Johaug and Sundby win Ruka Triple
Norway's Therese Johaug and Martin Johnsrud Sundby won the 2015 Ruka Triple mini-tour. It was Johaug's first season opening mini-tour victory as Marit Bjoergen had won the previous four. Sundby kept his winning streak alive by taking his sixth consecutive Tour victory. Both Johaug and Sundby skied away from all chasers during today's pursuit competition to comfortably cross the line first and claim the season's first Tour titles.
In the ladies' competition it was Stina Nilsson (SWE) - best known for her sprinting success - that broke away from the chasing pack to claim second place +22.6 seconds behind Johaug's winning time of 27:22.3. In third place was Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg (NOR) who showed as well that she is not just a sprinter finishing +32.4 off the lead.
Johaug and Nilsson both recorded the top two times on the day with Nilsson just +11.4 back from Johaug. Third fastest on the day was Finland's Kerttu Niskanen +21.3
On the men's side, Sundby put down an aggressive pace leaving the others to battle for the remaining podium spots. Petter Northug Jr. who at times skied towards the back of the chasing pack moved his way forward over the final kilometers to claim second place +44.7 back. Finn Haagen Krogh (NOR) - who started the day just behind Sundby - was caught by the large chase pack but hung tough and out lunged Italy's Francesco De Fabiani for third place at the finish +46.5 off the lead.
Norway's Niklas Dyrhaug who was fastest on the day just 1.9 seconds ahead of Sundby and 2.4 seconds ahead of Sjur Roethe.
Therese Johaug, NOR
It was very hard today, the conditions were difficult. I was missing the grip on the uphills. I had to step out of the tracks. It is great to start the season with the first place in Ruka. I am really satisfied. I tried to focus on myself from the beginning. I got the information I was winning some seconds on the chase group.
Stina Nilsson, SWE
It was really hard to climb the uphills. It was better when I stepped out of the track. I trained a lot in the summer to improve my endurance. It is great to see all the work pays off.
Ingvild Flugstad Østberg, NOR
It is my first podium in a distance race. I have been working for several years to become an allrounder. I knew Therese will go really fast from the beginning. I wanted to stay with the chase group.
Martin Johnsrud Sundby, NOR
It is a good start of the World Cup season. Today’s race was tougher than yesterday. I wanted the other guys think they cannot catch me but I started way too fast. I got extremely tired. After 7.5 km I did not know how to continue. I am happy I am leaving Ruka with the overall victory in the mini-tour.
Petter Northug Jr., NOR
It was a very tough race. The speed was very high at the beginning. I tried to follow Toenseth and De Fabiani in the last lap. I knew I had 1 or 2 gears left and I was in a good position before the finishing straight.
Finn Hågen Krogh, NOR
It was really hard. I thought I was skiing by myself but the group was always chasing me. The plan was to ski slower in the uphills and be faster on the flats. I am really happy to beat De Fabiani in the finish
LADIES - 10 km C Pursuit
1. JOHAUG Therese NOR 27:22.3
2. NILSSON Stina SWE +22.6
3. OESTBERG Ingvild Flugstad NOR +32.4
4. INGEMARSDOTTER Ida SWE +42.5
5. NISKANEN Kerttu FIN +57.0
Complete ladies' pursuit results available HERE.
Fastest of the Day
1. JOHAUG Therese 27:22.3
2. NILSSON Stina SWE +11.4
3. NISKANEN Kerttu FIN +21.3
4. OESTBERG Ingvild Flugstad NOR +32.0
5. INGEMARSDOTTER Ida SWE +36.8
Complete ladies' results for fast of the day available HERE.
MEN - 15 km C Pursuit
1. SUNDBY Martin Johnsrud NOR 37:10.0
2. NORTHUG Petter Jr. NOR +44.7
3. KROGH Finn Haagen NOR +46.5
4. DE FABIANI Francesco ITA +46.6
5. DYRHAUG Niklas NOR +48.5
Complete men's pursuit results available HERE.
Fastest of the Day
1. DYRHAUG Niklas 37:08.1
2. SUNDBY Martin Johnsrud +1.9
3. ROETHE Sjur +2.4
4. HOLUND Hans Christer +4.0
5. DE FABIANI Francesco +6.3
Complete men's results for fastest of the day available HERE.