Toblach 10/15 km F Preview

PREVIEW Ladies' 10KM FREESTYLE – Saturday 16 Dec 2017

•Ingvild Flugstad Østberg (NOR) won the 10km free in Davos last week to claim her first World Cup victory of the season.
•Østberg and Maiken Caspersen Falla (NOR), who won the sprint classic in Lillehammer on 2 December, are the only athletes to have won a World Cup event (individual, relay/team, Tour stages, overall Tour) in each of the last six seasons (incl. 2017/18).
•The four distance World Cup events this season have seen four different winners: Østberg, Charlotta Kalla (SWE), Ragnhild Haga (NOR) and Marit Bjørgen (NOR).
•Østberg could claim consecutive individual distance victories for the first time in her career.
•Since the start of the 2010/11 World Cup season, 15 of the 16 10km freestyle events have been won by Norwegian women. In this run, only Sweden's Charlotte Kalla (SWE) avoided Norwegian success as she won in Östersund on 15 February 2015.
•Last week in Davos, Kalla failed to reach the podium in a distance event for the first time this season when she finished in eighth place in the 10km free.
•Kalla is looking for her second World Cup victory in Italy, after 4 January 2008, when she won the sprint free in Asiago (Tour de Ski).
•Haga is the only woman to have claimed a podium spot in each of the last three distance World Cup events.
•With four top-three finishes this season (incl. Tour stages and Tour overall), Haga has claimed just as many podium spots this term than in all her previous seven campaigns combined.
•Krista Pärmäkoski (FIN), who finished in third place in the 10km free in Davos last week, is aiming to claim her first World Cup victory since 4 December 2016, when she won the 10km pursuit in Lillehammer (3-Days Tour).
•Pärmäkoski could become the third athlete from Finland to win a 10km free World Cup race after Virpi Kuitunen (FIN) in 2007 and Jaana Savolainen (FIN) in 1986.
•Heidi Weng (NOR) has finished in the top-four in each of her last nine distance World Cup appearances, since a sixth-place finish in the 10km free in Ulricehamn on 21 January.
•Weng has recorded 15 podium finishes in distance events since the start of last World Cup season, at least five more than any other woman. Bjørgen is on 10 top-three finishes in this span.
•Weng claimed her first individual World Cup win in Italy, as she won the 10km classic in Val di Fiemme on 9 January 2016 (Tour de Ski).
•The last time Norway swept the podium in a 10km free World Cup race was in La Clusaz on 17 December 2016, when Weng, Bjørgen and Østberg finished in first, second and third place respectively.
•Bjørgen finished in ninth place in the 10km free in Davos last week, her worst World Cup result in an individual distance race since a 11th-place finish in the 10km pursuit in Falun on 24 March 2013 (World Cup Final).
•Bjørgen has failed to reach the podium in each of her last three distance World Cup appearances and could fail to claim a podium spot in four in a row for the first time since January-March 2009 (6 in a row).
•The last time Bjørgen failed to record a top-three finish in consecutive 10km free World Cup appearances was in January-February 2008.
•Bjørgen, who is on a record nine 10km free World Cup race victories, has yet to claim a podium spot in this World Cup event in Italy. Bjørgen's last World Cup win in Italy came on 8 January 2015, when she triumphed in the 15km free in Toblach (Tour de Ski).
•Teresa Stadlober (AUT), who finished in fifth place in the 10km free in Davos, is aiming to become the second woman from Austria to reach the podium in any World Cup event, after Maria Theurl (AUT) recorded a third-place finish in the 15km free in Ramsau am Dachstein (World Championships) on 19 February 1999.

PREVIEW Men's 15KM FREESTYLE – Saturday 16 Dec 2017

•Maurice Manificat (FRA) won the 15km freestyle event in Davos last week to claim his ninth distance World Cup race win (incl. Tour stages).
•Manificat's tally of nine distance World Cup victories is a joint-high for athletes from France along with Vincent Vittoz (FRA).
•The last time France claimed back-to-back distance World Cup wins was in March 2008, when Vittoz won the 20km classic and the 15km pursuit in Bormio (World Cup Final).
•Only Sergey Ustiugov (RUS, 4) has won more distance World Cup events in 2017 than Manificat (3).
•Ustiugov finished in second place in the 15km freestyle in Davos last week. Ustiugov is now on 31 World Cup podium finishes (individual, relay/team, Tour stages, overall Tour).
•Johannes Høsflot Klæbo (NOR) has won six of the eight World Cup events this season (incl. Tour stages and overall Tour wins) and could become the first ever athlete to claim (at least) seven victories before the turn of the year.
•Petter Northug (NOR) in 2011/12 and Martin Johnsrud Sundby (NOR) in 2015/16 also recorded six World Cup wins before New Year's Day, which included also one relay victory for both.
•Klæbo, who did not compete in the 15km freestyle in Davos, has won three distance events since the start of last World Cup season. Only Sundby (4) and Ustiugov (4) has won more in this span. Manificat is also on three distance victories since the start of 2016/17.
•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 athlete 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 is now on 42 World Cup wins (individual, relay/team, Tour stages, overall Tour), only trailing Dæhlie (46) and Northug (47).
•Dario Cologna (SUI) is aiming for his first World Cup podium spot in a distance event since 3 January 2017, when he finished in third place in the 2 x 10km classic in Oberstdorf (Tour de Ski).
•Cologna's last World Cup win came on 23 January 2015, when he triumphed in the 15km free in Rybinsk.
•Only Northug (3) has won more World Cup events in Toblach than Cologna (2).

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