Race development: 10 km classic WC opening

Posted by Jan Kocbach, 19 Nov 2011@12:43

Marit Bjørgen did it for the third time in a row – winning the World Cup season opening. Above you see the race development in a SplitsBrowser.

The SplitsBrowser (see above) compares the race development of different skiers in a graphical way. A flat curve means that a skier is fastest on a split – when a curve goes down on a split, the skier looses time.

Too fast too early by Skofterud?

Bjørgen was fastest at all splits except for the last part of the second loop where Skofterud was faster. Skofterud seems to have burned a bit too much fuel here – loosing time afterwards. This is probably what cost her the second spot – which Charlotte Kalla took in the end after a tight fight on the last loop.

- I tried to ski technically well, and feel that I managed to do that. This was a course which fit me very well, Marit Bjørgen said after her victory race.

Along with Bjørgen there were 6 other Norwegians among the top 10. A big success for Norway – not that good for international cross country skiing.

- I knew that we had a very good team, and that our team had done a good job together.

Splits analysis

Interactive SplitsBrowser:

Big surprise of the day: Skofterud

Looking at the whopping 234 predictions in the WhoWins XC-predictions for this season opener, you can see that Vibeke Skofterud’s third spot is the big surprise of the day with her 3rd spot – only predicted as number 14. And of course Biathlon athlete Tora Berger who skied her first Cross Country World Cup race ever today – finishing 4th and only being tipped in Top 5 by two people. Other positive surprises are Marthe Kristoffersen and Kikkan Randall.

On the other end of the scale, Justyna Kowalczyk was the big disappointment with her 10th spot. However, she has never been good in the season opener – finishing only 7th last year. Other disappointments were Therese Johaug finishing 7th, Aino-Kaisa Saarinen finishing 27th and Anna Haag finishing 15th.



Comment by Ola

November 19, 2011 @ 13:55

Justine is the best!!! Justine just finished training and is still tired, and Marit before training ended, and her body could rest. I wonder if Marit maintain this form for the rest of the season. About Justine I am calm, but a little afraid Marit. But Justine and Marit fan of the same.


Comment by Jan Kocbach

November 19, 2011 @ 14:07

@Ola: Nothing unusual by Justyna there, no. I am sure she will be up fighting with Bjørgen very soon – maybe already next weekend. Also, the course at Sjusjøen was probably not perfect for Justyna with quite icy tracks and a lot of curves.

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