The FIS Cross-Country World Cup presented by Viessmann will kick off in the North of Sweden in Gällivare in just a few days, from 20th to 21st November.
The town with over 18,000 inhabitants is situated about 70km north of the Arctic Circle, right in the middle of Lapland, and organizes the Cross-Country World Cup for the fifth time.
"We already got snow in October, and currently have about 40 cm on the cross-country tracks," stated Kjell Nordmark, Chief of course. "The weather forecast is predicting more snow towards the weekend and we will have cold weather below -5 C. So we are positively looking forward to our World Cup weekend and are pleased to welcome the Cross-Country World Cup family back in Gällivare."
26 nations at the start
A total of 26 nations are expected to take part in the World Cup Opening which features interval start competitions over 10 km (ladies) and 15 km (men) in the free technique on Saturday, 20th November and relay races on Sunday, 21st November.
Among the starters are also the local favorites and last time winners Charlotte Kalla and Marcus Hellner. Kalla grew up close to Gällivare whilst Marcus Hellner moved from the south of Sweden to the town in Lapland to have better training conditions and has lived there already for a while now.
So far none of the Cross-Country stars will miss the World Cup start in Gällivare and we can expect great competitions in a beautiful winter landscape.
More information: http://www.worldcupgellivare.com/
Starting Times (local time):
Saturday, 20th November
Sunday, 21st November
Top three in November 2008
Ladies, Interval start race 10 km free technique
1. Charlotte Kalla (SWE)
2. Marit Bjoergen (NOR)
3. Aino Kaisa Saarinen (FIN)
Men, Interval start race 15 km free technique
1. Markus Hellner (SWE)
2. Pietro Piller Cottrer (ITA)
3. Petter Northug (NOR)
Relay competition - Ladies
1. Norway (Bjoergen, Johaug, Steira, Kristoffersen)
2. Finland (Muranen, Kuitunen, Saarinen, Roponen)
3. Sweden (Hansson, Norgren, Haag, Kalla
Relay competition - Men
1. Norway (Johnsrud-Sundby, Roenning, Hofstad, Northug)
2. Sweden (Rickardsson, Olsson, Andreasson, Hellner)
3. Germany (Filbrich, Angerer, Reichelt, Teichmann)