• Alex 50km Lahti Champion
    • Haywood RACE Report: Alex Harvey 20th in Tour de Ski stage 2

      December 31, 2017

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      Day 2 of the Tour de Ski began with much different conditions for today's classic, interval-start race, compared to the previous day's sprint. The skies were clear, and the temperatures were several degrees above zero, making waxing a challenge on the fresh snow, which had shaded and sunny sections on the course.

      Canada's Tour team was reduced to one, as Devon Kershaw withdrew, after becoming ill the night before the first race.

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      Alex was in a good position in the overall Tour standings, standing 7th at the start of the race, just over 30 seconds behind last year's winner, Sergey Ustiugov. Many of the other Tour favourites were another 30 seconds farther back.

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      Alex sporting the new Auclair "Canada gloves" at the start

      Alex started strong, and was in the top 4 after 2.5k.  Unfortunately, he couldn't maintain the pace on what was a challenging course with quite variable snow conditions, finishing 20th on the day.

      According to coach Ivan Babikov, the individual 15k classic race is one that Alex has some trouble with. While it wasn't the greatest result, he still is confident, feeling good and in a decent position to challenge for a Tour podium position.

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      31.12.2017, Lenzerheide, Switzerland (SUI): Alex Harvey (CAN), Ari Luusua (FIN), (l-r) - FIS world cup cross-country, tour de ski, 15km men, Lenzerheide (SUI). www.nordicfocus.com. © Modica/NordicFocus.

      Alexander Bolshunov of Russia was the early race leader, before the veteran Swiss skier Dario Cologna increased his pace, to win by .6 seconds over Kazakhstan's Alexey Poltoranin. Martin Sundby of Norway grabbed 3rd, 14 seconds back. The Tour leader, Sergey Ustiugov faltered a bit, finishing 10th over 30 seconds off the lead.

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      Men's results

      Alex is ranked 9th on the Tour standings after the 2nd stage, 53 seconds behind Ustiugov and on the overall World Cup standings he is now ranked 6th.

      Monday's race is a 15 k skate pursuit. So, Alex will be looking to work with a couple of skiers close to him, such as Hans Holund of Norway and Alexey Chervotkin of Russia, to make up some ground on the leaders.

      Devon has recovered somewhat from his illness, and the team is in the process of deciding the best format for his training and competition schedule, to prepare for Pyeongchang.

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