Graabak & Hansen take Norwegian summer nationals
Jørgen Graabak and Gyda Westvold Hansen are the best Norwegian Nordic Combined athletes of the summer. They took the victories in a packed national championship weekend in Lillehammer that also had the popular 200 m knockout Supersprint competition downtown on schedule.
Ida Marie Hagen was the best sprinter on the women’s side, beating Thea Minyan Bjørseth in the finals. The third rank went to Hanna Midstundstad. 20-year-old Einar Lurås Oftebro took a sensational victory over serial super sprint winner and veteran Magnus Moan. Jørgen Graabak was the winner of the small final on the men’s side.
In the national championship event, Gyda Westvold Hansen was the best jumper, showing 98 metres on Lillehammer’s HS 98 normal hill. Thea Minyan Bjørseth held the second place in the intermediate rankings with 87 metres and Ida Marie Hagen and Thea Øihaugen shared the third position with 75 metres each.
In the race, the third fastest time was enough to propel Westvold Hansen across the finish line with a one minute and 58 second advantage on runner-up Ida Marie Hagen. The fastest woman on the 5 km roller-ski track was Hanna Midtsundstad, who crossed the finish line only two seconds after Hagen in a time of 18:36.
The men jumped on the HS 140 large hill in Lillehammer and it was Jørgen Graabak who set the best jump. 135.3 metres meant the pole position and a 49-second head start on runner-up young Simen Kvarstad (129.5 m). Leif Torbjørn Næsvold was third with 128 metres.
While Graabak cruised to a victory by 43 seconds with the fifth fastest roller-ski time, Jarl Magnus Riiber had the fastest time and improved from fourth place to the final silver position. Magnus Krog turned a one minute and 56 second time disadvantage and intermediate position 12 into the final third rank, +01:50 behind Graabak.
The winner in the NC B Men category was Jon Fossen Rosenberg, who finished six seconds ahead of Marius Solvik and eight seconds earlier than Marius Nordsveen.