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Jacobsen and Hetland win in Rybinsk

World Cup

Sat, Dec  15, 2007 - By FIS

The winners of the World Cup race in Rybinsk over 15 km (women) and 30 km (men) in free technique are the youngster Astrid Jacobsen and Tor Arne Hetland (both NOR).

The 20-year-old Astrid Jacobsen from Norway claim victory in a very tight race just 0,7 seconds ahead of the home favorite Natalia Korosteleva (RUS). Riitta-Liisa Roponen from Finland took the third place 1,1 seconds behind the winner.

The race was very tight and two kilometers before the finish 15 women were in the leading group. After the second last downhill Astrid Jacobsen made her final attack and went in front.

The World Champion from Sapporo, Astrid Jacobsen won her first World Cup victory in her career. Korosteleva finished for the first time on a podium place in the World Cup victory.

The overall World Cup is still led by Marit Bjoergen with 312 points followed by her team mates Astrid Jacobsen (300 points) and Vibeke Skofterud (234 points), who finished in the today's race on 12th place. The distance World Cup is led by three Norwegians: Vibeke Skofterud (232 points), Astrid Jacobsen (220 points) and Marit Bjoergen (200 points), who was not competing in the today's race.

In the exciting and tight men's race, the ski veteran Tor Arne Hetland (NOR) showed again this strength in the finish sprint. He won 0,5 seconds ahead of Ville Nousianen from Finland. The 32-year-old Pietro Piller Cottrer (ITA) finished third, 1,3 seconds behind the winner.

21 athletes were before the last uphill still together in the 30 km mass start race. Ville Nousianen tries to take his chance and attacked on the last uphill. He went first into the downhill before the finish but on the finish straight Tor Arne Hetland was stronger and claim victory.

For Hetland, it was the 11th World Cup victory in his career. Ville Nousianen finished for the first time ever on the podium, after already being 6th in Kuusamo, two weeks ago.

Axel Teichmann, who is not competing this weekend in Russia, is still in the lead of the overall World Cup with 260 points. On second place is Lukas Bauer (230 points) and on third place is now the winner of the today's race, Tor Arne Hetland (184 points). This top three are also the top three in the distance World Cup ranking.

The first trial of the pit stop in a mass start race where the racer could change the ski in the stadium was a success. Some of the top athlete like Vincent Vittoz (FRA) and Giorgio Di Centa (ITA) tried it and changed the ski's. The men started already after the first round with the change of ski's while in the women's competition nobody did it.

The next competitions will be in Rybinsk on Sunday, 16th of December 2007 – Sprint competitions women and men.