The distance season is officially underway.
Kris Freeman - bib 143 of over 150 men racers. There are a lot of Norwegian racers. There are a lot of fast Norwegian racers. Check out the results at www.beitoworldcup.com
Overall Super Tour Winner from last season Lars Flora has earned start rights in last spring's and this fall's World Cup. Here he is in this weekend's Beito 15km.
Freeman and his 30second man on the final climb toward the stadium. Kris followed the race plan as it was laid out - start conservatively and increase the pace with each lap. However, when he put the hammer down there just wasn't much in the tank.
I am satisfied with the effort Kris and Lars gave even though neither were fresh enough for a good result. They both followed their race plan and when it came time to push they both pushed hard and fought to the finish. The only time I am unsatisfied is if a skier looses focus, gives up, starts looking around... Sometimes your skis are not fast, sometimes you don't feel super, "sometimes" happens. But if you put on a number then you are racing and there is one way to race: all out.
We are a week away now from the Distance World Cup opening which is also here in Beitostolen. After skiing the lone 5km loop a lot of hours last week, racing it this weekend and with the few quality workouts this coming week - we'll know it well for the race.
The races went all day. As soon as the courses were open - about dark - the kids were out in force. All week there have been hundreds of kids flying around. One team in particular had a large team. They skied the loop for at least an hour and then played games on skis for another hour or so in the stadium after that.
There are a lot of young skiers, all spending their practice time in motion, learning skills, getting fit, having fun.