OTEPAAE, Estonia (Jan. 25) - Norway's Ola Vigen Hattestad and Petra Majdic of Slovenia won classic World Cup sprint races Sunday to maintain overall leads in the season's sprint standings. Andy Newell (Shaftsbury, VT) and Torin Koos (Leavenworth, WA) easily qualified for the finals, but did not make it past the quarterfinal heats. Koos finished 20th, while Newell came in 24th. Kikkan Randall (Anchorage) was also eliminated in the quarterfinal to finish 16th.
Both Hattestad and Majdic have won four World Cup sprints so far this season. Men's overall leader, Dario Cologna of Italy did not qualify for the finals.
"We had good skis, we had good qualifying, but where we're at right now, we're not strong enough to podium on this kind of course," Cross Country Head Coach Peter Vordenberg said.
The course in Estonia he said was similar to Vancouver, with a long, hard finish.
"It's really important for us to fix where we're at. We've got our work cut out for us," Vordenberg said. "We're right in there until the last 30 seconds of the race."
This weekend the Team travels to Rybinsk, Russia where Vordenberg is more optimistic.
"The finish is shorter and faster and we've had two podiums there in the past. We're going in with high hopes," Vordenberg said.
2009 VIESSMANN CROSS COUNTRY FIS WORLD CUP
Otepaae, Estonia - Jan. 25, 2009
1. Ola Vigen Hattestad, Norway
2. Oystein Pettersen, Norway
3. Boerre Naess, Norway
4. Tor Arne Hetland, Norway
5. Eldar Roenning, Norway
20. Torin Koos, Leavenworth, WA
24. Andy Newell, Shaftsbury, VT
1. Petra Majdic, Slovenia
2. Aino Kaisa Saarinen, Finland
3. Virpi Kuitunen, Finland
4. Pirjo Muranen, Finland
5. Alena Prochazkova, Slovakia
16. Kikkan Randall, Anchorage
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For complete results click here.