After 10 days and 8 Stages, the 2007/08 Viessmann FIS Tour de Ski performance by Craft Sportswear is over. On the ladies' side, Charlotte Kalla (SWE) stormed to win the 2nd edition of the Tour in spectacular fashion on the last Stage. In the men's event, Lukas Bauer (CZE) was never in doubt on his way to cross the line first on Alpe Cermis, Val di Fiemme (ITA).
The 20-year-old talent Kalla caught Virpi Kuitunen (FIN) a third of the way up the Final Climb and made a decisive break with one kilometer to go. Arianna Follis (ITA) took third place, just ahead of Valentina Shevchenko (UKR) who skied the fastest ladies? time of the day to move up from 10th place to 4th. Kalla and Kuitunen had duelled for the leader?s golden jersey for most of the Tour, with Kuitunen wearing it for five days although Kalla recorded a total of three Stage wins. Thanks to winning 2:49 minutes in time bonuses, Kuitunen took the ladies' Tour Sprint ranking. All in all, Kalla earned CHF 168,000 and whopping 642 World Cup points on the Tour. She now leads the FIS World Cup standings with 795 points.
In the men's competition, the 30-year-old Czech Bauer collected the king's crown after extending his lead over second place by nearly another minute during last Stage. Rene Sommerfeldt (GER) took second place in a dramatic sprint with Georgio Di Centa, posting the fastest time of the day to take the Italian right on the finish line. Altogether Bauer won five out of eight Stages of the Tour, conceding only the two sprint Stages and the mass start Stage 7 in which he scored the most bonus seconds. He netted a total of CHF 163,000 and 586 World Cup points from the Tour. In the men's Tour Sprint Ranking, the victory and 10,000 CHF in prize money went to Norway's Petter Northug who collected the most bonus seconds. Lukas Bauer now leads the FIS World Cup overall with 816 points over Tor Arne Hetland of Norway in 2nd with 515 points and Sommerfeldt in 3rd.
In the Tour Team Standing, the trophy went to Team Norway which ended up beating Team Russia by 4.21 minutes in the course of the eight Stages. Each day, the best two ladies and men on each team scored for the Team Standing.
After the 2nd edition of the series, Vegard Ulvang, Chairman of the FIS Cross-Country Committee commented: "One of the main goals for the Tour de Ski was to increase interest in Cross-Country Skiing. And that we have achieved! In terms of the number of TV viewers and number of media on site, the Tour is a different story. This was the 2nd Tour and we can already say that it has found its place on the calendar. This time around, we were again able to create a good story that developed Stage after Stage."
The Viessmann FIS World Cup Cross-Country will continue with four World Cup events in Canmore (CAN) beginning on 22nd January.