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12th, 12th, 20th, 27th: Kuusamo Wrap Up.

Mon, Nov  27, 2006 - By Pete Vordenberg -

Gallivare, Sweden.

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Gallivare, Sweden... just a few shots while out on a little stroll in the afternoon.

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Andrew Johnson in Kuusamo.  AJ is hammering it out in every race and every hard interval session.  he's training hard, doing everything he can to stay healthy, and is all in... results will come.

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Newell - also training well and doing it right.  2nd in the prelim and 12th on the day.  Not bad though I know he wanted to finish higher.  Progress has been increadible over the past few years and his pro work ethic is paying off.
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Cook qualified 15th and finished 27th on the day.  Cook is also training well and was feeling the effects from the training in this heat. 
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Dave Chamberlain - working on it!

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Kikkan Randall.

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Kikkan's 12th in the sprint was two tenths of a second away from making the next round.  Still this was the first time she's made the rounds in classical.  Excellent work by Kikkan.
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Kris Freeman - 33rd on the day.  I am not unhappy with this result and neither is Kris.  His preparation is going very well and has not slacked off for these races.  Onward!

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Andy Newell, center, and a norwegian sandwich.  This was a tough sprint course - long hard uphill to a gradual uphill finishing straight.  Ouch.
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Men's winner in the 15km.  Eeldar came from behind to win.  With a little more than a km to go he was 1sec behind and ended up 12sec ahead.  Conditions were wet and wet.

Yeah, it's this dark.  I haven't seen the sun since nov 7th.  Seriously. 

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It is tough to be a Swede in a race with 5 Norwegians (see the dude in white in back getting worked over).  Norway still dominating the classical sprint - especially any classical sprint with a lot of striding - like this one. 

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Yorin Koos was very strong in his heat and moved himself from 30th to 20th on the day.  Nice job torin.  The sprinters all took points on the day - nice work Chris Grover!

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Vittoz of France, second place.  Looking a little like bill koch 1984.

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The lead women heading to the finish.

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Virpi (on the left) is skiing amazing classical.  She won the women's 10km race by around 45 seconds.  Her technique is excellent and skis very powerfully.  I hope she is doing it clean this time around.  Marit (on the right) is all power.

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We are off to central europe where the snow is very thin if it exists at all.  We are supposed to have a 5km trail, assuming it doesn't melt today!  The races should be down in Italy and France after a two week break for training.  Our prep plans are aimed to take us into these races in the best shape of the early season, though we still have some good work to do before we really start resting up.

I haven't been able to listen to any of the pod casts but I hope they are entertaining.  They'll be better for mass start races where all the skis are done at once and all the racers are on course with no splits to give or anything of that sort.  So tune in.

Congratulations to the winners in West yellowstone.  Go as fast as you can in every race, train as well as you can everyday, rest well and you will be as good as you can be.

It was seldom clear like it was this night in Gallivare.  Otherwise it has been overcast everyday...

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Thanks for reading... and for supporting your team. (vordenberg images.)

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