The third edition of the Viessmann FIS Tour de Ski performance by Craft Sportswear will kick off in just 3 days now, on 27th December. 9 days, 7 races, 4 venues in three countries - that will be the Tour de Ski 2008/2009.
The start will be in Oberhof (GER) on 27th and 28th December with the prologue in the free technique and a handicap start race (that means that the athletes start with the time difference from the first Stage) over 10 km (women) and 15 km (men) in classical technique.
The first sprint will be take place in Prague (CZE) on 29th December. This will be the second Cross-Country World Cup competition in the capital of the Czech Republic, but this time the competition place will be at Výstaviště Praha - Holešovice which is the most famous exhibition grounds in Central Europe.
After the first three events, the Tour family will have a rest day before the competition series will continue in Nove Mesto na Morave (CZE). On the schedule there are an individual start race over 10 km (women) and 15 km (men) in classical technique on 31st December, and a Sprint competition in free technique on New Year's Day.
After the second rest day, the Tour will conclude in the valley of ‘Fiemme', the host of the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships in 2003 and 2013. On 3rd January 2009, the athletes will compete in a mass start race over 10 km (ladies) and 20 km (men) in classical technique.
The last competition on 4th January, the already famous ‘Final Climb,' will start in the Cross-Country Stadium Lago di Tesero and end on Alpe Cermis, with the last climb stretching over 3.7 km with an altitude climb of 425m. The ladies will race 9 km and the men 10 km in free technique.
The snow conditions in Oberhof are still excellent; although it was raining in the last days. The preparations are done and the Tour can come to Oberhof for the first time! The venue in Prague will be covered by artificial snow produced on-site in Prague. In Nove Mesto, they have produced artificial snow and expect a cold weather period in the next days that will allow more snow to be produced - therefore everything will stay according to the schedule. Val di Fiemme already gave the green light - a lot of natural snow fell in the last weeks. The third edition of the Viessmann FIS Tour de Ski performance by Craft Sportswear can start - We are ready - come and join us at the Tour 2008/2009!
More information: www.tour-de-ski.com
Starting times & program: click here
Tour de Ski rankings 2007/2008:
Overall Results ladies
1. Charlotte Kalla, SWE
2. Virpi Kuitunen, FIN + 36,4 seconds
3. Arianna Follis, ITA + 53,3 seconds
Overall Results men
1. Lukas Bauer, CZE
22. René Sommerfeldt, GER + 2:47,3 minutes
3. Giorgio Di Centa, ITA + 2:47,6,2 minutes
Sprint Ranking ladies
11. Virpi Kuitunen, FIN 2:36
2. Arianna Follis, ITA 1:49
3. Pirjo Muranen, FIN 1:46
Sprint ranking men
1. Petter Northug, NOR 1:44
2. Tor Arne Hetland, NOR 1:44
3. Giorgio Di Centa, ITA 1:36
Tour team standing
2. Russia + 4:21,2 minutes
33. Italy + 6:07,0 minutes