The Viessmann FIS World Cup Cross-Country finished, for the second time, with the FIS World Cup Final which this year consisted of four races; a sprint in Stockholm and three races in Falun (both SWE).
|Justyna Kowalczyk (POL)
In both the ladies’ and men’s overall rankings, the winners of the large crystal globes began to unveil on the second last day in the shortened pursuit races with intermediate bonus seconds in which Justyna Kowalczyk (POL) and Dario Cologna (SUI) both delivered excellent performances. Finishing 2nd on the day, Kowalczyk collected crucial bonus seconds and established a comfortable lead for the final stage, a handicap start distance race in free technique.
Meanwhile, Dario Cologna built the basis for a total triumph by taking his first World Cup victory and built a lead of almost one minute thanks to the additional bonus seconds from the intermediate sprints. On Sunday, both World Cup Final ranking leaders could comfortably ski to the finish and secure not only victory in the Final, but in the overall FIS Cross-Country World Cup standings.
With her victory in the World Cup Final, Kowalczyk took the overall World Cup title without ever leading the overall standings all season. In the end she won by a 100 point margin over Petra Majdic (SLO), who finished 12th in the Final.
By contrast, Tour de Ski winner Dario Cologna led the overall rankings for most of the season but then risked losing the title to Petter Northug who launched quite a challenge following the Worlds, but did not quite manage to maintain his late season excellent form until the end. At the same time, Cologna again showed his great overall skiing capabilities which really seem to come to the fore in the multi-stage events such as the Tour de Ski and the World Cup Final.
|Dario Cologna (SUI)
The overall World Cup victories for Kowalczyk and Cologna also made World Cup history since no other skier from either Poland or Switzerland has ever before clinched a Cross-Country World Cup crystal globe.
Overall, 16 nations finished on the podium during the 2008/09 season. Leading the World Cup podiums table this season is Norway with 38 podium finishes. Thanks to Petra Majdic, Slovenia had eight victories and while Finland collected 20 podium places (6-8-6) against Sweden’s 19 (6-7-6). Norway won the overall Nations Cup and the men’s Cup while Finland was best in the ladies’ overall ranking. Viessmann FIS World Cup Cross-Country 2008/2009 champions
Ladies Overall World Cup: Justyna Kowalczyk (POL)
Ladies Distance World Cup: Justyna Kowalczyk (POL)
Ladies Sprint World Cup: Petra Majdic (SLO)
Men’s Overall World Cup: Dario Cologna (SUI)
Men’s Distance World Cup: Pietro Piller Cottrer (ITA)
Men’s Sprint World Cup: Ola Vigen Hattestad (NOR)
Nations’ Cup: Norway