Rickardsson took the stage victory
First WC victory for Rickardsson
Daniel Rickardsson from Sweden won the 6th stage of the FIS Tour de Ski. For the 10 km individual start competition in classical technique he needed only 23:14.5 seconds and finished 1,7 seconds ahead of Lukas Bauer (CZE), who lost the victory in the last few meters. On third place finished Tour leader Petter Northug (NOR), 6,2 seconds behind Rickardsson.
Bauer and Rickardsson were leading the race all the way, where also Northug was stable on the third place. Axel Teichmann, who finished fourth, increased his speed from the start to the end as usual while last year's Tour de Ski winner Dario Cologna (SUI) couldn't keep the fourth place from the first intermediate times and took only the 8th place at the end. Devon Kershaw, who was until km 7,2 always under the top ten broke his binding on the last few kilometers and finished therefore only on place 37.
In the overall ranking, Northug increased his lead and is now 20,1 seconds ahead of Markus Hellner (SWE) who finished 5th today. Axel Teichmann is on the third position with a gap of 29,5 seconds while Dario Cologna is 4th. Still nine athletes count to candiates for the podium what garantuees us an exciting Tour de Ski Final.
On Saturday, the 7th stage will take place in Val di Fiemme, a 20 km classical mass start race with 5 intermediate sprint points during the race where the top three athletes can get 15-10 or 5 bonus seconds. In addition to that, also bonus seconds will be awarded in the finish to the top three.
Daniel Rickardsson - winner of the day
I am very happy about my race today. It is my first victory on the World Cup level so it is amazing. My tactics was to race fast in the first lap and maintain speed in the second one as well.I felt quite in the good shape in the morning. Usually I am stronger in classic technique. The next race on Saturday is in classic technique too so I could be in a good shape there as well. The final climb is very tough so we will see.
Simen Oestensen - Tour Sprint leader
I am glad I wear the black bib for the best sprinter. On Saturday, bonus seconds will be distributed 5 times on the course and once in the finish so I will fight for some of them. We have not talked about any team strategy with Petter so far. He will race for bonus seconds too so it will be tough race. My goal is to win th black jersey. I have not thought about the Final Climb so far.
Petter Northug - Tour de Ski leader
I am very statisfied with today's race. I started from behind so I had a good overview. In the middle of the race I was feeling a bit tired but then it was better. Simen will fight for the sprint jersey and I would like to win some bonus seconds too. I will have to be all the race in front to controll the race.