Bjoergen wins record 4th Holmenkollen 30km
Norway's Marit Bjoergen thrilled the home crowd with her record breaking 4th Holmenkollen victory. It also marked the 100th time that she has been on the podium in her World Cup career. As well it was her 66th career World Cup win. In second place was last year's winner Therese Johaug of Norway. In third was Kerttu Niskanen of Finland. Bjørgen had won the 30km World Cup in Holmenkollen on three previous occasions: 2005, 2010, 2012 and now 2014.
Bjoergen collected all possible bonus points on the course today for a total of 60 and with her 100 points for the victory she now trails Johaug by just 39 points in the overall World Cup standings heading into the World Cup finals weekend in Falun, Sweden.
The early pace in the ladies' competition separated the lead group quickly . With Bjoergen and Johaug breaking away shortly after the first bonus sprint. Skiing together in the next group was a pair of Finns with Niskanen and Aino-Kaisa Saarinen and a pair of Swede's Emma Wiken, and Charlotte Kalla taking up the chase. After the second lap both Norwegians and Swedes opted to change skis but both Finns stayed on the same pair of the entire competition. Kalla and Niskanen skied together towards the end of the 30 km with Niskanen getting away for third. Saarinen came to the line just ahead of Wiken. Bjoergen had almost a two minute lead when arriving in the stadium and took time and collect a Norwegian flag on the homestretch before crossing the finish line.
Marit Bjørgen (NOR)
I felt great today and both pairs of my skis were great. Up to Frogneseteren I noticed Therese was not close behind and I decided to go hard. I knew I had to ski in front to be fighting for bonus points. If I am to win the Overall World Cup I have to be good and faster than Therese next three competitions.
Therese Johaug (NOR)
I felt much better than last week. I am happy to be second today. Marit was much stronger than me, I did not have chance. I was struggling with grip skiing up to Frognerseteren. I tried to focus on myself when Marit went away. I was little bit worried that Kerttu and Charlotte are coming from behind to catch me. I am looking forward to Falun.
Kerttu Niskanen (FIN)
I am very happy for the third place. It was great skiing at Holmenkollen today with thrilling atmosphere and big crowds. Before the race we had a plan to change skis maybe once. During the competition I spoke with Aino-Kaisa and we decided not to change. I tried to keep a steady pace and I almost did not realise me getting away from Charlotte. I am very happy for my brother, he has been in a great shape. This morning he told me to be better than him.
OFFICIAL RESULTS - Ladies 30 km classic
1. BJOERGEN Marit NOR 1:20:55.7
2. JOHAUG Therese NOR +1:41.2
3. NISKANEN Kerttu FIN +2:25.8
4. KALLA Charlotte SWE +2:46.6
5. SAARINEN Aino-Kaisa FIN +3:08.9
Complete results are available HERE.
OVERALL WORLD CUP STANDINGS
1. JOHAUG Therese NOR 1281 pts
2. BJOERGEN Marit NOR 1242 pts
3. JACOBSEN Astrid Uhrenholdt NOR 965 pts
OVERALL DISTANCE STANDINGS
1. JOHAUG Therese NOR 700 pts
2. BJOERGEN Marit NOR 659 pts
3. NISKANEN Kerttu FIN 459 pts