Stage six of this year's Tour de Ski brought perhaps two of the most exciting competitions we have seen in many years. The ladies' 10 km classic mass start competition won by Sweden's Stina Nilsson saw Tour favourites Heidi Weng and Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg both of Norway struggle on the stage and both slip in the overall standings. With Nilsson's victory she now has a 19.2 second lead of Weng and Oestberg fell to 4th in the overall +1:23.3. On the podium with Nilsson was Finland's Anne Kylloenen in second place +3.0 for her first podium of the season and in third was Charlotte Kalla (SWE) who recovered from an early fall and finished +3.7 behind her teammate. Krista Parmakoski (FIN) also fell in the same turn as Kalla and fought her way back to take 4th place and with that result moved into 3rd in the overall standings +53.9 back from Nilsson.
In the men's competition 2-time Tour de Ski champion Martin Johnsrud Sundby (NOR) stopped Sergey Ustiugov's (RUS) Tour stage win streak at 5 by winning the men's 15 km event. Ustiugov held on for second place +2.2 back but gave up 23 seconds in his overall lead. Sundby now sits 1:11.9 back in second place in the overall standings. The men's race saw team tactics from both Norway and Russia as each protected their top skiers during bonus sprints on course and at other times lifting or slowing the pace. In third place on the day was Finland's Matti Heikkinen +2.8 off the lead and jumped up the overall standings to now sit 4th behind Switzerland's Dario Cologna. Canada's Alex Harvey had his worst day of the Tour finishing 19th +38.7 back and slipped to 6th in the overall behind Heikkinen and France's Maurice Manificat. The battle for 3rd in the overall Tour will perhaps be the most interesting with 4 athletes being separated by just 50 seconds with just the final climb up Alpe Cermis left.
Stina Nilsson (SWE)
It is amazing, you never know how the body bounces back. Yesterday was a difficult day. I am really happy with today’s result.
Anne Kylloenen (FIN)
I had a very good feeling and felt very strong today. I had amazing skis. I am very happy. It was one of my best races I’ve ever had. I felt great in the last lap and I started to believe I can be on the podium.
Charlotte Kalla (SWE)
It is great to be on the podium again, especially after I crashed today. I had to fight my way back in the race but in the end I felt very strong. Stina was amazingly strong. She had a great day.
Martin Johnsrud Sundby (NOR)
Yesterday’s race was really bad and it is good I could win today. I was little bit conservative at the beginning of today’s. I wanted to win some bonus seconds. I had some power left and I am happy about victory.
Sergey Ustiugov (RUS)
My teammates did an amazing job today. The fact I am second is mainly thanks to them. I expected to be in top 20 today.
Matti Heikkinen (FIN)
Val di Fiemme has been a difficult place for me, but not anymore. Today we skied quite fast from the beginning. The first bonus sprint was the toughest moment of the competition but after that skiing ws quite easy. There was some aggressive fighting for the podium and I am happy to win 3rd.
LADIES - 10 km C
1. NILSSON Stina 1993 SWE 30:20.8
2. KYLLOENEN Anne 1987 FIN +3.0
3. KALLA Charlotte 1987 SWE +3.7
4. PARMAKOSKI Krista 1990 FIN +9.4
5. STADLOBER Teresa 1993 AUT +10.1
Complete ladies' results are available HERE.
SUNDBY Martin Johnsrud 1984 NOR 40:40.0
USTIUGOV Sergey 1992 RUS +2.2
HEIKKINEN Matti 1983 FIN +2.8
DE FABIANI Francesco 1993 ITA +3.2
LARKOV Andrey 1989 RUS +3.3
Complete men's results are available HERE.
TOUR DE SKI STANDINGS - After stage 6
1. NILSSON Stina SWE 1:53:45.9
2. WENG Heidi NOR +19.2
3. PARMAKOSKI Krista FIN +53.9
4. OESTBERG Ingvild Flugstad NOR +1:23.3
5. DIGGINS Jessica USA +1:56.5
Complete standings are available HERE.
1. USTIUGOV Sergey RUS 2:54:20.2
2. SUNDBY Martin Johnsrud NOR +1:11.9
3. COLOGNA Dario SUI +2:04.1 3510023
4. HEIKKINEN Matti FIN +2:32.9 3180053
5. MANIFICAT Maurice FRA +2:34.6
Complete standings are available HERE.