Sweden's Stina Nilsson records her first ever World Cup win with a stunning stage 3 victory in the FIS Tour de Ski Skiathlon competition in Oberstdorf, Germany. With the Top 10 athletes separated by just 12 seconds it was one closest ladies' mass start competitions we have seen in years. Nilsson put on a big push on the final climb and only the USA's Jessie Diggins was able to respond with her. Norway's Heidi Weng and Maiken Caspersen Falla fought hard to keep it close but in the end it was Diggins just +0.2 behind Nilsson for second place with Weng in there for third +1.5 back. It was another top 10 full of many nations. Norway, Sweden, Finland and the USA were represented twice along with one from Russia and Germany.
Along with her win today Nilsson has moved into the overall lead again for the second time this Tour after winning the stage 1 sprint competition in Val Müstair, Switzerland. She now leads Weng by 4 seconds and Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg by 12.4 seconds to round out the top 3. Finland's Krista Parmakoski continues to sit 4th in the overall and is actually closer to the lead after picking up the most bonus seconds out on course on the second lap of the competition. She is +38.7 back heading into tomorrow's 10 km Pursuit in free technique. With the top 20 ladies separated by just 90 seconds it should be a very exciting pursuit competition.
Stina Nilsson (SWE)
I always liked skiathlon. It was a perfect day for me. My shape was great, everything was perfect. I knew if I wanted to be on the podium I had to be in the front. I felt Diggins pushing very hard. I thought I had more power than Jessie before the finish.
Jessie Diggins (USA)
I tried to stay with the group and to not fall back too much. I had great fast skis. I had more fun in the free technique part but it was great to be in the leading group also after the classic portion.
Heidi Weng (NOR)
Everyone opened slower today. It was good for me. I wanted to go fast in the second classic lap before the bonus sprint. I felt little bit stiff afterwards and skied slower before the ski exchange. I am happy for 3rd.
LADIES - 10 km Skiathlon
1. NILSSON Stina 1993 SWE 27:23.8
2. DIGGINS Jessica 1991 USA +0.2
3. WENG Heidi 1991 NOR +1.5
4. FALLA Maiken Caspersen 1990 NOR +3.3
5. BJORNSEN Sadie 1989 USA +8.1
Complete results are available HERE.
TOUR DE SKI STANDINGS - After Stage 3
1. NILSSON Stina SWE 43:01.3
2. WENG Heidi NOR +4.0
3. OESTBERG Ingvild Flugstad NOR +12.4
4. PARMAKOSKI Krista FIN +38.7
5. DIGGINS Jessica USA +51.4
Complete Tour standings are available .