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Cross-Country Skiing Season 2021/22

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    Cross-Country Skiing Season 2021/22

    Sunday 21.11.2021 Beitostolen - Womens 10 Km Classic

    Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

    Event start: 09:00 CET

    Head 2 Head: Heidi Weng - Ragnhild Haga

    Therese Johaug outclassed the rest of the Norwegian Elite at the 10 Km Classic yesterday (0:43 min in front of Heidi Weng, and 1:18 in front of Silje Theodorsen), and by the looks of her technique, I see no reason to doubt her at the Free Technique event today.
    Heidi Wengs form before the seasons starts will always be hard to predict, but in yesterdays race she showed that one key skill is still intact for this season.
    The big favorite Johaug passed Weng early in the race, but Weng followed the big favorites high pace through most of the race, and claimed a quite clear 2nd place then.
    Weng is a medal candidate at the 30 km Free Technique event in the Olympics in top form, and Johaug will once again start only 30 sec after Weng here.

    Former Olympic gold medalist at 10 km Free Technique from PyeongChang, Ragnhild Haga, ended 5th at the 10 km Classic yesterday 1:36 min behind Johaug (and 53 sec behind Weng).
    She lost her place in the National Team in front of this season, and this one of few chances for her to prove she is among the top skiiers worthy of participating in the World Cup in Ruka next week, and of coarse a ticket to the Beijing Olymics 2022.

    Very interesting duel set up by Betsafe, Expekt and Unibet, and I will choose Weng over Haga in this duel. Both skiiers are capable of top positions in free technique events this winter, but Wengs big advantage of starting 30 sec in front of Johaug (and her rare skill to keep Johaugs pace if catched) will trumph Hagas big motivation to prove good enough form for Ruka imo.

    Head 2 Head 10 km Free style Women: Heidi Weng - Ragnhild Haga

    Pick: Heidi Weng, 9/10 stakes, odds [email protected] Good luck!

    #2
    Sunday 21.11.2021 Gallivarepremiaren - Womens 10 Km Classic

    Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

    Event start: 09:00 CET

    Head 2 Head: Charlotte Kalla - Patricija Eiduka:

    While Therese Johaug is the big favorite at Beitostolen, Frida Karlsson and Ebba Andersson are equally big favorites in Gallivare, at the 10 km Free Technique event.

    Charlotte Kalla ended 3rd (0:48 min behind Frida Karlsson, and 0:32 min beind Ebba Andersson) at the 10 km Classic. Kalla has won gold medals in 3 straight Olympic Games (10km Free Technique in Vancouver `10, Women Relay for Sweden in Sochi `14 and Skiathlon in PyeongChang `18), and even though she has reached 34 years old now, im confident shes on track for the Free Technique events.

    Patricija Eiduka ended 11th on the 10 km Classic (1:55 min behind Frida Karlsson, and 1:07 min behind Charlotte Kalla), and the young Latvian ended 19th on the 10 km Free Technique in Muonio, Finland last week (1:19 min behind the winner Krista Parmakoski).
    Eiduka ended 43rd at the 10 km Free Technique in the World Championships in Oberstdorf 2021 (3:14 min behind Johaug, and 1:58 min behind Kalla).

    We have seen Kalla struggling with form at times the last seasons, but if she repeats her performance from yesterday, I see her as a clear favorite against Eiduka, at a distance she knows better than most.

    Head 2 Head 10 km Free style Women: Charlotte Kalla - Patricija Eiduka:

    Pick: Charlotte Kalla, 9/10 stakes, odds [email protected] Good luck!


    Comment


      #3
      Saturday 27.11.2021 Overall World Cup 2021/22 Women - Winner

      Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

      Deadline: 10:00 CET

      Betsafe/Nordicbet offer odds on the Womens World Cup Overall standings for the 2021/22 season, and its not surprising that Therese Johaug is rated as a clear favorite to win (1.50 as I write this).
      Therese Johaug looked very well prepared for the Olympic season at Beitostolen this weekend, and shes on track for reaching her main goal this season, claiming individual gold medals in Beijing 2022.
      She has stated in pre-season interviews that she is likely to skip Tour De Ski 2021/22, in order to fully prepare for the Beijing Olympics, and this is the key for my World Cup overall bets.

      The winner of Tour De Ski 2021/22 gets 400 overall points, and even ending 2nd will give 320 points (plus the points youll get for each stage).
      If Johaug win all individual distance races this season, except for the Tour De Ski events, she will end up with lower score than Jessica Diggins reached when she won the World Cup overall last season (including winning Tour De Ski 2020/21).

      That brings the question, can Jessica Diggins (USA) perform as steady in the top 10 as she did last season, now in a Olympic season?
      Well, the latest seasons, the American side have been participating in most World Cup races, no matter if Olympic Games or World Championships are the same season.
      Many skiiers are already openly saying they will choose to skip Tour De Ski in their Olympic Games preparations, and most interestingly for Diggins is that some key Swedish sprinters (Jonna Sundling is likely to skip, Linn Svahn is recovering from long term injury, and will most likely miss it, Maja Dahlqvist doubtful) are likely to skip the Tour. With two Sprint events in the Tour, Diggins is one of few overall skiers that can fight in the top in these sprints, and the less favorites against, the more her chances increases in the overall at top form.
      She often participates at Sprints in normal World Cup events as well, claiming points while Johaug, Karlsson and the rest only focus on the distance races.

      Frida Karlsson (Sweden) is the big outsider. She defeated Ebba Andersson and the rest of the Swedish opponents with ease at the 10 km Classic and the 10 km Free Style this weekend, and even though we have seen what shes capable of in big occations, we have never really seen her completing a consistent World Cup season due to injuries and setbacks.
      Karlsson has stated that participation in Tour De Ski is likely, and even though there is two Sprints in this Tour, I see her fighting for the win if she completes the Tour without injuries/sickness. (Karlsson impressed and ended 4th at the Free Technique Sprint in Tour De Ski last season)
      She has proved good form a week before the World Cup races starts, and she is capable of ending top 3 in all individual distance races at her best.

      There are several other candidates to fight in the top of the leaderboards this season, Ebba Andersson, Natalia Nepryaeva, Tatiana Sorina, Heidi Weng, Krista Parmakoski are a few of them. The question are their priorities in front of the Olympics, Tour De Ski or not, and also the contests in Les Rousses and Planica may be skipped the last month before the Olympics by a few.
      Recent seasons, only the American and the Russian top skiiers participate in pretty much all events (5 of the 6 highest ranked skiiers last season were American and Russian skiiers), and if also Tour De Ski is skipped by their competitors (to prepare for the Beijing Olympics), the World Cup overall may be 2nd priority for their main opponents also in 2021/22.

      This is long shot bets, but If Diggins or/and Karlsson deliver solid performances over time, they can reach higher than Johaug (if she skips the Tour, as planned).

      Betsafe and Nordicbet offer these bets, as of now.

      Overall World Cup 2021/22 Women - Winner:

      Pick: Jessica Diggins (USA), 5/10 stakes, odds [email protected]
      Pick: Frida Karlsson (Sweden), 5/10 stakes, odds [email protected]

      Good luck!



      Last edited by mightye; 22-11-21, 12:56.

      Comment


        #4
        Saturday 27.11.2021 Overall World Cup 2021/22 Men - Winner

        Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

        Deadline: 10:00 CET

        For the Mens Overall World Cup standings I predict a very close battle between the two giants, Alexander Bolshunov (Russia) and Johannes Hosflot Klabo (Norway), until the very end.
        Bolshunov won the World Cup overall clearly last season, and he won without a fight as Klabo and the Norwegians skipped the Tour De Ski, and some other events during the pandemic.
        Bolshunov is recovering from surgeries, and his form before the opening races in Ruka is uncertain. It will surprise me if he debuts on the winning podium next weekend, but we will surely see him fighting for the 1st place in most distance races this season.

        Johannes Hosflot Klabo has stated hes likely to compete through the entire Tour De Ski this season, and then his chances in the Overall standings greatly improves. 12 of 28 races are Sprint events in the 2021/22 World Cup, which will also clearly benefit Klabo, even though he has hinted that he will skip one of the Sprint events before Tour De Ski.
        I have no doubts he will be well prepared for the Olympic season.

        If Klabo completes the Tour, and gives Bolshunov a fight to the end there, the World Cup overall is also up for grabs after the Olympics imo.
        There are many skiiers capable of winning distance races and fight in the top, but it seems very hard to claim the No 1 spot from Bolshunov, unless youre a good sprinter (and fight for the many bonus points in Tour De Ski)

        Overall World Cup 2021/22 Men - Winner:

        Johannes Hosflot Klabo (Norway), 5/10 stakes, odds [email protected]
        Johannes Hosflot Klabo (Norway), 5/10 stakes, odds [email protected]

        Good luck!
        Last edited by mightye; 23-11-21, 07:23.

        Comment


          #5
          Friday 26.11.2021 Ruka - Mens Classic Sprint

          Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

          Event start: 12:30 CET

          Head 2 Head: Ristomatti Hakola (Finland) - Johan Haggstrom (Sweden)

          Were only a couple days from the opening event in the Cross-Country World Cup, and the special circumstances is that none of the Norwegian skiiers got their final pre-season Sprint at Beitostolen last weekend, due to bad weather.
          In the Classic Sprint in Ruka 2020, 3 Norwegians were on the podium. Erik Valnes won in front of Johannes Hosflot Klabo and Emil Iversen.
          Erik Valnes did participate in a Classic Sprint in Muonio 2 weeks ago, there he ended 4th behind Sergey Ustiugov (Russia), Alexander Terentev (Russia) and Federico Pellegrino (Italy).
          Klabo and Valnes are the obvious names youll think of as favorites again, but a bit more open because of this, and many skiiers may have improved in a Olympic season.

          Ruka has a very special uphill in front of the final flat sprint, and those skiiers that perform well here, often fight in the top also the following seasons.

          For this Head 2 Head, the home favorite Ristomatti Hakola will face the Swedish sprinter Johan Haggstrom.
          Hakola did not participate in the Sprints in Muonio the last weeks, and news about problems during the pre-season preparations have set him back a bit, compared to many others.
          Hakola has performed well in the Ruka sprints the latest seasons though, he ended 8th there last season, and 16th in 2019.

          Johan Haggstrom won clearly in the final Sprint event in Gallivare, Sweden this weekend. Even though it was in free technique, Haggstrom was clearly very determined, and won much clearer than the results suggests. He ended 4th at the 15 km Classic (in front of Calle Halfvarsson) the day after as well, and while there are a lot of troubles in the Swedish Mens team, Haggstrom and Leo Johansson are clearly on the rise.
          Johan Haggstrom ended 10th in Ruka last season, while he ended 7th in 2019.

          Battle between two skiiers that often reaches the Semis in Ruka. Even though Hakola has the home advantage, I rate Haggstroms performance in Gallivare high, and with some luck in the QF, SF heats, he has the form to reach a final this year.
          Hakola has not been tested against the best in Sprints in the final preparations, and I believe a decent performance in the QF, SF stage is max for him in the opener.

          Be aware that Unibet, Bet365 and SBO have opened odds on the event already, very interesting to see more bookies involved (SBO, and Bet365 have both Haggstrom as 1.66 - 1.68 favorite)

          Head 2 Head: Ristomatti Hakola (Finland) - Johan Haggstrom (Sweden)

          Pick: Johan Haggstrom (Sweden), 9/10 stakes, odds [email protected] Good luck!

          Comment


            #6
            Friday 26.11.2021 Ruka - Womens Classic Sprint

            Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

            Event start: 10:00 CET

            Head 2 Head: Maja Dahlqvist (Sweden) - Anamarija Lampic (Slovenia)

            The Swedish Womens Team ended 1st (Linn Svahn), 2nd (Maja Dalhqvist) and 3rd (Jonna Sundling) in Ruka 2020, and all 3 of them would have been favorites to win the Olympic Sprint in Beijing 2022.
            That being said, injuries have prevented that from happening, at least for Linn Svahn. The reports are saying shes out for the entire season, and that means the Olympics will come too soon.
            Jonna Sundling fell during the race in Gallivare, and she will be out for at least a month from the latest reports.

            Maja Dahlqvist was not injured, but she had her race damaged in the Semis in Gallivare last weekend. She won with ease in the QF, and the form is not in question imo. She should have a good chance to win here without problems on the way.
            Dahlqvist finished 2nd here behind Svahn last year, and she finished 2nd behind Yulia Stupak in 2018.

            Anamarija Lampic ended 7th in Ruka last season, and 9th in 2019. Lampic claimed the bronze medal at the Classic Sprint in the World Championships in Oberstdorf 2021, and shes "always" among the top 4 in her heats. Ruka hasnt been her favorite venue though, I feel shes much better at quicker more technical venues.

            With Svahn and Sundling out, the World Champion in Team Sprint, Maja Dahlqvist, will be among the clear favorites to win in Ruka.
            Team Sweden will also have Hagstrom, Somskar and Dyvik fighting one of the most important races in their careers, as Svahns withdrawal due to injury, and Sundlings injury concerns, can make new spots available for the Olympics.
            Even Frida Karlsson can shock and reach a final here (if she get to start), as she was very close to claim a SF spot last season (only defeated by Sundling and Weng)

            Anamarija Lampic will be a clear medal candidate in top form at the Olympics, but I rate Dahlqvist with better chances Friday, due to her good performances in Ruka (ended 2nd in 2018 and 2020), and the tough battle for tickets to Beijing in the Swedish Sprint Team, compared to the Slovenian team, where Lampic can time her form 100% for the Olympics (in February) without pressure to perform at top level in November.

            Head 2 Head: Maja Dahlqvist (Sweden) - Anamarija Lampic (Slovenia)

            Pick: Maja Dahlqvist (Sweden), 9/10 stakes, odds [email protected] Good luck!
            Last edited by mightye; 23-11-21, 12:24.

            Comment


              #7
              Saturday 27.11.2021 Ruka - Womens 10 km Classic

              Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

              Event start: 13:30 CET

              Head 2 Head: Charlotte Kalla (Sweden) - Anna Dyvik (Sweden)

              A interesting Swedish Head 2 Head duel is offered to us on Saturday, the days after the opening Sprint.

              Charlotte Kalla is not likely to participate in the Sprint event on Friday (Sweden have many sprinters eager to fight for a ticket to Beijing + Frida Karlsson can get a spot in her hopes to win the Ruka triple, and prepare for a possible Team Sprint in the Olympics).
              With other words, Kalla will be able to fully focus on the 10 km Classic on Saturday, and the 10 km Free Technique Pursuit on Sunday.
              Kalla ended 3rd in Gallivare this weekend (0:48 min behind Frida Karlsson and 0:32 min behind Ebba Andersson). She was 13 sec quicker than Anna Dyvik then, that ended 4th.
              Kalla ended 17th at the 10 km Classic in Ruka 2019 (1:22 min behind Johaug), and she ended 2nd at the same distance in 2018 (0:22 min behind Johaug)

              Anna Dyvik impressed a lot in Gallivare, as she won the Sprint event, and ended on a strong 4th position at the 10 km Classic (1:01 min behind Frida Karlsson, and 0:13 min behind Charlotte Kalla)
              She ended 13th at the 10 km Classic in Ruka last season (1:01 min behind Johaug), Kalla didnt participate then.

              Kalla and Dyvik have never faced each other at this distance in Ruka, but they faced each other in March 2021 in Falun at the 15 km Classic, then Kalla ended 5th, and Dyvik 6th, 13 sec behind.

              I rate Kalla with the edge here. Dyvik will give her very best to build on her impressive Sprint win this weekend, and claim a good result the day before the 10 km Classic at the Womens Sprint, as that is her main goal this season.
              The 10 km Classic is also important, as the best Sprinters may claim a spot in the Womens Relay team as well, but for this distance, Kalla will most likely have her main focus as well. A Classic leg for the Relay team, and the 10 km Classic Individual may be her best chances in Beijing.
              Charlotte Kalla has won gold medals in 3 straight Olympic Games (10km Free Technique in Vancouver `10, Womens Relay for Sweden in Sochi `14 and Skiathlon in PyeongChang `18), and even though Frida Karlsson and Ebba Andersson are the main favorites to challenge Therese Johaug for the Swedes, Kalla and Finnish Parmakoski will surely time their form better than most for the Olympics in February (at their prefered distances).

              Head 2 Head: Charlotte Kalla (Sweden) - Anna Dyvik (Sweden)

              Pick: Charlotte Kalla (Sweden), 9/10 stakes, odds [email protected] Good luck!

              Comment


                #8
                Friday 26.11.2021 Ruka - Womens Classic Sprint

                Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

                Event start: 12:30 CET

                Womens Classic Sprint - Winner:

                The Swedish Womens Team ended 1st (Linn Svahn), 2nd (Maja Dalhqvist) and 3rd (Jonna Sundling) in Ruka 2020, and all 3 of them would have been favorites to win the Olympic Sprint in Beijing 2022.
                That being said, injuries have prevented that from happening, at least for Linn Svahn. The reports are saying shes out for the entire season, and that means the Olympics will come too soon.
                Jonna Sundling fell during the race in Gallivare, and she will be out for at least a month from the latest reports.

                Maja Dahlqvist was not injured, but she had her race damaged in the Semis in Gallivare last weekend. She won with ease in the QF, and the form is not in question imo. She should have a good chance to win here without problems on the way.
                Dahlqvist finished 2nd here behind Svahn last year, and she finished 2nd behind Yulia Stupak in 2018.

                Anamarija Lampic ended 7th in Ruka last season, and 9th in 2019. Lampic claimed the bronze medal at the Classic Sprint in the World Championships in Oberstdorf 2021, and shes "always" among the top 4 in her heats. Ruka hasnt been her favorite venue though, I feel shes much better at quicker more technical venues.

                With Svahn and Sundling out, the World Champion in Team Sprint, Maja Dahlqvist, will be among the clear favorites to win in Ruka.
                Team Sweden will also have Hagstrom, Somskar and Dyvik fighting one of the most important races in their careers, as Svahns withdrawal due to injury, and Sundlings injury concerns, can make new spots available for the Olympics.
                Even Frida Karlsson can shock and reach a final here (if she get to start), as she was very close to claim a SF spot last season (only defeated by Sundling and Weng)

                Anamarija Lampic will be a clear medal candidate in top form at the Olympics, but I rate Dahlqvist with better chances Friday, due to her good performances in Ruka (ended 2nd in 2018 and 2020), and the tough battle for tickets to Beijing in the Swedish Sprint Team, compared to the Slovenian team, where Lampic can time her form 100% for the Olympics (in February) without pressure to perform at top level in November.

                Maja Dahlqvist is my favorite to win the Olympic Sprint, and she has performed well in Ruka (2nd in 2020 and 2018). The reports have been good in the preparations, and without race incidents I see her fight for the win Friday.
                Small cover on Maiken Caspersen Falla, as she will face much easier opposition than normal on Friday (no Svahn and Sundling), and even though her form is hard to estimate at this point, she has defeated opponents like these numerous times before.

                Pick: Maja Dahlqvist (Sweden) to win, 8/10 stakes, odds [email protected]
                Pick: Maiken Caspersen Falla (Norway) to win, 2/10 stakes, odds [email protected]

                Good luck!

                Comment


                  #9
                  The Season opener delivered directly.

                  - Dahlqvist, or Falla, to win
                  - Dahlqvist - Lampic (Dahlqvist)
                  - Hakola - Haggstrom (Haggstrom)

                  Edit. Dahlqvist won with ease, and won also the H2H against Lampic. Falla impressed after having doubts on the form, and ended 3rd. (The Olympic picks also looks good, even though much can happen in 3 months)
                  Alexander Terentev (Russia) show signs of something great, and wins the Mens final with ease.
                  Regarding the Mens H2H, Haggstrom had better time in his QF heat, but Hakola is placed in front due to better Qual time. Pick lost.

                  For the World Cup Overall bets, Jessica Diggins won the Qual, and gained important points, as well as Frida Karlsson that reached the final.
                  In the Mens World Cup Overall Johannes Hosflot Klabo ended 2nd in the Sprint, while main opponent Bolshonov ended 17th.

                  + 13.03 Units today
                  Last edited by mightye; 27-11-21, 05:41.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Saturday 27.11.2021 Ruka - Mens 15 km Classic (Individual)

                    Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

                    Event start: 10:15 CET (11:15 Local time)

                    Head 2 Head: Alexey Chervotkin (Russia) - Alexander Bolshonov (Russia)

                    Russias strongest Classic skiier has been Alexander Bolshunov the latest years, but Alexey Chervotkin is not that far behind in top form.
                    Chervotkin ended 2nd at the 15 km Classic in Ruka `20, 15 sec behind Klabo and 3 sec ahead of Bolshunov.
                    He also ended 3rd at the 15 km Classic Mass Start in Val di Fiemme during Tour De Ski 2021, 3 sec after Bolshunov (with no Norwegians participating).
                    At the World Championships in Oberstdorf 2021, Chervotkin outclassed all competitors for Russia at the 1st leg (10 km Classic) of the Mens Relay, and had a 0:44 min gap on Finland, and 0:56 min lead on Pal Golberg and the big favorites Norway.

                    Chervotkin has faced todays main favorite Iivo Niskanen twice in pre-season at the 15 km Classic in Muonio, Finland
                    Niskanen won closely, 5 sec in front of Chervotkin two weeks ago (13.11), while only 2 sec seperated them last week (20.11).
                    Add that Bolshonov made his pre-season contest debut in that race, and he was 0:43 min behind Niskanen, and 0:41 min behind Chervotkin one week ago.

                    Bolshunov won the World Cup overall clearly last season, and he won without a fight as Klabo and the Norwegians skipped the Tour De Ski, and some other events during the pandemic.
                    Bolshunov is recovering from surgeries, and his form before the opening races in Ruka is uncertain. It will surprise me if he debuts on the winning podium next weekend, but we will surely see him fighting for the 1st place in most distance races this season.
                    As mentioned above, Bolshonov made his pre-season debut in the (unofficial) 15 km Classic race last week, then he ended 5th, 0:43 min behind todays favorite Iivo Niskanen, and 0:41 min behind Alexey Chervotkin.
                    Bolshonov participated in yesterdays Sprint event, and failed to reach the Semis then.

                    Bolshonov will be among the main favorites for most of these Individual races later this season, but due to the difficult build-up for this season, Bolshonov are still in the recovering/build-up face after surgeries, and he was 0:41 min behind Chervotkin at this distance one week ago (even though it was a unofficial race).
                    Chervotkin is one of my main favorites to win (and claim medal) at this distance in the Olympics, and even though it is the first distance race of the season, and Bolshonov have the advantage of starting last of the seeded skiiers, I will give Chervotkin the edge here.
                    Unibet/Expekt offer this duel.

                    Head 2 Head: Alexey Chervotkin (Russia) - Alexander Bolshonov (Russia)

                    Pick: Alexey Chervotkin (Russia), 9/10 stakes, odds [email protected] Good luck!

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Saturday 27.11.2021 Ruka - Mens 15 km Classic (Individual)

                      Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

                      Event start: 10:15 CET (11:15 Local time)

                      Head 2 Head: Alexander Bolshonov (Russia) - Johannes Hosflot Klabo (Norway)

                      Bolshunov won the World Cup overall clearly last season, and he won without a fight as Klabo and the Norwegians skipped the Tour De Ski, and some other events during the pandemic.
                      Bolshunov is recovering from surgeries, and his form before the opening races in Ruka is uncertain. It will surprise me if he debuts on the winning podium next weekend, but we will surely see him fighting for the 1st place in most distance races this season.
                      As mentioned above, Bolshonov made his pre-season debut in the (unofficial) 15 km Classic race last week, then he ended 5th, 0:43 min behind todays favorite Iivo Niskanen, and 0:41 min behind Alexey Chervotkin.
                      Bolshonov participated in yesterdays Sprint event, and failed to reach the Semis then.

                      Johannes Hosflot Klabo won the 15 km Classic in Ruka last season, 0:15 min in front of Chervotkin, and 0:18 min in front of Bolshonov.
                      He ended 2nd at the 15 km Classic mass start in Engadin after the World Championships in March, 0:18 min behind Bolshonov.
                      Klabo ended 2nd behind hot shot Terentev in the Classic Sprint yesterday, as he did one year ago in Ruka (ended 2nd behind Valnes then).

                      Bolshonov will be among the main favorites for most of these Individual races later this season, but due to the difficult build-up for this season, Bolshonov are still in the recovering/build-up face after surgeries, and he was 0:41 min behind Chervotkin at this distance one week ago (even though it was a unofficial race).
                      Klabo havent competed much at this distance the last year, but when he does, he is capable of winning at his best.
                      Even though the Norwegian often skips this distance during major events, this is actually a distance he is very capable of fighting in the top.
                      Bolshonov have the advantage of starting last of the seeded skiiers, but his form is doubtful now in the season opening weekend, and I will give Klabo the edge here.

                      Unibet/Expekt offer this duel.

                      Head 2 Head: Alexander Bolshonov (Russia) - Johannes Hosflot Klabo (Norway)

                      Pick: Johannes Hosflot Klabo (Norway), 9/10 stakes, odds [email protected] Good luck!

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Saturday 27.11.2021 Ruka - Mens 15 km Classic (Individual)

                        Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

                        Event start: 10:15 CET (11:15 Local time)

                        Iivo Niskanen at a 15 km Classic Individual, in front of his home fans sounds like a good recipe for a win.
                        Niskanen has won two pre-season starts at this distance, closely in front of Alexey Chervotkin both times.

                        Johannes Hosflot Klabo won the 15 km Classic in Ruka last season, 0:15 min in front of Chervotkin, 0:18 min in front of Bolshonov and 0:21 min in front of Niskanen.
                        Klabo ended 2nd at this distance in Ruka `19, 0:13 min behind Iivo Niskanen.
                        He ended 2nd at the 15 km Classic mass start in Engadin after the World Championships in March, 0:18 min behind Bolshonov.
                        Klabo ended 2nd behind hot shot Terentev in the Classic Sprint yesterday, as he did one year ago in Ruka (ended 2nd behind Valnes then).

                        Alexey Chervotkin has been inches away from winning the 15 km Classic duels with Niskanen during the pre-season, and must be rated in the top again, while Hans Christer Holund won the Norwegian pre-season 15 km Classic at Beitostolen (no Klabo in the field then), as should be rated among the favorites here.
                        Alexander Bolshonov (doubtful form) and Emil Iversen (poor Sprint yesterday, clearly behind Holund at the Classic race at Beitostolen) are two very capable outsiders that can win at their best.

                        Iivo Niskanen to repeat his win at the 15 km Classic from Ruka 2019 sounds likely, and [email protected] can be tried.
                        That being said, Chervotkin has been close to defeat him twice in the build-ups, and odds [email protected] for the Russian to be a second or two in front this time can also be worth a shot.
                        My pick will be that Johannes Hosflot Klabo will end top 3. He won this race last season, and ended 2nd in 2019.
                        He missed out of the pre-season races in Beitostolen one week ago, and he may not be at his best 3 months in front of the Olympics, but I have no doubts that he can fight high up the lists without sickness/race incidents.

                        Expekt/Unibet offer 9 for the winner of the 15 km Classic last season, and 2nd place in 2019 to win, and Expekt/Unibet/Bet365 offer odds 3 for him to end top 3.
                        I rate Klabo among 3 other favorites to win/end top 3 (Niskanen, Chervotkin, Holund), and then odds 3 must be tried imo.

                        Pick: Johannes Hosflot Klabo (Norway) to end top 3, 4/10 stakes, odds [email protected]
                        Pick: Johannes Hosflot Klabo (Norway) to end top 3, 6/10 stakes, odds [email protected]

                        Good luck!.


                        Comment


                          #13
                          Saturday 27.11.2021 Ruka - Womens 10 km Classic

                          Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

                          Event start: 13:30 CET

                          Head 2 Head: Heidi Weng (Norway) - Tatiana Sorina (Russia)

                          Heidi Weng did not start at the 10 km Classic in Ruka last year, but she ended 7th in 2019, 0:58 min behind Therese Johaug.
                          She ended 2nd behind Therese Johaug, 0:25 min behind, at Lillehammer last season (in a all Norwegian race).
                          In the 10 km Classic pre-season race at Beitostolen one week ago, Heidi Weng ended 2nd behind Johaug, 0:43 min behind.

                          Tatiana Sorina ended 4th at the 10 km Classic in Ruka last season, 0:25 min behind Johaug (and ended 2nd in the Ruka Triple contest).
                          Not many other 10 km Classic individual races last season, but she ended 5th, 7 seconds behind Ebba Andersson at Bronze medal at the 10 km Free Technique during the World Championships in Oberstdorf 2021.
                          Sorina ended 2nd, 0:13 min behind Natalia Nepryaeva, at the 10 km Classic in Muonio 2 weeks ago, while she won the unofficial test in Muonio one week ago, 2 sec in front of Nepryaeva.

                          Both skiiers participated in the Sprint event yesterday, Sorina ended 25th, while Weng failed to advance from the Qualification.

                          Heidi Weng failed to qual for the QF stage in the Sprints yesterday, and today a 10 km Classic Individual in cold weather between -14 to -18 degrees Celsius awaits. Something tells me thats not the ideal conditions for her. Weng will also not have the advantage of starting directly before Johaug, as she did in both races at Beitostolen. Weng seem in better form for the season opener this season, compared to the last ones though.
                          Tatiana Sorina impressed a lot in the season opener in Ruka last season, and Sorina/Nepryaeva have won one test run each at this distance in pre-season. I believe Sorina can fight in the top today, behind Johaug and Karlsson.
                          Expekt/Unibet offer 2.30 for Sorina to win, in a duel I see Sorina with the favorite edge.

                          Head 2 Head: Heidi Weng (Norway) - Tatiana Sorina (Russia)

                          Pick: Tatiana Sorina (Russia), 9/10 stakes, odds [email protected] Good luck!

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Tougher day today, I did chose wrong in the mens race, and Bolshunov ended 3rd a month after surgery.

                            Klabo top 3 - Lost.
                            Klabo - Bolshunov (Klabo) - Lost.
                            Chervotkin - Bolshunov (Chervotkin) - Won
                            Kalla - Dyvik (Kalla) - Lost.
                            Weng - Sorina (Sorina) - Won.

                            - 10.9 Units

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Sunday 28.11.2021 Ruka - Mens 15 km Free Technique Pursuit

                              Winter sports - Cross-Country Skiing

                              Event start: 12:30 CET (13:30 Local time)

                              Head 2 Head: Hans Christer Holund (Norway) - Artem Maltsev (Russia)

                              Iivo Niskanen delivered in the season opener race, and won the 15 km Classic at home. He will keep the distance he arrived in front of the rest yesterday, in this pursuit.
                              Alexey Chervotkin once again proved solid form as he finished 2nd yesterday, and even though hes better at Classic races, he can end in the top 10 again.
                              Alexander Bolshunov finished the 15 km Classic in strong fashion, and even with all the preoblems in pre-season hes been having, hes still fighting in the top already. At his best he would be a given favorite from this position, as Niskanen, Chervotkin and Bolshunov may keep a high pace from the start.

                              Hans Christer Holund didnt live up to the high expectations yesterday, and ended 12th, 0:59 min behind Niskanen. He often performs well in Pursuits like these, as hes very good at keeping a steady high pace through the entire race.

                              Artem Maltsev ended 14th yesterday, and will start 1:12 min behind Niskanen today. 9 skiiers will start within 10 sec of Maltsev, and we will most likely see a big group helping each other here.

                              The question will be, will Holund be catched by group Maltsev (14 sec behind), or will Holund be able to catch Klabo (17 sec in front) and make a small group with him and Golberg.
                              Holund at his best would be fighting for the best skiing time today, but yesterdays performance was so, so, and if he does another slightly underachiving performance a decent top 15 performance would be likely.

                              Artem Maltsev ended 5th at the 15 km Free Technique in the World Championships in Oberstdorf 2021, and he won the National Championships at this distance in Russia with ease.
                              Maltsev won at this distance in the unofficial test in Muonio last week, 7 sec in front of Yakimushkin, 11 sec in front of Bolshunov, 18 sec in front of Niskanen, 33 sec in front of Chervotkin, and 45 sec in front of Ustiugov.

                              Its always hard to predict season opener races, but 3.50 for in form free technique skiier Maltsev to end higher than Holund, that was below par yesterday, is worth a shot imo.

                              Head 2 Head: Hans Christer Holund (Norway) - Artem Maltsev (Russia)

                              Pick: Artem Maltsev (Russia), 9/10 stakes, odds [email protected] Good luck!

                              Comment

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