Germany’s Andrea Eskau continued her winning form in the women’s sitting. The current World Cup No. 1 looked unstoppable against Ukrainian 2013 IPC Nordic Skiing World Championship sprint classic silver medallist, Olena Iurkovska, in second.
Athletes from Japan, France, Sweden, Norway and Germany have collected six podium places in sprint freestyle races at the cross-country finals of the IPC Nordic Skiing World Cup on Saturday (18 January), slowing the charge of Sochi 2014 hosts Russia and fellow Nordic specialists Ukraine.
Japanese skiers picked up two third places in both men’s and women’s standing events, courtesy of Yoshihiro Nitta and Shoko Oto, whilst European athletes collected one first and second place and two third place finishes.
Germany’s Andrea Eskau continued her winning form in the women’s sitting. The current World Cup No. 1 looked unstoppable against Ukrainian 2013 IPC Nordic Skiing World Championship sprint classic silver medallist, Olena Iurkovska, in second. Norway’s Mariann Marthinsen picks up another podium in third to add to her bulging 2013-14 collection and continue her impressive consistency.
Whilst Russian World Championship bronze medallist Oleg Ponomarev led the field in the men’s visually impaired with guide Andrei Romanov, France’s Thomas Clarion and guide Julien Bourla were hot on his heels for second. 2013 World Championships sprint classic silver medallist Zebastian Modin, guided by Albin Ackerot, completed the podium. Reigning Canadian World Champion and winner of Friday’s (17 January) long distance freestyle Brian Mckeever (guide Eric Carleton) and Russia’s four-time Paralympic relay champion Nikolay Polukhin (guide Andrey Tokarev) could only manage 12th and eighth respectively.
Joining Russian victor Vladislav Lekomtcev, sprint classic world champion, and teammate Aleksandr Pronkov on the podium in the men’s standing was Japan’s 10km and sprint classic Paralympic champion Yoshihiro Nitta.
Adding to a great day for Japan on the 1.2km course was Oto Shoko, picking up a third in the women’s event to add to her two existing World Cup podiums. Ukraine’s World Championships sprint bronze medalist Oleksandr Kononova placed first, ahead of 16-year-old Russian Natalia Bratiuk, who currently sits an impressive third in the cross-country World Cup standings.
It was then left to the Ukrainians and Russians to battle it out in the men’s sit-ski and women’s visually impaired races.
Five-time Russian world champion Roman Petushkov was beaten to first place by Ukraine’s Maksim Yarovyi. Petushkov’s teammate and short distance biathlon world champion Grigory Murygin completed the podium.
The women’s visually impaired race was once again headed by 21-year-old five-time biathlon and cross-country world champion Mikhalina Lysova and guide Andrey Ivanov. Ukraine’s 10km biathlon World Championships silver medalist Oksana Shyshkova finished second, leading Lysova’s long distance world champion teammate Elena Remizova who add to her long list of accolades in third.
Races conclude in Oberstdorf tomorrow (18 January) with the middle distance classic events, before skiers head to Oberried for the final biathlon World Cup races ahead of Sochi 2014.
A livestream of the 2013 IPC Nordic Skiing World Cup is available.