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Wisconsin-Native Cook Captures Gold in the Main Event

Capitol Square Sprints - Day 1

Mon, Jan  16, 2006 - By Yuriy Gusev, Chief of Competition

MADISON, Wis. — Saturday marked the start of the second annual Capitol Square Sprints, a two-day cross country ski event that has brought several of the world’s top skiers to Madison to race around the Wisconsin Capitol on a 1-kilometer manmade course.

The first of the weekend’s two premier events took place Saturday night—the FIS SuperTour two-person team sprint skate relay. In the women’s team event, the international duo of Karin Camenisch (Switzerland) and Natalja Naryshkina (Russia) cruised to a relatively easy victory over the 8-kilometer course in the time of 18:27.1. The all-American team of Caitlin Compton (St. Paul, Minn.) and Anna McLoon (Roseville, Minn.) stayed within several seconds of the leaders until the final exchange when 2005 SuperTour overall sprint champion Camenisch opened up a 3-second gap. “We were always in total control of the race,” said Camenisch. “Natalja set a great early pace and we rode it out.”

On the men’s side, Wisconsin-native and future Olympian Chris Cook (Rhinelander, Wis.) paired with Zach Simons (Midway, Utah) in a dominating performance over the 10-kilometer course. Simons, who won the individual event at last year’s Capitol Square Sprints, and Cook led wire-to-wire, ultimately winning by close to 20 seconds. “We got in front early, built the gap, and pushed it out,” said Cook, a graduate of Northern Michigan University. The true competition came for second place. The pair of Brayton Osgood (Putney, Vt.) and Colin Rogers (Putney, Vt.) battled with Canadians Gordon Jewett (Canmore, Alberta) and Jeff Ellis Collingwood, Ontario) for much of the race. Ultimately, Rogers’ come-from-behind surge in the final 100 yards netted his team the silver medal.

Weather: 31° F, mostly cloudy

Snow Conditions: Fully transformed, machined old snow, dirty snow

2006 Capitol Square Sprints

Madison, WI – Jan. 14, 2006

Women’s SuperTour Team Sprint Skate Relay Championship (8K)

1. Camenisch/Naryshkina, 18:27.1

2. Compton/McLoon, 18:30.6

3. Whitcomb/Hood, 19:25.7

4. Wesolek/Hueberli, 20:37.6

5. Stuber/Cook, 20:38.4

6. Coogan/Olson, 21:08.2

7. Sereno/Grist, 23:59.4

Men’s SuperTour Team Sprint Skate Relay Championship (10K)

1. Cook/Simons, 20:44.8

2. Osgood/Rogers, 21:03.0

3. Jewett/Ellis, 21:03.6

4. Hochtl/Haugen, 21:08.5

5. Watt/Swank, 21:29.1

6. Laurin/Regard, 21:46.5

7. Hunter/Quinn-Hurst, 22:15.9

8. Fick/Mommsen, 22:27.9

9. Mahood/Jacobson, 23:08.8

10. Ostroot/Geppert, 23:35.8

11. Schacherl/Wesolek, 25:12.3

Quotations From Top SuperTour Athletes

Karin Camenisch: “Our strategy was to go easy for two laps and then pick it up for the last two laps. Natalja took control early and then we tried to stay in control. We were always in total control of the race.”

Chris Cook: “The game plan was to play it by ear. We wanted to get a good start, get away early, and try to stay away. As it turned out, we got in front early, built the gap, and pushed it out. From there, we just wanted to sustain the lead.”

Other Day One Results

Wisconsin Boys High School Sprint Relay Championship

1. Hayward, 6:43.71

2. Lakeland, 6:48.08

3. Waukesha West, 6:58.04

4. Wausau Nordic, 7:09.69

Wisconsin Girls High School Sprint Relay Championship

1. Lakeland, 8:01.28

2. Hayward, 8:09.95

3. Waukesha West, 8:12.84

4. Wausau West, 8:14.19

For complete results: www.itiming.com

In addition to the FIS SuperTour team event, Saturday at the Capitol Square Sprints included the Wisconsin High School Relay Championships, a winter/outdoor sports expo, ice sculptures, a cross country ski conference, a community open ski with equipment rentals, Special Olympics Wisconsin, the Fit City Kids Expo, a rail jam competition for snowboarders, citizen criterium races, and award ceremonies.

Sunday’s Events

Sunday’s activities begin with open skiing at 7 a.m., followed by the most anticipated event of the weekend, the FIS SuperTour individual classic sprints. Qualifying will begin at 9 a.m. and the semifinal heats will go off every three minutes beginning at 10:50 a.m. The women’s and men’s finals will start at 11:14 a.m. and conclude at 11:38 a.m., to be immediately followed by the awards presentation. Other races scheduled for Sunday include qualifying events for the Junior Olympics and citizen criterium events.