Falla and Northug win Drammen city sprint
Maiken Caspersen Falla and Petter Northug Jr. both of Norway from won the 1.2 km classic technique city sprint in Drammen, Norway.
On the ladies side, Falla has now equaled Marit Bjørgen (NOR) and Virpi Kuitunen (FIN) as the only athletes to win three times in Drammen in the ladies’ competition. Falla becomes the first to win in Drammen three consecutive years. Join Falla on the podium was her teammate Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg +0.81 seconds back and in third for her first podium this season Russia's Natalia Matveeva +3.27. Sweden's Stina Nilsson was the third athlete across the finish line but was given a "ranked as last" penalty for obstruction on Finland's Krista Parmakoski on the finish stretch. As a result Nilsson moved to 6th in the final, giving Matveeva the third place finish. It was Matveeva's first classic sprint podium since 2012. Despite the penalty, Nilsson remains the overall Sprint World Cup lead by 18 points over Oestberg.
Petter Northug Jr, the 2015 World Champion in sprint won his first individual World Cup since 2014 with his victory today in Drammen. It was a Norwegian sweep of the podium and the 11th time in 12 visits to Drammen that a Norwegian male won the competition. In second place for his first podium of the year was Ola Vigen Hattestad +0.41 and in third was Eirik Brandsdal, last year's winner +0.47 back. It was a photo finish between Hattestad and Brandsdal.
Maiken Caspersen Falla, NOR
I’m really happy to be healthy again and to be racing. It feels great to be back. I love the track here in Drammen. It is amazing to win here three times in the row.
Ingvild Flugstad Østber, NOR
I’m really happy for being third today, I am on the right way now again. Maiken was strong and I am happy for her to win for the 3rd time.
Natalia Matveeva, RUS
It is little bit surprising to be third today, however, I did feel very good today. It is my best result of the season. I gave everything I had in the finishing stretch.
Petter Northug Jr., NOR
I felt really good energy today. It’s fun to win competitions again.
Ola Vigen Hattestad, NOR
I haven’t had such a good season. I was really nervous before today. It was the highlight of the season for me. I made the decision to go on skate skis just before the final. I am really happy to be second.
Eirik Brandsdal, NOR
Third place is for sure good and I am satisfied with being on the podium. Looking back I should have maybe switched to skate skis. The glide changed during the day. In the downhill it became a big a difference and it was too much to catch the other guys.
LADIES - 1.2 km Sprint Classic
1. FALLA Maiken Caspersen NOR 2:57.96
2. OESTBERG Ingvild Flugstad NOR +0.81
3. MATVEEVA Natalia RUS +3.27
4. PARMAKOSKI Krista FIN +4.28
4. WENG Heidi NOR +8.69
5. NILSSON Stina SWE Ranked as Last (RAL)
Complete ladies' sprint results are available HERE.
MEN - 1.2 km Sprint Classic
1. NORTHUG Petter Jr. NOR 2:38.95
2. HATTESTAD Ola Vigen NOR +0.41(PF)
3. BRANDSDAL Eirik NOR +0.47(PF)
4. KROGH Finn Haagen NOR +1.98
5. PETERSON Teodor SWE +2.13
6. PANZHINSKIY Alexander RUS +11.51
Complete men's sprint results area available HERE.