Nordic Ski World Champs 2013


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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby Powell » Thu Feb 28, 2013 12:09 am

LopenUupunut wrote:
pakillo wrote:I wasn't surprised with Goessner's result, she is the fastest biathlete (though I'm not a biathlon fan) who has already competed in cross-country World Cup and World Championships in Liberec 2009, always in skating technique I think.
Yup, she had the fastest time on her leg in the Liberec relay at age 18 (ahead of Roponen, Steira, Haag etc.) and put the Germans back in medal contention. I think she was in even better shape a couple months ago, her skiing speed in Pokljuka (mid-December) and Oberhof (early January) was completely nuts.


Yes, she is very fast for a biathlete, but it's not like she's miles ahead of the others. Tora Berger has generally been outrunning Goessner in recent races, I believe, and there are at least a couple of others at a comparable level, like Domracheva and Makarainen.
To me it is surprising that these supposed non-specialists can contend for medals against the best runners in the world. I suppose one advantage they have is they only train one style, but even so... imagine if, say, top orienteering specialists showed up for track races at WC/OG and were in medal contention. Wouldn't it be a bit of an embarassment for track specialists?
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby Powell » Thu Feb 28, 2013 12:17 am

So what are your predictions for the relay today? Norway is obviously out of everyone's reach, but what about the minor medals? Finland and Sweden are obvious candidates, but Russia is starting to get their act together before the Olympics, and the US looks like possible contenders as well (it would be their first medal ever).
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby LopenUupunut » Thu Feb 28, 2013 2:12 am

Powell wrote:So what are your predictions for the relay today? Norway is obviously out of everyone's reach, but what about the minor medals? Finland and Sweden are obvious candidates, but Russia is starting to get their act together before the Olympics, and the US looks like possible contenders as well (it would be their first medal ever).
I'm not convinced by Finland. We look good on paper, but I'm sure we'll manage to screw up somehow :? We have a weaker anchor than any other top contenders, which doesn't help.

Sweden will obviously be strong. Wiken on 2nd could be their problem spot; she can certainly turn in a good leg, but her first half in the skiathlon wasn't that great. (Also, Kalla disappointed in the 10K; she'll have to do better than that if Sweden wants silver, but I think she can.)

USA were 3rd in Gällivare, but they got excellent classical legs from Brooks and Randall that time. I don't see Bjornsen and Randall repeating that today; Randall's been shaky lately, and Bjornsen just isn't in that kind of shape.

Germany might have an outside chance. They have a decent team and have often overperformed in championship relays, plus Gössner will likely be extra-hungry after missing out on a medal by 0.5...

I'd say 1. NOR, 2. SWE and 3rd a toss-up between FIN, GER and possibly RUS. Hope I'm wrong :)

--

You're right, of course, that Gössner isn't miles ahead of other biathletes (though she seemed to be in Oberhof and Pokljuka). I'm surprised how handily she beat Mäkäräinen - but I'd put that down to Mäkäräinen having a bad day, as opposed to Gössner having an exceptionally good one. As for Berger, wasn't she 4th in the XC season opener last year? She certainly wasn't in better shape then. Sure, it is a bit embarrassing for so-called specialists...

If orienteering swallowed lots of Kenya's top talent, we might well see that happening! I've always been interested in seeing how Kenya would fare in orienteering 8-)
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby j-a-m » Thu Feb 28, 2013 2:31 am

LopenUupunut wrote:You're right, of course, that Gössner isn't miles ahead of other biathletes (though she seemed to be in Oberhof and Pokljuka). I'm surprised how handily she beat Mäkäräinen - but I'd put that down to Mäkäräinen having a bad day, as opposed to Gössner having an exceptionally good one.

Guess one possible explanation is that the course was more difficult than the average biathlon world cup course, and Goessner is particularly good at going uphill.
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby pakillo » Thu Feb 28, 2013 2:33 am

Powell wrote:So what are your predictions for the relay today? Norway is obviously out of everyone's reach, but what about the minor medals? Finland and Sweden are obvious candidates, but Russia is starting to get their act together before the Olympics, and the US looks like possible contenders as well (it would be their first medal ever).

Well, Finnish team is surprising, I expected them to challenge Norway but with different team, maybe they need Saarinen on classical leg...
I put Germany on medal position and Sweden is questionable. France could do well. Classical legs are problem for USA.
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby j-a-m » Thu Feb 28, 2013 2:40 am

Powell wrote:Yes, she is very fast for a biathlete, but it's not like she's miles ahead of the others. Tora Berger has generally been outrunning Goessner in recent races, I believe, and there are at least a couple of others at a comparable level, like Domracheva and Makarainen.

To put that in perspective, Berger saves time by shooting faster than everyone else, and when looking at the overall time, that can make her seem even faster at skiing than she already is. Domracheva didn't have a good season until recently, but in top shape she's close to Goessner.
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby j-a-m » Thu Feb 28, 2013 2:41 am

pakillo wrote:Finland will need a lead after classical exchanges in the relay.

Yeah, for them to medal they need to get away from some of the top teams in the first half.
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby j-a-m » Thu Feb 28, 2013 2:45 am

LopenUupunut wrote:Germany might have an outside chance. They have a decent team and have often overperformed in championship relays, plus Gössner will likely be extra-hungry after missing out on a medal by 0.5...

Yeah, Goessner gotta be fired up after just missing the medal. She's gonna anchor, and if they are still close at that time, they have a good chance to medal.
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby j-a-m » Thu Feb 28, 2013 2:49 am

Powell wrote: and the US looks like possible contenders as well (it would be their first medal ever).

They seem to really focus on the relays at these world champs, and that worked out well the first time. If they are still close halfway through the race, they should have a pretty good chance.
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby LopenUupunut » Thu Feb 28, 2013 3:13 am

j-a-m wrote:
LopenUupunut wrote:You're right, of course, that Gössner isn't miles ahead of other biathletes (though she seemed to be in Oberhof and Pokljuka). I'm surprised how handily she beat Mäkäräinen - but I'd put that down to Mäkäräinen having a bad day, as opposed to Gössner having an exceptionally good one.

Guess one possible explanation is that the course was more difficult than the average biathlon world cup course, and Goessner is particularly good at going uphill.
The course might well have played a role, and not only that way.

Mäkäräinen often goes out fast in biathlon - every time I see her first splits I think she's gone out too fast but mostly she manages to get away with it. (It's probably partly illusory anyhow - she's supposed to be among the leaders in the early splits, after all.) Here, though, she did fade badly towards the end... I think she wasn't properly adjusted to skiing on a more punishing course and went out too fast as a result.

Which is unfortunate, since she completely avoided that trap at our National Champs (where she beat Roponen and Sarasoja-Lilja); there, it was Roponen who took the early lead and faded towards the end. The exact opposite happened here.
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby Powell » Thu Feb 28, 2013 4:04 am

j-a-m wrote:To put that in perspective, Berger saves time by shooting faster than everyone else, and when looking at the overall time, that can make her seem even faster at skiing than she already is. Domracheva didn't have a good season until recently, but in top shape she's close to Goessner.


Fast shooting certainly helps, but even when you look at pure running time, (deducting the time at the range) at the WC she was running faster than Goessner in all races except the mass start, I believe.
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby LopenUupunut » Thu Feb 28, 2013 4:49 am

LopenUupunut wrote:
Powell wrote:So what are your predictions for the relay today? Norway is obviously out of everyone's reach, but what about the minor medals? Finland and Sweden are obvious candidates, but Russia is starting to get their act together before the Olympics, and the US looks like possible contenders as well (it would be their first medal ever).
I'm not convinced by Finland. We look good on paper, but I'm sure we'll manage to screw up somehow :? We have a weaker anchor than any other top contenders, which doesn't help.
Told you :twisted:

Good call with Russia!
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby 26mi235 » Thu Feb 28, 2013 12:33 pm

Looking for upsets? Find the crew with the best wax....
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby Per Andersen » Thu Feb 28, 2013 1:17 pm

26mi235 wrote:Looking for upsets? Find the crew with the best wax....

Just go with Norway :D
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby Per Andersen » Thu Feb 28, 2013 1:36 pm

Ski Jump Big Hill went today. Kamil Stoch of Poland took it, longest jump 131.5 m. Former Polish great, Adam Malysz has the hill record with 136m. Stoch has been around and can win these things. Top favorite Schlierenzauer of Austria finished 8th. Silver and bronze to Peter Prevc of Slovenia and Anders Jacobsen of Norway.

Slovenia is a country who is rapidly advancing in winter sports and also in other sports.
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby pakillo » Thu Feb 28, 2013 4:41 pm

Per Andersen wrote:
26mi235 wrote:Looking for upsets? Find the crew with the best wax....

Just go with Norway :D

Believe me, waxing isn't that helpful...
http://www.svt.se/sport/vintersport/tog ... a-femmilen
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby pakillo » Sat Mar 02, 2013 12:00 pm

Heard something about going back to 30km/50km interval start in Falun 2015, I hope!
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby LopenUupunut » Sun Mar 03, 2013 5:48 am

pakillo wrote:Heard something about going back to 30km/50km interval start in Falun 2015, I hope!
That would be great!

Though to be fair, today's race wasn't boring :)
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby pakillo » Sun Mar 03, 2013 10:37 am

LopenUupunut wrote:
pakillo wrote:Heard something about going back to 30km/50km interval start in Falun 2015, I hope!
That would be great!

Though to be fair, today's race wasn't boring :)

Yep, logical tactic if one doesn't want sprint finish against Northug :)

I can't remember when was the last time Italy won zero medals at Worlds and pretty poor performance from Finland (though women could have done much better in the relay with a little bit different team...)
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Re: Nordic Ski World Champs 2013

Postby Powell » Mon Mar 04, 2013 4:52 am

Only one silver for Justyna Kowalczyk, that's certainly a major disappointment :( But the Polish jumpers partly made up for it. First Stoch's gold, then the first ever medal for Poland in the team event (although they originally finished fourth, before it was announced that Norway's score was miscalculated - very bizarre!)
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