Tour de Ski XC-Predictions: Join the 200 others now!

Posted by Jan Kocbach, 27 Dec 2011@3:29

Tour de Ski is the big highlight of the 2011/2012 season – and therefore the races everybody has prepared for this winter. This will make Tour de Ski 2011/2012 a different race than the last three seasons where the season highlight for many has been World Championships or Olympic Games.

The XC-Predictions were a big hit at the previous Tour de Ski edition – this year we have got Skidpepp in on the predictions as well, and expect more than 200 setting up their predictions for Tour de Ski stages. New this year: The overall Tour de Ski predictions are to be set up ahead of the first stage!

Set up your predictions

Set up your predictions here – or read the preview article below first:

Race previews – Tour de Ski overall

Is this what it takes to get a Norwegian overall Tour de Ski victory – after many attempts? Or will Cologna, Bauer, Kowalczyk or some of the dark horses take home the biggest title of the year within Cross Country skiing?

One thing is certain: With one extra race added in Toblach – and a better start field than ever – Tour de Ski will be as tough as ever! This year predictions for the overall Tour de Ski are to be set up ahead of the Prologue – so it is time to take a look at the overall favourites:


  • Marit Bjørgen: She has won everything in the World Cup this year, and is the big favourite. Two very small question marks after her name, though. The biggest of those is that she seems to have a slight problem with many races in a row – a problem which Kowalczyk has not shown. The other smaller one is her small illness the Rogla weekend – but she is supposed to have recovered very fast from that.
  • Justyna Kowalczyk: Always slow to get in shape at the start of the season – but this season even slower than usually. However, in Rogla the last weekend before Christmas she showed with her first World Cup victory of the season that the shape will be there for Tour de Ski this year again. Bjørgen was not at the start line in Rogla, but Kowalczyk’s race was still very impressive.
  • Therese Johaug: Sprint is her weak point – the last uphill her strong point. Johaug has improved on the sprint this year (8th in Kuusamo) – and may get some bonus points from the sprint races in Tour de Ski this year. Can it be enough for an overall Tour de Ski victory and improve her second place from last year? Only if some of the other skiers race below par in some of the races – but that may very well happen during 9 tough stages…
  • Vibeke Skofterud: Has been top 3 in both sprint races and distance races this season, and may look like one of the biggest challenges to Bjørgen on paper. However, Skofterud’s shape has often been poorer after Christmas – and she is not as strong in the last hill as Johaug. Skofterud is also one of the women who may go all the way to the top if everything fits.
  • Charlotte Kalla: The big Swedish hope – who was close to Bjørgen the first races this season. Kalla has however had problems with sickness, and was not even sure she would start Tour de Ski when this was written. Her shape has gotten worse and worse since the strong opening – but the Tour is long, and if Kalla comes to the start, she may well fight for victory.
  • Outsiders: Kikkan Randall, Aino Kaisa Saarinen and Kristin Størmer Steira are outsiders – but a lot must happen in the top if one of these women will top the Tour de Ski results list this year…


  • Petter Northug: Northug is the biggest favourite in this edition of Tour de Ski – after three 2nd places the last editions. Northug has improved in the individual start races, and seems stronger than ever. He will probably need a lead ahead of the last race up the hill, but with a lot of man-against-man fights giving bonus seconds the scene should be set for that. Northug must perform well in the sprints though – mistakes in the sprints is what has cost Northug a victory in the previous editions…
  • Dario Cologna: Cologna is the second big favourite in this Tour edition. He is fast both in sprint and in distance races – and just as good in skating as in classic. His biggest chance to beat Northug is to do well in the sprint races, and to perform consistently well in all races. If he starts along with Northug on the last stage, Cologna is the favorite. Cologna has two Tour de Ski victories, after all – and showed great shape in Rogla with one 1st and one 2nd place!
  • Lukas Bauer: Bauer also has two Tour de Ski victories, but he has two problems which can make it difficult to repeat it this year with Northug and Cologna both seeming very strong: His weakness in sprint and in man-to-man fights. Bauer’s way to victory goes through a good race on Stage 7 from Cortina to Toblach: Here Bauer can fight his way all the way up to the top and gain the time he has lost in the sprints if everything goes his way – and then even an overall Tour victory is possible…
  • Alexander Legkov: Legkov is very strong in the distance races, but varies in the sprints. Not as much as Bauer, though – and as for Bauer, if Legkov is there when the skiers arive to Toblach on Stage 7, everything can happen. Legkov is one of the strongest skiers in the last uphill…
  • Maxim Vylegzhanin: The dark horse who can actually take the overall victory if everything goes his way. Has not showed stabil results over many races previously – that might be his problem this year as well.
  • Outsiders: Roland Clara – very impressive performance at the start of the season. Maurice Manificat: Also a very good start of the season, but has not got the even performance in both sprint and distance races which is usually necessary. Markus Hellner – among the outsiders based on what he did last year in the first part of the Tour – but the results this year have not been on top. The Canadians Harvey and Kershav are also among the outsiders – can do well in both sprint and distance races.
Prologue Preview

This prologue marks the start of the 6th edition of the Tour de Ski – 9 competitions in 11 days in two countries. The prologue is approximately the double length of a regular sprint – 2.5 km for the women and 3.75 km for the men.

  • The women start from 14:15 CET – the men start from 15:15 CET
  • In the 2010/2011 prologue, Marcus Hellner won ahead of a surprisingly strong Petukhov, Northug, Legkov, Frasnelli, Duvillard, and Cologna among the men – with Lukas Bauer in 9th. Kowalczyk won ahead of Kalla, Jacobsen, Roponen, Tchekaleva, Saarinen and Herrmann among the women (Bjørgen was not on the start line).
  • In the 2009/2010 prologue, Petter Northug won ahead of Marcus Hellner, Axel Teichmann, Dario Cologna and Sergey Shiriaev among the men. Petra Majdic won ahead of Natalia Korosteleva, Justyna Kowalczyk, Arianna Follis and Miriam Gössner among the women.
  • In the 2008/2009 prologue, Axel Teichmann won ahead of Dario Cologna, Petter Northug, Aivar Rehemaa and Devon Kershaw among the men. In the womens class Claudia Nystad won ahead of Arianna Follis, Petra Majdic, Justyna Kowalczyk and Marit Bjørgen.
  • Race profile Men:
  • Race profile Women:

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