Kikkan Randall and Ida Sargent finished up strong Sunday in the 15k skiathlon after two weekends of the FIS Cross Country World Cup in Canmore. Randall clinched the eighth spot to remain in the second position in the World Cup overall standings. Sargent finished with a career best distance finish of 14th. However, they weren’t able to catch up to the winner of the race and World Cup leader Justyna Kowalcyk of Poland.
Randall commented, “It’s a little hard. All of the distance races I feel like I’ve been in the fight so it’s just a little tough. I just kind of refocused and told myself that this was a good hard workout to get ready for the Tour [de Ski]. So I think it’s good to just refocus like that.”
Sargent used her power as a classic skier Sunday as she stated, “Today I just tried to be patient and try to move up when I could and not freak out because I knew it was going to be a long race. Starting the second classic leg I started to feel really good and I tried to move up and took advantage because I'm a lot stronger classic skier over skate, and I didn't know what would happen in the skate part.”
She continued with, “My classic leg was good but I tried to still stay a little bit controlled. Then in the skate portion I just tried to stay relaxed and ski with people. Then we kind of had that pack form. I had a lot of practice yesterday with the finishing stretch so I knew I just had to stay relaxed and take the draft and I knew my finish would be good. I had amazing skis out there – both classic and skate. The techs did a great job.”
After the holiday break, The World Cup continues with the grueling Tour de Ski December 29 starting in Oberhof, Germany. The tour will have seven days of racing over nine days featuring five different venues in three nations.