First victory for Artem Zhmurko
24-year-old Artem Zhmurko took in his second World Cup race his first victory ever. The Russian newcomer finished the today's Pursuit over 2 x 15 km in a time of 1:15.23min, 0,9 seconds ahead of his team mate Ilia Chernousov. The success of the Russian team made Sergej Shiriaev complete who won the sprint for the third place just ahead of the German René Sommerfeldt.
For Zmurko it was after winning last year the 30 km at the Universiade and the 9th place last week at the World Cup in Otepää the greatest success in his career so far while Ilia Chernousov also managed his first World Cup podium ever.
The competition was animated with the intermediate sprints for World Cup points. Three times the athletes had the chance to fight for them. René Sommerfeldt was one of the most dominate racers for it and took during the race already 30 World Cup points. But at the end, the race was decided on the last uphill and the finish sprint between seven athletes.
In the overall World Cup ranking nothing has changed after the today's race. Still Petter Norhtug (NOR) is in the lead ahead of Lukas Bauer and Marcus Hellner. René Sommerfeldt moved a big step forward to the seventh in the World Cup ranking by winning in total 80 points today. Also the distance World Cup ranking stays the same like yesterday: Northug ahead of Bauer and Hellner.
Artem Zhmurko (RUS)
I'm so happy about my first place! Classic part was quite hard for me but I tried to keep up. Free technique part went better, I stayed in the leading group all the time and managed to go ahead at the finish. I had no special tactic, I just tried to ski as fast as possible.
I'm satisfied with my podium place because the competitors were really strong. I always kept my eye on Germans and Italians.
Ilia Chernousov (RUS)
I'm glad to be the third today. It was a tough fight but the audience was very supportive and my skis were well prepared so I could compete successfully. Thanks to all!
Sergej Shiriaev (RUS)