Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg secured the Pursuit victory. UPDATED

31 January 2011 12:17

Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg from Norway won the 7,5 km +7,5 km Pursuit competition of the U23 World Championships in Otepää.

The young Norwegian races finished the challenging course in 41:55.5min, just 6,4 seconds ahead her team mate Ingunn Britt Nydal. Kerttu Niskanen (FIN) could celebrate after a tough race the third place by finishing 7,4 seconds behind Oestberg.

Oestberg and Niskanen controlled the race in the classical part of the race while Oestberg tried to escape at the first climb after the change to free technique. A small gap she could make but Niskanen and as well Nydal closed it. Another attack came from Oestberg and from the trio only a duo with Oestberg and Nydal was left. Niskanen had some problems to follow but was never far behind. It seemed like Oestberg controlled the race, was making on the final kilometers a small gap to her team mate Nydal and claimed victory.

The sixth time Junior World Champion Oestberg won with her success today her first victory at U23 World Championships.


Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg (NOR)

I was hoping for a medal today. I knew it was going to be a hard race and I am very happy to be first. Kerttu (Niskanen) was skiing very fast at the classic part and I tried to hang on. Skating part was quite good for me, but Britt (Ingunn Nydal) was going very fast so it was hard. I was not sure about the win. I thought someone was going to ski faster than me. The next competition will be the Scandinavian Cup.

Britt Ingunn Nydal (NOR)

It isn’t a surprise that two Norwegians are here at the podium, but I didn’t expect to be second. I am really happy. Usually I get very tired when I change the skis. Today I took it a bit easier and so I had power when I changed the skis. It was fun. Skis that I used in the skating part were very good. Next competition for me is Scandinavian Cup on Wednesday. I hope to go to World Cup in Drammen also.

Kerttu Niskanen (FIN)

I’m happy. Today was a quite good day. This competition was not my favorite, so I am happy to be third. I don’t know if I would have won the second place. The classic part was not easy for me, but the skating part was quite good. My tactic was to break a gap in the first part, because classical style suits better for me. Next competition for me is in Drammen.