• Alex 50km Lahti Champion
    • Haywood Report: Tour de Ski Stage 4 cancelled due to weather

      January 3, 2018

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      Stage 4 of the Tour de Ski saw a rarity in World Cup ski racing, a cancelled race. Other than the 30k at the 2001 Worlds being cancelled due to cold, few can remember a previous decision like this.

      The women's qualifier ran first, with advertising boards falling victim to high winds, and heavy rain, as Maiken Falla of Norway set the top time, ahead of U.S. skier Jessica Diggins. Results

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      The weather hardly troubled coach Ivan
      03.01.2018, Oberstdorf, Germany (GER): Canadian Coach Ivan Babikov - FIS world cup cross-country, tour de ski, individual sprint, Oberstdorf (GER). www.nordicfocus.com. © Modica/NordicFocus.

      By the time the men's races were set to go, the weather ramped up even more, making the course a little more difficult. The only rational choice was to cancel the race.



      The women's qualifying race will be scored for FIS points but not in the Tour de Ski standings. Stage 4, is being cancelled from the race series. Thursday is a scheduled 15k mass start event for the men, but +7 deg. C. temperatures, heavy rain and some high wind gusts could interfere with that event also.

      Today's cancellation is not ideal for Alex Harvey and his quest for a podium at the Tour de Ski as he is one of the better sprinters among the leaders. He also was looking forward to racing on the new sprint course due to it's similarity to the sprint course in Pyeongchang.

      Remaining Tour de Ski Schedule:

      CET/EST - times

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      While weather is playing havoc in Europe, it is also interesting for North American athletes and organizers. The US Nationals are set to go in Anchorage, Alaska with rain and +1 deg. C. temperatures. Severe cold, and forecast weekend temperatures have caused quite a few changes to the Haywood NorAm, Olympic, World Jr & U23 Championship team trials, etc. in Mont Ste. Anne, Quebec.

      Saturday's classic sprints have now been changed to Friday, Revisions , with the races for younger skiers now changed to mass starts at 2pm. Based on possible moderating temperatures on Sunday, the races are presently scheduled to go ahead as planned, however those temperatures still only set as -19 or -18 as a high, depending on what web page you look at... -20 is the minimum temperature allowed for racing with the older athletes.

      There is a lot riding on these races as they are selection races for the Olympics, World Cups in mid January, the World Junior & U23 Championship events in Goms, Switzerland; along with some development tours that have been organized provincially.

      Olympic selection is still up in the air a fair bit at this time. Some athletes have made the standard to be nominated to the Olympic Team already and others particularly 2 women, are still eligible to be nominated for selection, based on the results of the trials events. The COC makes the final decision on who they accept to the team later in the month.

      A further confounding factor is that at this time the exact Olympic quota for Canada hasn't been finalized. This likely won't be final until the near the end of January, as FIS determine this based on excess available from countries that won't fill their own maximum eligible team size.

      So best to read the selection criteria very carefully, and keep on the lookout for updates, to determine who could be nominated to go where and when. For the World Jr & U23 events, winning a race will give you a good shot at making the team, and of course with any selection event just go and ski your fastest.

      At this time there are over 550 racers participating, including a number of U.S. competitors, from several colleg teams.

      Race Notice (note changes above)

      Results

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