Olympic cross-country skiing champions Katarina Hennig and Viktoria Karl clearly missed out on the podium again at the start of the World Cup in Canmore, Canada. On Friday, Hennig (Oberweisenthal) came 10th in the tough 15km freestyle mass start, while top German Karl (Zella-Millis) came 12th – but both weathered the chaos of the ride. Good.
American Jessie Diggins achieved her fifth victory this season in a “home half match” in North America, thus strengthening her lead in the overall World Cup finals. The candidate in the small town west of Calgary beat Frenchwoman Delphine Claudel by 2.6 seconds, while Norwegian Heidi Wong came in third place (+3.3).
Hennig was 15.0 seconds behind the first big chase group. She ran a brave race, as did Karl (+16.6), who was leading midway through the race. Both Hennig and Karl have been on the podium twice this winter, and Karl celebrated her first World Cup victory in Trondheim in December.
A single start race over 10km was originally scheduled for Friday in Canmore. However, due to the late delivery of timekeeping technology to Canada, the FIS switched to a mass start. The German team's luggage also arrived late, so Hennig and Co. initially had to make do with running as a training programme.
Sprints follow on Saturday in Canmore, followed by mass start races over 20km in classic style on Sunday.
“Tv expert. Hardcore creator. Extreme music fan. Lifelong twitter geek. Certified travel enthusiast. Baconaholic. Pop culture nerd. Reader. Freelance student.”