Tour de Ski - Val di Fiemme 10/15 km Classic

06 January 2018 08:35
Oestberg leads Parmakoski in Oberstdorf 2018
Oestberg leads Parmakoski in Oberstdorf 2018 -
NordicFocus

PREVIEW Ladies' 10KM CLASSIC STYLE – Saturday 6 Jan 2018

• Overall Tour de Ski leader Ingvild Flugstad Østberg (NOR) won the 10km classic and the 10km pursuit in Lenzerheide before triumphing in the 10km free in Oberstdorf on Thursday.
• Østberg could become the second athlete after Marit Bjørgen (NOR) in 2014/15 to win the opening four distance events of a Tour de Ski campaign.
• Østberg could become the third athlete after Bjørgen in 2014/15 and Justyna Kowalczyk (POL) in 2012/13 to claim four consecutive distance wins in the Tour de Ski.
• Heidi Weng (NOR), second in the overall, has won two Tour de Ski stages. Both victories came in Val di Fiemme - the 9km pursuit in 2017 and the 10km classic in 2016.
• Last season's Tour de Ski winner Weng could become the second athlete to record back-to-back Tour de Ski victories after Kowalczyk, who won four in a row between 2010 and 2013.
• Weng is on 27 top-three finishes in the Tour de Ski (incl. overall) and needs one more podium spot to join Marit Bjørgen (NOR) in third place all-time, only trailing Kowalczyk (32) and Therese Johaug (NOR, 31).
• Weng's last distance World Cup victory came on 8 January 2017, when she triumphed in the 9km pursuit in Val di Fiemme (Tour de Ski).
• Jessica Diggins (USA), who finished third in the 10km pursuit in Lenzerheide, is looking for her third distance victory in the Tour de Ski. She won the 5km free in Toblach in both 2015/16 and 2016/17.
• Diggins and Weng could both join Østberg as the only athlete to have won a distance race in each of the last three editions of the Tour de Ski (incl. 2017/18).
• Diggins, third in the overall, is hoping to become the first non-European athlete to reach the Tour de Ski overall podium.
• Krista Pärmäkoski (FIN), who finished in third place in the 10km free in Oberstdorf, could record a top-three finish in back-to-back Tour de Ski stages for the first time since January 2013, when she followed up a second place in the 3km classic with a third-place finish in the 10km classic.
• Pärmäkoski, runner-up in last season's edition, could become the second athlete from Finland to claim multiple overall podium spots in the Tour de Ski after Virpi Kuitunen (FIN) - 2007 (1st), 2008 (2nd), 2009 (1st).

PREVIEW Men's 15KM CLASSIC STYLE 

• Overall leader Dario Cologna (SUI) is hoping to claim his fourth Tour de Ski victory and his first since 2012.
• Cologna's current tally of three overall wins (2009, 2011, 2012) already is an all-time men's high. Martin Johnsrud Sundby (NOR), third in the overall, and Lukáš Bauer (CZE) are the only other athletes with multiple victories (2 each).
• Cologna will be 31 years and 302 days old on the day of the final stage and could become the second oldest winner of the Tour de Ski after Bauer, who was 32 years and 145 days old when he triumphed in 2010.
• Cologna, who finished in third place last season, could become the first man to claim seven overall top-three finishes in Tour de Ski history. He currently shares the record of six overall podium spots with Petter Northug (NOR).
• Cologna has won two stages in the Tour de Ski this season, the 15km classic and the 15km pursuit in Lenzerheide, and could record three stage wins in a single edition for the first time in his career. Cologna also won two stages in his 2010/11 winning campaign.
• Only Northug (13) has won more Tour de Ski distance races than Cologna (7).
• Last season's overall winner Sergey Ustiugov (RUS) is hoping to become the second athlete to record back-to-back Tour de Ski wins after Cologna in 2011 and 2012.
• Ustiugov, second in the overall, has recorded a top-two finish in eight of his last 11 Tour de Ski stages. Last race, the 15km free in Oberstdorf, Ustiugov was 28th, his worst result ever in a Tour de Ski stage.
• Ustiugov is on six Tour de Ski stage wins, only trailing Cologna (7) and Northug (13).
• Ustiugov (1st in 2016/17, 3rd in 2015/16) and Sundby (2nd in 2016/17, 1st in 2015/16) are the only athletes to have reached the Tour de Ski overall podium in each of the last two editions.
• Two-time champion Sundby (2014 and 2016) has won three of the last five Tour de Ski stages in Italy, including two 15km classic races.
• Sundby is still looking for his first World Cup victory of the season. His last win came on 11 March, when he won the 50km classic in Oslo.
• Sundby is the only man to have won a World Cup event in each of the previous six seasons (incl. relay/team events).
• Sundby is on 29 individual World Cup wins (incl. Tour stages and overall Tour wins) and needs one more victory to join Gunde Svan (SWE, 30) and Vladimir Smirnov (KAZ, 30) in third place on the all-time list. Only Northug (38) and Bjørn Dæhlie (NOR, 46) have won more.
• Sundby has claimed 42 World Cup victories (individual, relay/team, Tour stages, overall Tour), only trailing Dæhlie (46) and Northug (47).
• Alex Harvey (CAN), fourth in the overall, is hoping to become the first non-European athlete to reach the Tour de Ski overall podium.
• Harvey already is the only non-European athlete with multiple Tour podium finishes (3-Days Tour, Tour de Ski, World Cup Final, Ski Tour Canada). Harvey was runner-up in both the 2016/17 and 2013/14 World Cup Final.
• Harvey can also become the first non-European man to win any Tours (3-Days Tour, Tour de Ski, World Cup Final, Ski Tour Canada).
• Alexey Poltoranin (KAZ) is aiming for his second top-three finish in one of the Tours (3-Days Tour, Tour de Ski, World Cup Final, Ski Tour Canada). He finished in third place in the 3-Days Tour in 2012/13.