Both Adam Johansson and Lisa Svensson have confirmed their participation in the upcoming 2014 China Tour de Ski and will defend their overall titles secured in great style last season. The Swedish ski stars will face stern opposition, though, and Johansson will be up against the "Ski King of China" Anders Hoegberg.
After the great success of last year, the 2014 China Tour de Ski has set the bar at the same height with six stages in three different areas of China. The Tour will commence in the North East and continue via Inner Mongolia to the far west of Xinjiang. It all starts on New Year's Day!
Although he focusses on marathon skiing now, Sweden's Anders Hoegberg once again topped the result sheet in China as he beat Henri Jelonen in today's Summer Ski sprint in Yakeshi, Inner Mongolia. Norway's Astrid Bruland was the fastest woman, beating China's Man Dandan into second place.
For the second year in succession elite skiers from Europe will face a national China selection at the Yakeshi Summer Ski Sprint in Inner Mongolia. The list of European athletes coming to race on the 19th of June has been released and it features some hot names.
The 2013 Summer Ski competition in Inner Mongolia's Yakeshi wil greet a number of top stars from the wintertime China Tour de Ski circuit. Sweden's Anders Hoegberg, triple Vasaloppet China winner, and Lisa Svensson, last winter's female champion have both confirmed their participation on 19 June.
The Summer Ski Sprint is back with a competition in Yakeshi in Inner Mongolia on June 19th. In total there will be 20 foreigners and 20 Chinese skiers fighting for the fame and glory. The concept and scale will be almost identical to the event in Yakeshi last year with the change that after the skiing on June 19th the international skiers will continue to Changchun in Jilin Province and participate in the Vasa Cross Country Running Festival (www.vasarun.com). After the skiing and running events the international skiers will go to Beijing for a few days before going back home.
More details coming soon.
Adam Johansson only had to qualify for the quarterfinals to wrap up the overall classification in the men's, but he pushed it to the limit one more time and claimed his fourth stage victory in the Nalati Ski Sprint. Matthias Jonasson was closely behind in second, while Kusti Kittilae secured his runner-up spot in the overall with a place in the semis. It is Johansson's second China Tour de Ski title after 2010.
After her majestic triumph in yesterday's distance race, Lisa Svensson did not lose control in the Nalati ski sprint today and crowned herself as the 2013 China Tour de Ski champion. Julia Jansson courageously took the fight to Svensson until the closing metres of the sprint final, but had to settle for second. Long-time Tour leader Frida Hallqvist was already eliminated in the quarterfinal.
Adam Johansson is set to win his second China Tour de Ski tomorrow as he won today's dramatic distance race in Nalati and disaster struck for Kusti Kittilae. Plagued by fever since yesterday's rest day, Kittilae did all he could to defend his overall lead but ultimately sunk to his knees and requires a miracle in the ski sprint tomorrow to outpoint Johansson.
Lisa Svensson staged a formidable coup in the sixth stage of the China Tour de Ski in Nalati, as she overtook the suprisingly strong Evelina Bangman in the final corner of the 2.5km distance race this afternoon. Svensson calculated the tricky 180 degree bend to perfection and left Bangman standing in the final dash to the line. What's more, Svensson takes over the lead in the overall classification as Frida Hallqvist had a complete off-day (11th) and Julia Jansson could not do better than 6th.