes from an XC background but is very young and inexperienced.
 
According to the jumpers the measurements were done differently to how they are usually carried out and almost every competitor that was called in for suit controls failed.

Great decision to do this in the olympics and not in another competition. :confused2:
 
I would have said they were clear favorites and it was a well deserved win.

Absolutely they deserved to win, I was going for them, and the 1, 3 they had in the women’s individual was great. If Prevc can overcome the 4th place he had then I think more is in store for them. They may end up carrying the Slovenian delegation the entire games. Lampič has a good chance at a medal tomorrow, but after that they’ll be hard pressed to win another medal outside ski jumping. Perhaps a surprise or two in the alpine events. In any case, it’s already been a ver successful games for them!
 
Deedra Irwin hails from the Midwest and skied for the Sun Valley elite team before switching to biathlon. Almost a clone of Dunklee and Egan in terms of a career path. I know back in 2014 she started doing some biathlon tryouts that the USBA sponsored. I believe Egan was also there.

No disrespect to her but we can safely mark this result as a fluke.

She also pulled off a decent leg in the women's relay in Antholz, where the US team made the top 5 for the first time in a WC race, though it obviously wasn't against the very best opposition.

But many biathletes can of course achieve top results in the individual as long as they don't shoot like Vittozzi or ski like Ukaleq Slettemark. Slettemark did manage to beat her father's result from Vancouver though. And if she can shoot like that during the sprint she may qualify for the pursuit as well.
Her main goal this season is the junior WC after the Olympics. She won the individual at the 2019 youth WC, becoming the first ever Greenlandic gold medal winner in an international championship, so I'm looking forward to following her progression during the next Olympic cycle.
 
She also pulled off a decent leg in the women's relay in Antholz, where the US team made the top 5 for the first time in a WC race, though it obviously wasn't against the very best opposition.

But many biathletes can of course achieve top results in the individual as long as they don't shoot like Vittozzi or ski like Ukaleq Slettemark. Slettemark did manage to beat her father's result from Vancouver though. And if she can shoot like that during the sprint she may qualify for the pursuit as well.
Her main goal this season is the junior WC after the Olympics. She won the individual at the 2019 youth WC, becoming the first ever Greenlandic gold medal winner in an international championship, so I'm looking forward to following her progression during the next Olympic cycle.

It's sad to see what's happened to Vittozzi. Covid has physically set her back, missed training. Her shooting has been impacted a lot as well. She's way off form. The last two seasons have a been a disaster. I also think that losing the overall WC battle to Wierer has had psychological impact on her as well. She just can't catch a break.
 
It's sad to see what's happened to Vittozzi. Covid has physically set her back, missed training. Her shooting has been impacted a lot as well. She's way off form. The last two seasons have a been a disaster. I also think that losing the overall WC battle to Wierer has had psychological impact on her as well. She just can't catch a break.
She has started working with a mental coach, but a new shooting coach would also be a good idea.
Her shooting has declined since Norway poached Oberegger from the Italian team, loosing the overall WC to Wierer after the later was allowed to skip the relay also messed with her head.
Then Covid ruined last season, her Grandfather died of Covid last April (they were pretty close) and by now the first shooting outside of relays has become a mental thing.
 
She has started working with a mental coach, but a new shooting coach would also be a good idea.
Her shooting has declined since Norway poached Oberegger from the Italian team, loosing the overall WC to Wierer after the later was allowed to skip the relay also messed with her head.
Then Covid ruined last season, her Grandfather died of Covid last April (they were pretty close) and by now the first shooting outside of relays has become a mental thing.

Wow. I didn’t know about the loss of her grandfather. That’s a lot of problems she’s had to try endure and move on from in the last two years.
 
According to the jumpers the measurements were done differently to how they are usually carried out and almost every competitor that was called in for suit controls failed.

Great decision to do this in the olympics and not in another competition. :confused2:

The rules are clear, no less than 1cm and not more than 3cm from the body to the suit. If they beforehand found the way to cheat because of the imperfect way of measuring then that's not an excuse.

I hear the Russians took an expert in ski jumping suits instead of the one of the coaches to the Games, maybe they were the ones to notice the fault in the measuring system?
 
The rules are clear, no less than 1cm and not more than 3cm from the body to the suit. If they beforehand found the way to cheat because of the imperfect way of measuring then that's not an excuse.
Depending on how you sit, stand, lie down, hold your hands and body posture this seemingly clear and objective measurement is not very clear at all. Perhaps this new way of measuring is better but the decision to do something different in the olympics compared to before is questionable.
 
Good for him, any news about Heidi Weng?
Without her the women's team could be in trouble in the relay.
yeah, if he also managed to stay in good shape, definitely. Weng is back in Norway as well, but apart from that, I haven't found any news.

Any ideas for the sprint tomorrow?
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looks like not so easy a course, and the snow conditions will probably be slow again as well. Hard enough for the types of Bolshunov or Nepryaeva to get involved again?