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Daehlie to ski opening FIS Marathon Cup race

Fri, Oct  3, 2008 - By Livigno La Sgambeda

It is official: Bjorn Daehlie, the Norwegian cross-country skiing legend of the 90es who won 12 Olympic medals, 8 of them gold, will participate at Sgambeda 2008. The 19th edition of the traditional opening race for the FIS Marathon Cup will gather in Livigno more than one thousand of affectionate cross-country skiers. Despite his decision to abandon the race circuit in 1999, at only 32 years of age, Bjorn Daehlie has always remained extremely closed to the Nordic skiing world, including the races. He is proud of ending up as participant almost always "on page 1 of the placement list" as he likes to emphasize, adding that "it's important for me to stay close to the Nordic skiing world, which gave me the opportunity to be what I am".

The list of his awards is simply gigantic: 8 Olympic gold, 9 placements, and winner 6 times of the World Cup, with 47 gold medals in World Cup competitions. Nobody is simply as good, as him. "We are extremely happy to welcome him again to Livigno" as Cinzia Confortola, Livigno Tourist Board Director, confirms, "although Daehlie knows Livigno extremely well, having spent several training weeks here, with the Norwegian cross-country National Team".

Opening race of the FIS Marathon Cup

Alta Valtellina and Livigno play an important role among the top cross-country skiing locations, thanks to La Sgambeda, the opening race of the FIS Marathon Cup. Many important athletes, such as Elverum, Jerry Ahrlin (who won twice in a row, in 2006 and 2007), Anders Aukland and many others will compete again here, on a 42 km distance. Ten races in total are scheduled for the FIS Marathon Cup: they are organized in cooperation with the Worldloppet Ski Federation, www.worldloppet.com .

Not only champions

Cross country skiing in Livigno is meant to be not only for the current champions, but also for those, who will become champions soon. Minisgambeda will take place on Saturday for children and youngsters (below age 18), divided into different categories, and on different distances according to their age.

Registration

The original 21 km course, a half-marathon distance, is confirmed: it will be completed twice, for the marathon distance, in skating technique, or once, with a special ranking. First registration deadline is 31st October 2008 (40 Euro). It will be possible to register until 9th December (55 Euro). Online registration and information are available in the homepage: www.lasgambeda.com