FEB 10, 2020
In the 15 km freestyle competition in Falun everything went according to plan for Simen Hegstad Krueger – up until the last downhill section. Racing towards his 11th career podium the Atomic superstar fell victim to the deep, dull man-made snow and crashed shortly before the finish line, ending up in 6th position. In her comeback race Redster team mate Johanna Hagström sprinted to a sensational 9th place, skiing the fastest time in the qualifiers, after having recovered from a prolonged illness.
15 kilometers: double Olympic champion Simen Hegstad Krueger usually is a sure bet for the podium over this distance: he won in Davos in December and just recently finished 3rd in the pursuit of Nove Mesto and 2nd in the Skiathlon of Oberstdorf. It looked like he would continue his successful streak in Falun, but then tough conditions in the last downhill section became his downfall. Simen crashed, missing out on a very likely podium. He still managed to cross the finish line as 6th – that is also his position in the overall World Cup standings. In the long distance ranking he’s in 4th position.
“His crash was unfortunate, but he’s in good shape. Up next is the FIS Ski Tour 2020 from Östersund to Trondheim; that’s a good program for him with lots of points to score.”
Redster athlete Johanna Hagström wasn’t expecting to score points in Falun, following her illness-related absence from the World Cup; she had last raced in Planica before Christmas. So obviously everyone was super happy with her comeback: she skied the fastest time in the Classic Sprint qualifiers, then unfortunately made a tactical mistake in the finals, completing the race in a lucky 9th place. “An awesome achievement,” acknowledges Peter Landl.