Update Wed Mar 9: You can watch today’s skiathlon live on the internet starting at 10 a.m.
Petter Northug is reputedly the most famous person in Norway, at least according to the Norwegian journalist I heard being interviewed on CBC’s Eyeopener this morning. He’s also known as a “bad boy” as is exemplified in this story from Dec 2014 Northug gets 50 days in prison for drunk driving.
The CBC did another story today Petter Northug finds anonymity at world cup race in Canmore.
There’s no denying that he’s one of the best cross-country skiers in the world. He sits in second place in the Ski Tour Canada standings, and today, at the Canmore Nordic Centre, he made it into the final of the classic sprints.
About 10 seconds into the race, myself and all the spectators were puzzled by his behavior. He slowed down considerably as the other five competitors climbed the steep hill and left him behind. We were wondering if he had hurt himself or had severe muscle cramps or something, or was employing some unique race strategy.
It turns out he simply decided not to exert himself because he was saving himself for tomorrow’s skiathlon. His final time in the sprint was over 6 minutes, while the winner finished in 3:46. If anyone understands Norwegian, perhaps you could let us know what he’s saying in this Youtube interview which was done after the race.
Update Mar 9: It is now being reported that the three Norwegians who finished 4th, 5th, and 6th had some ulterior motives 3 Norwegian skiers are disrepectful and should be kicked out
Three Canadian skiers qualified for the heats and one made it to the semi-finals. To read about today’s races with an emphasis on the Canadian skiers Cross Country Canada race report
Bob, thanks for the info and links. The Calgary Herald coverage is pretty weak.
Bob, first off, a tip of my hat to you for providing the link to the online CBC coverage. I spent a great 90 minutes at work watching!
It’s great that you got to watch it live and up close.
The online announcers were also puzzled by Northug’s actions. However, it was his right to do so. We’ve all seen in other sporting events, and even in recent Olympics (table tennis or badminton?) where athletes threw games for various strategic reasons. It certainly sucks for the spectators.